What Is the Average Payout for Whiplash Injuries?

Whiplash is the name for soft tissue injuries in the head, neck, and back resulting from a violent collision. During a vehicle crash or other accident at high speed, the victim’s head and neck may snap or bend very quickly, preventing the muscles from tensing properly and cushioning the force of impact against soft tissues like ligaments and tendons. Whiplash can cause a host of adverse symptoms, potentially interfering with a victim’s ability to work and manage everyday tasks.

Filing a Lawsuit for Whiplash

A personal injury claim allows an injured person to secure compensation for losses caused by another party’s negligence, or failure to exercise reasonable care in a given situation. Many car accident victims experience whiplash, especially when their accidents occur at high speeds. If a negligent driver caused another driver’s whiplash, the injured driver will need to prove the full extent of his or her damages to secure compensation for the injury.

The first step in filing a lawsuit for whiplash is identifying the party responsible for causing the accident. Liability may fall to one or more parties, and a victim will need to identify the liable party and prove he or she caused the victim’s whiplash and other claimed damages. The victim will also require a medical diagnosis of whiplash and proof of his or her associated damages.

Symptoms of Whiplash

Whiplash damages the soft tissues in the head, back, and neck and can easily cause extreme pain and other symptoms. Whiplash victims commonly report difficulty turning their heads, severe headaches, tingling and numbness in the neck, upper back, and head, and disorientation. Whiplash symptoms can persist for several days or weeks and some victims may require surgical correction on affected soft tissues.

A whiplash victim may require extensive immediate medical treatment after his or her injury as well as long-term medical care to treat his or her symptoms. Additionally, the victim may require rehabilitation so he or she can return to work and manage everyday tasks again. If another party caused the victim’s whiplash, the cost of medical treatment and all other related damages will likely come into play in a personal injury claim.

Compensation for Whiplash

A plaintiff in a personal injury lawsuit can claim compensation for any and all damages caused by the defendant’s negligence. Whiplash may be a relatively minor injury in some cases and a severe medical issue in others. The value of a whiplash claim hinges on the overall total cost of economic and noneconomic damages associated with the claim.

Settlement values for whiplash claims vary based on the extent of the damages and the severity of the victim’s whiplash. For example, a relatively small claim for damages associated with whiplash could be anywhere from $2,500 to $10,000. However, if a plaintiff suffered severe whiplash requiring surgery and physical therapy, the overall recovery could be $30,000 or more. When plaintiffs sustain permanent nerve damage associated with a whiplash injury, they could expect $100,000 or more from their successful claims.