One’s likelihood of developing a medical condition increases as one ages. As a reality, multitudes of people in the United States have all been treated for some sort of health issue at a certain stage of their lives. But your ability to handle health problems and keep up with daily activities as comfortably as possible might improve with time.
This, unfortunately, may alter your situation when you’re involved in a vehicle accident. Generally speaking, pre-existing medical conditions may not be admissible as losses in an automobile accident claim. Yet if a car collision aggravates or accelerates a pre-existing illness, you may seek damages that immediately derive from such exacerbation. When accidents happen, it is not unusual for victims to already be in less-than-ideal health due to pre-existing medical conditions, prior injuries, or some other factor. Check this out if you’ve been injured in a car crash and want to talk to a lawyer about your options before making a claim.
● Pre-Existing Conditions: What Are They?
Pre-existing conditions are chronic medical concerns that you already had prior to a road accident or any other personal injury incident. This might refer to something as simple as a recent wound to a long-term recurring ailment. That is, your current health problems are unrelated to the vehicular crash you were in. While a pre-existing condition might make things more difficult, it shouldn’t be used as an excuse to prohibit you from receiving adequate damages for the harm you sustained. In personal injury claims, insurers may attempt to classify as many injuries and illnesses as “pre-existing” in an attempt to minimize financial liability for treatments and pay victims for relevant losses. Claim paperwork usually requires disclosing any pre-existing ailments. Being deceptive can only benefit your opposition and make your situation worse.
● Pre-Existing Conditions Made Worse: Proximate Cause
Any negligent driver is nonetheless liable for the injured party’s medical bills, regardless of whether or not the victim suffered from any preexisting conditions. The crash’s significance is in whether or not it exacerbated an already existing health concern. The phrase “proximate cause” is used in the law to indicate that a particular occurrence or conduct directly led to a certain consequence. Despite the fact that there existed a chronic ailment, the sufferer should still be adjusted for the worsened suffering. Supplemental medical appointments, any required surgical procedures, and any essential rehabilitative services might all add to the total damages. There is no recourse for the victim’s early conditions or injuries. Any additional medical care required as a result of the accident, however, is reimbursable through damages.
It might be challenging to establish a proximate cause in car accident claims. The defendants may try to prove that the claimant’s illness was already much more grave than they initially declared. Nonetheless, the plaintiff might be awarded damages if they can establish that their injuries were exacerbated as a result of the accident.
● The Eggshell Plaintiff Or Thin Skull Rule
At-fault drivers are not allowed to use the “eggshell plaintiff” or “thin skull rule” as a legal defense. This implies the offender cannot dispute that a victim’s pre-existing ailment triggered the victim’s subsequent injuries. The defense might attempt to make it seem like the victim was exaggerating since any ordinary individual wouldn’t have been injured under identical circumstances. An individual’s risk of injury may increase if they have a history of medical conditions or injuries. A person’s age might also play a role in the severity of their injuries. Yet, none of these mitigate the responsibility of a negligent driver. Regardless of the victim’s health conditions, the at-fault driver will still be held accountable for their conduct.
● Instances When Car Crashes Worsened Pre-Existing Conditions
The force exerted in a car crash to an existing injury might make it much worse or even fatal. Some of the various ways in which a car accident might exacerbate a pre-existing medical condition include the following:
- Back Issues – Deteriorating disk disorder and arthritis are two common causes of recurrent back discomfort. A car accident can make these issues much worse, causing the patient excruciating agony that they would have been capable of handling otherwise.
- Brain injuries – Traumatic brain injury survivors are at high risk for further damage. It’s possible that subsequent head injuries might have a more detrimental effect. An individual recovering from a minor concussion can sustain a far more substantial injury in an accident, including impaired memory and motor function abnormalities.
- Bone Fractures – A vehicular collision might cause an existing damaged bone to re-fracture, making the trauma considerably more severe than before.
An arrangement might be reached in which the negligent driver reimburses the victim for worsening their pre-existing conditions in any of these and perhaps other comparable circumstances.
It might be difficult to negotiate a claim that covers the costs of worsened pre-existing conditions. Even if you’ve been injured, insurance firms will strive to reduce the amount of money you may receive. They may conduct an extensive analysis of the incident and try to learn about the impact your injuries have had on your life thus far. Notwithstanding the added complexity, a pre-existing condition can occasionally be advantageous, as it can help build a more accurate representation of the plaintiff’s health prior to the event. An expert vehicle accident attorney can advise you on whether or not your injuries constitute an aggravation of a chronic medical condition and whether or not you may be able to claim damages as a result.