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Can You Receive Compensation for Pre-Existing Conditions After a Car Accident?

Generally speaking, you cannot receive compensation for pre-existing conditions after a car accident. You’re only entitled to recover damages caused by the accident itself.

However, if aggravation of a pre-existing condition occurs, you may be entitled to compensation if you build your personal injury case correctly.

Let our San Diego car accident lawyers discuss what you need to know about pre-existing conditions and car accidents as well as how insurance companies handle accidents involving pre-existing conditions.

What are Pre-Existing Conditions?

Pre-existing conditions are medical conditions that exist before an accident or incident. These medical conditions can range from minor ailments to major illnesses and can affect the outcome of a car accident claim.

Pre-existing conditions may include:

  • Previous back surgery
  • scoliosis
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Cancer, and
  • Other chronic illnesses.

In some cases, pre-existing conditions can include recent injuries, medical treatments, and even medications taken before the accident.

The existence of a pre-existing condition does not always mean that an injured party cannot seek compensation for the harm they suffered. Victims of car accidents need to understand how their pre-existing conditions may affect their rights to seek compensation after a crash.

It is also important to understand how insurance companies typically treat pre-existing conditions when making claims decisions.

How Do Pre-Existing Conditions Affect Your Claim?

When you’re involved in a car accident, it can be difficult to determine how pre-existing conditions will affect your claim. If you have a pre-existing condition and the car accident aggravates it, you may be eligible to receive compensation for your injuries and damages.

However, insurance companies often try to deny or minimize claims when they involve pre-existing conditions. Insurance adjusters may argue that your injuries are due to a pre-existing condition rather than the car accident and therefore, not covered by the policy.

Proving Aggravation of a Pre-Existing Condition

To prove that your condition was caused or exacerbated by the car accident, you must have medical evidence that clearly shows the difference between your pre-existing condition and the new injury; in other words, you must prove the aggravation of a pre-existing condition.

For example, if you have a history of chronic back pain and were involved in a car accident where you experienced new back pain, you will need to provide medical records that demonstrate the difference between the pre-existing condition and the new injury. Additionally, you will need to demonstrate that the new injury was caused by the car accident and not from any other source.

Note that even if a pre-existing condition is aggravated or exacerbated by the car accident, you may still be able to receive compensation for your injuries. However, you will need to prove that the accident caused your injuries or made them worse.

It is advisable to consult with a qualified car accident attorney who can help you build a strong case to get the compensation you deserve.

How Do Insurance Companies Handle Pre-Existing Conditions?

Insurance companies have rules for assessing the extent of damage and liability when it comes to car accidents and pre-existing conditions. These include but are not limited to the following:

  • The age of the injury,
  • The medical history of the individual,
  • How the injury has affected their daily life,
  • Any treatments or therapies used to address the pre-existing condition, and
  • Any treatments or therapies used to address the injury from the car accident.

Depending on the type of injury you sustained, the severity of the accident, and the insurance company’s interpretation of the situation, the insurer may decide to pay only a portion of your claim or deny it altogether.

If you believe your claim has been denied because of a pre-existing condition, you should contact an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

What If My Injuries Worsen a Pre-Existing Condition?

You may still be eligible for compensation if you have suffered an injury in a car accident that worsened a pre-existing condition. In most cases, insurance companies will attempt to deny any claims related to the pre-existing condition, but this is not always the case.

To prove that your injury was aggravated by the accident, you must provide evidence of the severity of your pre-existing condition before and after the crash. Medical records and expert testimony can help build your case and demonstrate how the accident has affected your health.

If your pre-existing condition was aggravated by the accident, you might be able to recover additional damages. This could include medical expenses related to the injury, lost wages, and pain and suffering. It is important to note that these damages must be proportional to the extent of your injury.

For example, if your pre-existing condition was minor before the accident and only became moderately worse after the accident, you may not be able to recover extensive damages.

Remember that proving an aggravation of a pre-existing condition is more difficult than proving the existence of a new injury caused by the accident. Consult with a qualified personal injury lawyer to ensure that your rights are protected and that you receive the compensation you deserve.

Fight to Recover the Compensation You Deserve With Help from HHJ Trial Attorneys

Recovering the compensation, you believe you’re rightfully owed starts with enlisting the proper help. Why not contact us today to speak with our experienced car accident attorneys?

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