It's common to have neck and back pain after a car crash. Even at a slow speed, a car accident can cause severe injuries with long-term side effects like whiplash and nerve damage. That's because your neck and spine are fragile, and your back muscles can be torn, strained, or stretched.
If you hurt your neck or back in a car accident that was not your fault, you need to do two things. First, seek immediate medical attention to diagnose and document your injuries. Then, review your legal rights and options with an experienced Fort Wayne car accident lawyer. You may be entitled to compensation, and an attorney can help you fight for what you deserve.
How much can I get for my Indiana car accident?
Only your lawyer can calculate the total value of your claim. It is safe to assume that your lawyer's assessment will be much higher than the insurance company's. However, lawyers can't just pluck a big number out of the air. They must calculate the true cost of your accident and find evidence to support the settlement demand.
Injury claim compensation is determined by a handful of factors, including fault, available compensation and insurance, injury severity and treatment, and short- and long-term disabilities.
In general, you get more compensation when injuries significantly change your lifestyle, are long-term or permanent, pain level, and necessary medical treatment for recovery.
What should my settlement pay for?
Depending on the details of your accident, compensation for back and neck pain may cover:
- Medical treatment, past, present, and future.
- Pain and suffering, including pain caused by the accident, healing from the crash, or medical treatment for the crash.
- Lost wages and diminished future income potential.
- Property damage to repair or replace your vehicle.
- Replacement services like cooking, cleaning, childcare, and landscaping that you cannot do because of your injuries.
Common back and neck injuries sustained by crash victims
Here are some of the common neck and back injuries often suffered by victims in car accidents:
- Whiplash. One of the most common injuries car accident victims sustain is whiplash. This painful injury happens when delicate neck muscles, bones, and tendons are yanked around by the wild movements associated with a car accident. An orthopedic specialist can treat whiplash. Recovery may include surgeries and physical therapy, chiropractic care, medications, trigger point injections, facet injections, epidural steroid injections, medial branch blocks, or radiofrequency ablation, among other things.
- Herniated disc. Your spine is made up of alternating bone discs (vertebrae) and cushioning. When a disc is dislocated or fractured, the pain can be excruciating.
- Fractures. The many bones in your neck and spine can easily break in a car accident. Compression fractures are another spine injury that occurs when the front of a vertebra is fractured, but not the back, causing increased pressure on the spine.
- Spinal Cord Injuries (SCIs). Your spine protects a column of nerves that run from your brain to the various parts of your body. These nerves control your body's movement and function. Any damage to them could severely limit your mobility and decrease your control over bodily functions. Paralysis is also possible.
- Pinched nerve. The impact of a car crash temporarily destabilizes the bodies inside. This raises the risk of dislocation and joint damage for the driver and passenger(s). It also allows for movement in the spine. When the crash is over, and the body regains stability, parts fall back into place - or not. For example, a bulging disc made loose in the collision could painfully squeeze a nerve. It is also possible that a nerve was pinched by healthy discs temporarily separated during the crash.
We hold negligent drivers accountable.
Recovering from car accident injuries that cause back and neck pain can be a long road. Common treatments for such injuries may include physical therapy, multiple surgeries, the use of disability- and mobility equipment, and occupational therapy, among other medical treatments.
You need enough compensation to cover your crash-related medical expenses and provide for the comfort stolen from you by a reckless driver—and our car accident attorneys can help.
Contact us for a free case evaluation if you were injured or a loved one died in an Indiana car accident. A member of our team is available to hear from you, day or night.