Pre-Existing Medical Conditions Effect on an Injury Claim
June 28, 2023
Most people would agree that if you’re injured in an accident that was someone else’s fault, you shouldn’t be the one responsible for paying the damages related to it. However, if you sustained injuries that were somehow related to or worsened by a pre-existing medical condition, you may be unsure of how to go about filing an insurance claim. While these cases can be more complicated than others, it’s still possible to get compensated for your expenses, and working with an experienced personal injury attorney can help. For legal help in the Flowood, Mississippi area, including Brandon, Clinton, Pearl, Richland, and Rankin County, call The Stutzman Law Firm, PLLC, to learn more about your options. An attorney at the firm will use their knowledge to assist your needs and lead you toward seeking compensation.
What Are “Pre-Existing Medical Conditions?”
A pre-existing medical condition can refer to a past injury, illness, chronic condition, or health issue that an individual has before another accident or injury takes place. It’s vital to be aware of any pre-existing conditions you may have in the event you’re involved in an accident and have to file a personal injury claim. There are literally hundreds of examples, but some of the more common that can exacerbate a new injury are:
Chronic back pain
A sprain or strain
Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
How Do They Affect a Personal Injury Claim?
One of the most common questions attorneys get regarding these cases is, “How does a pre-existing condition affect my injury claim?” This is a very important question to address because, during the claims process, you’ll need to provide evidence that clearly indicates how your previous condition affected you and how this differs from the recent accident you were involved in. While it’s true that you can’t ask for damages for injuries you had before an accident occurred, you are able to seek damages for injuries received after the accident, even if they’re related to or made worse by your pre-existing condition.
Specifically, if the accident caused your condition to get worse, then the at-fault party can be held liable for those damages. However, this can be quite difficult to prove, and insurance adjusters are notorious for pushing back against claims like this. The best thing you can do for yourself in a situation like this is to work with an experienced attorney who knows exactly what kind of evidence will work best to prove your case.
One of the more colorfully named rules in a personal injury case involving a pre-existing condition is known as the “eggshell plaintiff” rule or the “eggshell skull” rule. This rule was established to ensure that even those with the most severe pre-existing conditions are not unduly penalized if they’re later injured in an accident that wasn’t their fault.
Imagine someone who has extremely fragile bones due to a degenerative disease and then falls on an icy patch of sidewalk. For most people, this might result in minor injuries but nothing too severe. However, the “eggshell plaintiff” may break several bones and require countless surgeries. Even in these extreme cases, the injured party is still entitled to be compensated for their damages.
Compassionate Legal Assistance
Anytime you’re involved in an accident, it can be a stressful and confusing time. However, if you have a pre-existing condition, it will complicate your claim even more. When this happens, you need to seek out trusted legal help, and The Stutzman Law Firm, PLLC in Flowood, Mississippi, can provide this. Contact the firm today to schedule a consultation so you can get the compensation you deserve and get back on the road to recovery.