Rear-end accident with whiplash and exacerbated scoliosis...
My children and I were rear-ended in our F250 while stopped at a red light on a dark country road around 7:30pm. The occupants of the vehicle were: myself (driving), a 1 year old (rear-facing) & 3 year old (front-facing), both in the back seat.
The other vehicle (also a F250) was traveling at nearly full posted speed of 55mph. Our truck sustained damage to entire rear-end, and other vehicle had to be towed because the force of the collision rendered it inoperable.
The other driver claimed at the scene that he didn't see us and that he was looking down at his phone. He was not injured.
Immediately after impact, I knew my neck was injured and that something was not right with my back. I have scoliosis which had been well managed up until our accident with physical therapy and weight training, so I stay very "in tune" with my body to stay ahead of any flare-ups or muscle-related bone movement (ie. worsening of my curvature).
The children both suffered soft tissue injuries which required chiropractic treatments.
Like I mentioned, we have 2 small children and I am blessed to stay home to raise them. As a result of my whiplash injury, I have had:
- rigorous physical therapy (5x/wk the first 2 wks, then 3x/wk for 8 wks, then 2x/wk)
- MRI, X-rays, & EMG to diagnose numbness in my fingers and weakness in grip
- deep tissue & trigger point massage
- chiropractic manipulation
- cervical traction, ultrasound, & interferential electrical muscle stimulation
- stretching & physical therapy exercise, etc.
Even with all of this treatment, I am not 100% back to the same level of living as I was before the accident. Not even close.
Immediately after the accident, I was unable to provide everyday care for my children (unable to pick them up, hold them for very long, carry anything for them, etc.). As a stay at home parent, that is my JOB and it broke my heart not to be able to care for my kids like they needed.
My back surgeon made the note that my curvature does seem to have activated and suggested that surgery may be the solution in the not to far future.
I know this is a brief overview of our situation, but I very much would appreciate an idea of "ballpark" what to ask/demand from the other party's insurance company, in hopes that a settlement can be made. Any perspective you can give would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!
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ANSWER for "Rear-end accident with whiplash and exacerbated scoliosis...":
KJ (Houston, TX):
You are in a precarious position. In most cases, insurance companies consider compensation based on the injury and its direct effect on subsequent medical bills and related "damages."
Damages are unique to every accident and to every person involved in the accident. In car accidents, property damage and personal injury claim damages can include medical, dental and therapy bills, out of pocket expenses (for such items as prescription and over the counter medications, slings, crutches, wheelchairs, etc.), lost wages, and for pain and suffering.
In your case, your pre-existing injury will cloud the issue of liability. In other words, if, at the time of the impact you did not have Scoliosis, the driver's insurance company would likely have agreed to pay all the damages resulting from the crash. This is based on the obvious negligence of the other driver when striking you from the rear.
You can be confident the insurance company will offer a settlement which takes into account your pre-existing Scoliosis. As a result, the insurance company may not agree to cover all of your damages.
Without knowing the extent of your damages, it is impossible to suggest an amount of compensation which would be appropriate.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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