When people are injured in a car accident, the physical signs of injury can heal within a few months, in spite of remaining pain. Chronic pain is defined as pain lasting for a minimum of 6 months. In many situations, the pain begins due to an auto accident. Chronic pain is a difficult disability to measure and often times leaving a lack of medical evidence. If long term chronic pain disability can be proven as a result of the crash, then those injured may have a legal right to compensation. If there is no proof of pain, then benefits and compensation may be denied.
When clients suffer from chronic pain in spite of “inconclusive tests” ; insurance companies focus on these points to avoid paying out benefits and damages. When this happens, its the job of your personal injury lawyer to find other ways to prove that your disabling post accident pain legitimately exists.
Your lawyer should examine all available evidence from the day of the accident. This includes research on accident reports both written and in photo.
Depending upon the details of the crash, medical reports and your symptoms, your lawyer may choose to carry out further investigation. Thorough examination of the accident scene or eyewitness reports may yield valuable evidence that would otherwise be lost.
Personal injury lawyers work with accident reconstruction experts who understand the way different types of crashes affect vehicles and vehicle occupants on impact. Combining specific information, from all available sources, these specialists are able to recreate and explain causation, fault and the mechanisms of injury.
Factors Affecting Severity of Injury
- Speed and force of impact
- Type, make, model, conditions and age of vehicles involved
- Damage to vehicles and other property
- Occupant awareness
- Gender and physical build of the occupant
- Age of occupant
- Weather conditions
- Pre-existing conditions
Establish Plaintiff Credibility
It is essential that personal injury lawyers establish the honest, reliable and hard working credibility of their injured client. The following area should be well documented:
- Repeated medical appointments in attempts to get well
- Adoption of prescribed medical treatments
- Positive work history
- Employment satisfaction
- Job attendance
- Attempts to return to pre-accident function
Surveillance and tests of credibility will be used by defending insurers. It is important that plaintiffs are honest, do not exaggerate and are consistent with their responses. It is important that your lawyer is able to dispel the argument that your injuries are motivated by financial gain.
Highly Specialized Medical Experts
It is not enough to have the results of a catscan, x-ray or magnetic resonance imaging. It is crucial to have a qualified chronic pain expert who can:
- Pinpoint overlooked physical diagnoses in chronic pain that are commonly incomplete or inaccurate.
- Understand normal versus deviant results. With appropriate evidence and multidisciplinary knowledge, experts can demonstrate how these irregularities affect the way body systems work together as a whole to produce pain and disability.
Demonstrative evidence is a valuable component of any personal injury case. It allows the jury to visually absorb large amounts of information quickly. As the complexity and volume of information increases – so does the need for demonstrative evidence. Demonstrative evidence in chronic pain cases may include: Accident reconstruction illustrations, enlarged accident photos, medical illustrations, neuro-imaging results, symptom severity charts, medical attendance charts and employment attendance charts.
Chronic Pain Cycle
Prolonged pain can lead to both psychological and physiologic consequences. Medical experts for the plaintiff should diagnose and report on other related symptoms such as: health perception, physical function, role-physical, role-emotional social functioning and mental health.
People involved in motor vehicle accidents do not always have pain immediately following the crash. The effects of head and soft tissue injuries may not be obvious until a few days later. In many cases these invisible injuries develop causing pain and issues such as loss of mobility, headaches, poor concentration, memory loss, and vision problems. You may be instructed to keep brief notes of continuing symptoms. This information is valuable evidence to build your case.
Pain typically motivates people to seek treatment. A plaintiff’s history of regular medical appointments should be well documented.
Pre-injury v. Post Injury
Your personal injury lawyer should collect evidence of your past history, regarding physical abilities, hobbies, education, family and work responsibilities. This pre-injury information should be measured against post injury abilities and lifestyle changes.
Properly given testimony from family members and work colleagues can provide useful leverage in settlement negotiations and at trial.
Kahler Personal Injury Lawyers have achieved exceptional awards for clients who suffer from chronic pain. Its exhausting and frightening to face pain everyday. It takes away income, family time and hobbies. We use a combination of legal knowledge, scientific studies and investigative skills to demonstrate and prove the legitimacy of your chronic pain claim.