Whiplash is the most claimed for injury in the United Kingdom. This makes sense, when you consider that whiplash is also the most common injury sustained in road traffic accidents.
If you have suffered whiplash, then you may be eligible for compensation.
What are my legal rights?
It is your legal right to compensation if you have been injured in an accident through no fault of your own and under the circumstances, the law is on your side. However, there are eligibility criteria that you have to meet in order to have a legitimate claim.
Am I eligible for compensation?
While you may indeed have the legal right to compensation as discussed above, your eligibility for compensation is another matter entirely. The main eligibility criterion you need meet is that under the Limitation Act 1980, you must bring forward your whiplash compensation claim within three years from the date of your accident or from the date your injuries were first diagnosed. If your accident happened more than three years ago, it is unfortunately not likely possible to bring your whiplash claim forward.
Do I have a strong whiplash claim?
This depends on your level of liability and how easy it is to prove that another party was at fault for your accident. The only way to prove negligence and the defendant’s liability is to collect evidence. With regards to whiplash claims, evidence can include dash-cam footage (from witnesses or those involved), CCTV footage, photographs and witness statements; and the stronger the evidence, the stronger your whiplash compensation claim will be.
How much compensation could I claim?
Compensation for whiplash injuries is calculated based on the following:
- The nature of your injuries;
- The extent of your injuries;
- How your injuries have and will affect your life (prognosis);
- How your accident has affected you financially.
The average compensation for whiplash injuries can be split into ‘whiplash grades’, which is how the extent of one’s whiplash is determined. The grades are 1-4. Grade 1 whiplash is minor whiplash, grade 2 whiplash is moderate whiplash, grade 3 whiplash is severe whiplash and grade 4 whiplash is severe whiplash with dislocation or fracture. The higher your grade of whiplash, the more financial compensation you can claim.
Minor whiplash claims usually result in a payout of £1,000-£2,500, while moderate whiplash claims usually result in a pay-out of £2,500-£5,000. Severe whiplash, which can have neurological symptoms, can result in a pay-out in excess of £10,000. Grade 4 whiplash where there is dislocation or fracture can result in a payout exceeding £25,000. However, the amount of compensation you may receive depends on the factors above. All of these factors have to be taken into account when determining a settlement demand.