Small Impact, Small Injury?
We see a fair number of minor property damage cases in the course of the year, where individuals report being injured in the accident. Insurance companies take the position that you can’t possibly be injured in a minor “fender-bender” car accident. They equate minor impact with minor or no injuries. Some insurance companies have become even more aggressive and are simply denying the claim altogether, and hiring forensic engineers to write an expensive and detailed report that indicates that the ‘g forces’ from a minor car accident could not have possibly have caused an injury to the body. Does small impact really equate to small injury? The insurance companies seem to think so, their insurance adjusters think so and the defense lawyers they hire to defend the claims in court think so. You might even think so too, until you are in such an accident and are hurt and realize very quickly that how much damage there was to your car, has no real correlation to how your body reacts or how you can be injured even in a minor car accident.
Every car accident is different. Every person is different in terms of how they react; a person’s age, physical health, height, weight, how they are positioned in the car, how the accident happened, the force of the impact, whether there is more than one vehicle involved, the speed of the cars, all are factors that affect how a person can be injured, even when it appears to be a very minor car accident.
We are straight forward with clients when they come in and we see that their vehicle sustained little or no damage in the accident. We also need to know if the other vehicle sustained any damage. We tell such individuals that they can expect the insurance company to fight them tooth and nail and if they offer any money at all in settlement, the settlements will be very modest. If we set their expectations way down at the first meeting, than a prospective client has a much better idea that they may receive some compensation for their accident, even where there is minimal damage to their vehicle.
If you have been the victim of a car accident, big or small, call the lawyers at Karp & Iancu, S.C. if you have any questions.