If you suffered a back injury from a crash, you may be eligible to recover compensation. However, because back injuries are so common, the insurance company will likely push back and try to devalue or deny your claim. They may say your back injury was not caused by the crash; that it was preexisting or simply the result of wear and tear.
How can you prove a back injury is from a crash? What if you do have wear and tear or there was a preexisting injury? Does that mean that you cannot seek compensation for damages sustained in a crash?
At Bernstein & Poisson, we have the answers to your legal questions. Our knowledgeable Las Vegas- based car accident lawyers have decades of experience, and we are ready to help you seek compensation. Back injuries are always challenging to prove and even harder to link to a crash. However, we know how to gather the evidence to prove a valid claim.
Why is it Hard to Prove a Back Injury is From a Crash?
Backs are highly susceptible to injury. People hurt their backs every day doing mundane tasks, playing sports or doing other activities. Insurance companies know this, which is why they diligently search through your medical history, social media and other sources. They are looking for reasons to blame your back injury on something else besides the crash.
If the at-fault party’s insurance company discovers an old injury or medical condition, they may either deny your claim or give you a ridiculously low offer. They may even tell you it is the only offer you will get. Unfortunately, crash victims who do not know their legal rights may believe the insurance company and accept this low offer.
To find out what your claim may actually be worth, it is best to speak with a licensed and knowledgeable attorney about your situation.
For a free legal consultation, call (855) 605-2959
What Back Injuries Could Be Caused by a Crash?
Victims who sustain a back injury in a crash may experience chronic pain, reduced mobility, or paralysis.
Common car crash back injuries may include:
The sudden back and forth movement of the head during a collision causes this injury. Depending on how severe the injury is, victims may suffer from torn ligaments, muscles, tendons and other damage. The pain is significant and often radiates from the neck down to the upper and lower back.
Lumbar Sprains and Strains
At impact, a crash victim could suffer torn or stretched muscles, tendons and ligaments in the lower back. Victims could experience acute lower back pain, muscle spasms and tightness.
Bulging or Herniated Discs
The impact of a crash can cause a disc anywhere along your spinal column to slip out of place, tear or become herniated. These injuries are painful and can also result in nerve pain if a fragment of a damaged disc presses against any of the nearby spinal nerves. Without treatment, further damage and degeneration of the spine may occur.
Lumbar Spine Injuries
There are many painful back injuries victims could suffer in a crash. From severe spinal cord injuries to sciatica, these injuries require immediate and ongoing care to help facilitate recovery and pain management.
The spinal cord is housed in a channel that goes through your vertebrae. If an injury causes that channel to narrow, the vertebrae applies pressure that pinches the nerves within the channel. Most victims are affected in their neck or lumbar areas.
Typical symptoms of spinal stenosis include tingling in the arm or fingers, neck stiffness and difficulty lifting even light objects. If this injury progresses, victims could suffer more extreme symptoms, including lower back stiffness and pain, and the loss of bowel or bladder control.
While spinal stenosis is not an immediate back injury from a crash, it is an incentive to get medical care without delay. When back injuries remain untreated, spinal stenosis and other secondary complications may result.
What Are Common Back Pain Symptoms After a Crash?
Right after the crash, an injured victim may not feel anything. In the first moments to hours after a crash, injured victims are often still in a state of shock. However, once that shock begins to wear off, some symptoms that indicate a new or aggravated injury may include these back pain symptoms:
- Burning pain: This could be short-lived or a burning sensation that lasts for days or longer.
- Muscle spasms: Even minor back injuries could result in muscle spasm with mild to severe pain.
- Numbness or tingling: Often an indicator of tight or pinched nerves, victims could feel a combination of tingling, numbness, along with radiating pain from the affected area.
- Stiffness: It is not unusual to suffer both pain and stiffness following a back injury.
How Do You Prove a Back Injury After a Crash?
When seeking compensation for a back injury, victims have the burden of proving it was caused by a crash. This process is complicated and best handled by an experienced attorney.
If you work with a lawyer, he or she can gather strong evidence that supports your claim in order to prove that:
- The other driver’s negligent or reckless driving caused the crash
- You suffered a back injury as a direct result of that crash
- The damages you sustained were a result of the crash and your back injury
How Victims Can Help Provide Evidence
The most important thing you can do after a crash is call 9-1-1. When police respond, they will assess what happened and document the crash scene.
It is vital that you seek emergency medical care after the crash. This step helps to protect your health and also provides a record of your injuries and how they happened. A documented medical history provides critical evidence that helps your attorney to link your injuries back to the crash.
After your injuries have been stabilized, we strongly recommend seeking assistance from a qualified attorney. He or she can guide you throughout the legal process and help you avoid making mistakes that could damage your claim.
Do You Still Have a Claim if You Had a Preexisting Injury?
Whether your injury was due to wear and tear, or you had a preexisting injury that was made worse by the crash, you may still have a claim.
That said, it is important to tell your attorney about any prior injuries you had. When your attorney knows everything, he or she has time to prepare an advantageous legal strategy. Getting caught off-guard not only damages your credibility, but also makes it harder for your attorney to protect your claim.
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At Bernstein & Poisson, we are here to help. We are deeply committed to our clients and are prepared to fight for maximum compensation on your behalf.
Your initial consultation with us is completely free, and there is no obligation to hire us after this meeting. If we represent you, there is nothing to pay up front. We only get paid when your case concludes, and only if we win.