Visitor Question

Lawyers Using Previous Accident to Minimize Injuries…

Submitted By: Pedro (Waterbury)

I was going slow in traffic and was rear ended by two cars. I hit my face on the steering wheel, cracked several teeth and hurt my lower back. Lawyers for the at-fault driver are trying to use an accident from my past, where I was also rear ended, to minimize my injuries and the amount they have to pay.

Is there anything I can do?

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Pedro,

It really depends. For instance, if you are claiming your back was injured in this new collision and your back was hurt in the prior collision, the attorneys do have the right to attempt to determine if the new injury was an exacerbation of the prior injury.

They want to know where the prior back injury’s pain and discomfort ended, and the new pain and discomfort began.

Presuming your prior collision resulted in back injuries, the attorneys would next look at the amount of time which passed between the first and second collisions.

If your case has already progressed to the stage where attorneys are involved this means your case was unable to be settled with the Claims Adjuster.

If you are representing yourself and the case has already been transferred to the at-fault driver’s insurance company’s attorneys, the case has progressed from a mediated state to a contested one.

If you are represented by an attorney she will know what to do, but as we said, she will not be able to stop the attorneys from delving into your past. They can ask personal questions, ranging from whether you have a criminal record, right through the issues about your new back injury.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: August 16, 2011

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