If you have been involved in a car accident, slip-and-fall or other accident and pursue damages for your injuries, defense attorneys and insurance agents will investigate your claim thoroughly in an effort to find reasons that their client/customer was not liable for your injuries. One of the first steps in this process is to investigate you, your behavior and physical health, and other facts surrounding the accident. Yes, as the party who suffered injury, it will be you who becomes the target of scrutiny. Your opponent will look for any reason to blame you for the accident.
One of the first things the other side will look for in this game of “blame the victim” is a pre-existing condition. In fact, the hunt for a pre-existing condition is a regular function of an insurance agent’s job description.
What Is A Pre-Existing Condition
A pre-existing condition is a medical condition or earlier bodily injury you suffered prior to the accident at hand. Some examples of pre-existing conditions include: a herniated disk, asthma, arthritis, head, neck or back injuries that have healed or are in the process of healing, and other medical conditions that you may have been born with (congenital conditions).
Impact Of A Pre-Existing Condition On Your Claim For Damages
In limited circumstances, a pre-existing condition can prevent you from recovering damages at all. For example, if you had a broken leg at the time of your auto accident and the accident did not cause further injury to your leg or cause any other damage, you will not be able to recover for the broken leg that you already had.
However, if your broken leg was in the process of healing or almost healed at the time of your car crash and the leg is re-broken or hurt worse than it was before, then you can receive compensation for aggravation of your pre-existing condition. This means that you will receive damages for the extent to which the accident caused you further injury or re-injury.
Of course, if you suffer injuries in the car crash that are completely unrelated to your pre-existing medical condition, then you can recover 100% of the damages caused by the accident.
As I said before, insurance agents and defense attorneys will attempt to use any pre-existing medical condition that you have against you in order to deny liability, even if it is unrelated to the actual injuries you sustain. This is why it is so important to hire a knowledgeable personal injury attorney to pursue your case. Your lawyer will be able to comb through your medical records with you to prove that your pre-existing condition was unrelated or only partially related to your new injuries.
The qualified personal injury attorneys at Murphy & Garner, LLC, offer free consultations to injured people and their families. If you have been injured as the result of someone else’s negligence, we will evaluate your case and let you know what your legal options are – whether that means a negotiated settlement or a lawsuit.
Contact the experienced attorneys at Murphy & Garner today at (678) 563-1584.