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Whiplash

Whiplash is very common and people often exhibit the symptoms following an accident. However, it remains one of the least well-understood injuries, despite being a regular occurrence. Few people actually understand that if they have suffered whiplash, depending on the circumstances, they may be able to seek compensation as a result.

The law regarding whiplash is not well understood, mainly because it falls under a larger and more well-known collection of legal rules, and is often eclipsed by them. This guide will cover everything that you need to know regarding whiplash related injuries and claims. For help regarding your situation today call 01252354412 or fill out the online form at the top of this page.

What is whiplash?

Contrary to what you may think, whiplash is quite specific in its meaning. Essentially, whiplash occurs when your head and neck are forced to unexpectedly jolt. This can happen in any number of circumstances: most commonly it will happen when a car or other vehicle crashes into your car at speed. Alternatively, it can also happen if you have tripped and fallen because of an uneven pavement or unstable surface. Whiplash symptoms are quite numerous and include muscle fatigue or strain, dizziness, and tiredness.

A very important point to note in considering whether or not you have suffered whiplash is the onset of symptoms. While most symptoms will start to exhibit relatively quickly following an accident, it can in certain instances take a few days before the symptoms become noticeable. Call 01252354412 or fill out the online format the top of this page to discuss your potential claim. 

How does UK law classify whiplash?

Whiplash injuries are essentially an injury to you as a person. Earlier it was mentioned that the rules regarding whiplash are often eclipsed by a far more well-known body of rules. These rules are personal injury laws. For further advice and to discuss your potential claim call 01252354412 or fill out the online format the top of this page.

What can be done if I have suffered whiplash and what will I need to prove?

If you have suffered whiplash, then you have suffered a personal injury and so you may be entitled to raise a personal injury claim for compensation. For help at this stage call 01252354412 or fill out the online form at the top of this page.

If you are attempting to raise a claim for compensation having suffered whiplash, you will need to follow a set of well-established rules and processes under UK personal injury law. Any personal injury claim is centred on demonstrating to a court that you were owed a duty by someone else not to be exposed to harm, and that they failed to discharge this duty. In effect, you will need to be able to demonstrate that someone was negligent.

Demonstrating negligence is not a particularly easy process, and involves two things being proved:

  • The existence of a duty of care that was owed to you.

Whiplash injuries tend to originate from car or road traffic accidents. In most cases, it can be easy to show that you were owed a duty of care by other drivers. In the UK, all road users – car drivers, bus drivers, motorbike drivers etc. – are all expected to drive with ordinary care and skill, and not to do anything that is likely to result in someone else suffering harm e.g. whiplash.

The situation would be slightly different if your whiplash resulted from a trip or fall in a public place, e.g. park or a pavement. Generally it is the responsibility of the local authority to maintain all public places. Therefore they will owe a duty of care to all members of the public.

  • Evidence that the duty of care owed to you was not honoured.

Establishing that the duty of care owed to you was not honoured is often the more difficult task. This is where you will have to establish negligence on the part of the person that your claim is against.

It is important to be aware that no court will easily find that someone has been negligent. There must be clear evidence that another person’s actions made a material contribution to your being injured and suffering whiplash.

In the context of road traffic accidents, it can be helpful in proving negligence if you can evidence a breach of the Highway Code on the part of the Defender. The situation is slightly more complex when dealing with whiplash resulting from trips or falls in public places. Those claims will need to demonstrate to a court that the local authority having responsibility for the area, had allowed it to fall into such a condition such as to cause someone to suffer injury.

What can I expect if my claim is successful?

If you are able to demonstrate that your suffering from whiplash was due to the negligence of someone else, then you will in most instances be entitled to some form of monetary compensation. The value of any award will depend on your particular circumstances: the severity of the whiplash; the impact it has had on you; the need for any specialist care; and any expenses incurred in treating the whiplash, e.g. visits to the hospital. Call 01252354412 or fill out the online form at the top of this page for help regarding your potential claim today. 

It is important to note that if anything you did contributed to your suffering whiplash, e.g. not paying attention to where you were going, this can result in any award granted to you being reduced to reflect your contributory negligence.

Key points

  • Whiplash injuries are covered by UK personal injury law.
  • Whiplash injuries can give rise to a compensation claim.
  • A claim for compensation will only be successful if you are able to prove negligence on the part of the person, public body or organisation that you allege caused your injury.
  • Any compensation that you are awarded for a successful compensation claim will be reduced if you have contributed to the accident that caused you to suffer from whiplash.

This guide is not intended to constitute legal advice and you are strongly advised to seek independent legal advice on matters that affect you

For help at this stage call 01252354412 or fill out the online form at the top of this page.

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Jurisdiction

UK

Last Updated

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

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Categories

Accident Claims Personal Injury

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