Whiplash Injury Settlements: Everything You Need to Know

Whiplash injury lawyers HoustonWhiplash is one of the most common injuries resulting from car accidents in Houston.

Because of the immense forces that occur during accidents, the head can be violently thrust back and forth, causing damage to the soft tissues and vertebral discs in the neck area.

Symptoms may continue after a few days and lead to other longer-term problems. This should not be something you simply have to live with as the victim of an accident.

It may be possible to claim damages for your whiplash injury. Here’s what you need to know before making a claim.

If you've been involved in a car accident in Houston, TX, call our car accident attorney for immediate assitance (832) 745-4878 or contact us online.

What is whiplash?

A whiplash injury occurs due to the forceful back-and-forth motion exerted on the neck. This is particularly common in auto accidents where vehicles decelerate suddenly.

In many whiplash cases, victims report little or no pain or discomfort immediately after their accident. However, symptoms can appear over the next 24-48 hours and result in relatively minor discomfort or excruciating pain.

In most cases, the problem resolves in the days after it first appears but, in others, it persists and becomes a more serious problem.

Whiplash symptoms

The following whiplash symptoms may become evident immediately, within a few hours, or in the next day or two after an accident:

Neck pain and stiffness

This is the most common and obvious sign of whiplash.

Depending on the force of the impact and extent of the injury, it may result in excruciating neck pain and stiffness when you move your head.

Restricted range of motion in the neck

One of the reasons why whiplash can be so debilitating is that it often leads to a reduced range of motion in the neck.

This can have far-reaching consequences and restrict your ability to drive or park a car, perform work duties, use a computer or even use the bathroom. The loss of quality of life is often as frustrating as the pain and discomfort.

Tenderness or pain in the shoulder, upper back or arms

When you experience a collision at excessive speeds, the shockwave of the impact may travel downwards in the body causing trauma to your shoulders, upper back, or arms.

Combined with neck pain, these injuries can greatly limit your mobility.

Headaches and sleep disturbance

Debilitating headache pain may radiate from the base of the neck, making sleeping and carrying out one’s daily duties difficult.

Other related whiplash symptoms

Other possible symptoms of whiplash injuries include numbness (especially in the arms), fatigue, dizziness, irritability, tinnitus, and blurred vision in the days following an accident.

It can even lead to mental problems such as difficulty concentrating, memory issues, and depression.

Long-term problems caused by whiplash

While minor injuries typically heal over the course of weeks or months, severe whiplash injuries can lead to long-term chronic pain.

If you seriously damage vertebrae or pinch a nerve, your quality of life may be permanently affected. A partial disability may even result, requiring lifelong treatment/therapy, which can be extremely costly.

The whiplash injury claim process

Whiplash injury settlements Houston TexasBefore you can claim compensation, the fault of the accident must be determined as Texas is an “at fault” state when it comes to insurance claims.

As part of the claims process, you will probably be contacted by the insurance company of the at-fault party. You may feel pressured into accepting a settlement and the insurance company may try to downplay your injury to low-ball you on a quick settlement.

At this point, it is usually time to hand the claim over to a personal injury lawyer if you have not already done so.

Your lawyer will conduct all negotiations with the insurance company.

How can a personal accident lawyer help?

Your personal injury attorney will attempt to negotiate a fair settlement for your whiplash injury with the insurance company by:

An experienced car accident attorney will be familiar with how insurance companies work and with negotiating fair settlements for victims. This can dramatically improve your chances of obtaining the compensation you deserve for your whiplash injuries.

For a free case evaluation with an experienced car accident attorney, call (832) 745-4878 or contact us online.

Common whiplash injury questions answered

Should I see a doctor even if I feel OK?​

Even if you don’t experience any of the above symptoms immediately after your accident, do yourself a favor and see a doctor. This is an extremely important step to take after you've been in a car accident.

Sometimes, whiplash injuries (like many injuries in accidents where the body experiences shock) develop in the days following the accident. A medical checkup by a doctor should be a priority after any serious accident and car accidents are certainly no exception.

Even if you feel OK after the accident, if symptoms develop later and you have no medical report from a doctor, it may damage your compensation claim.

What are the treatments for whiplash?

If you are diagnosed with whiplash, the treatment may vary based on the severity of the injury and whether it affects the muscles, ligaments, tendons, or discs.

Rest, icepacks, and over-the-counter medication may be the recommendation for minor muscle stiffness. A more severe sprain might require strong painkillers and physical therapy.

In the event of spinal disc damage or severe problems with ligaments or nerves, you may even require surgery.

How much might this cost without insurance?

In Houston, any hospital visit is likely to incur significant medical bills. Costs for whiplash injuries vary from minor expenses for over-the-counter medications to extensive costs for overnight stays, prescription medications, physical therapy, or even surgery.

This is not to mention the days lost from work if you are unable to perform your job. Even desk jobs involving computer work can be challenging with a whiplash injury.

Fortunately, in Texas, if the accident that caused your whiplash injury was at least 50 percent the fault of another party, you can claim damages from their insurance company.

Unfortunately, the claims process can be exhausting.

How much can you sue for whiplash?

Without being specific about amounts, Texas law allows you to claim two types of damages. General damages (with no specific monetary value) include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium: the loss of love, affection, companionship, comfort, care, etc.
  • Emotional trauma, such as anguish, humiliation, depression, etc.
Special damages (with a specific monetary value) include:
  • Medical expenses
  • Damage to your vehicle or other property
  • Lost earnings
  • Lost future earnings
General damages are often more contested than special damages by insurance companies because there are no receipts to prove the loss. It is fair to say that the more experienced and skilled your lawyer is, the better chance you have of receiving the payout you deserve.

Get the settlement you deserve for your whiplash injury

With any whiplash injury requiring medication, therapy, and/or surgery, it’s best to consult an experienced attorney to assess your legal options.

Personal injury attorney Ryan A. DeHoyos is experienced at taking on big insurance companies and fighting for the best interests of accident victims both in and out of the Houston courtrooms.

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xavier wheeler
xavier wheeler
21:40 21 May 21
This was honestly the most professional experience I’ve had with a law office. They were very understanding,... responsive, and always kept me in the Loop about what was going on with my case. Ryan is not a dream seller. He keeps it realistic and will be straight up and honest on what he can and can’t do. He and his assistant Ashley are a great team and if i ever got in to a situation like this again he is my go to guy.read more
jadegirl105
jadegirl105
23:05 14 May 21
After my hit and run I was referred to Mr. DeHoyos, and at first I didn't want to hire a lawyer to go up against my own... insurance. After some family convincing and research on Mr. DeHoyos I made the call. I am glad that I did. His office staff and himself were wonderful. They took care of everything from the start. Any time I had a question either his staff or himself reached out to me. I never had to wait long to have any questions answered. At one point there was an issue with an appointment and Mr. DeHoyos tried to rectify the problem himself. When I had the pleasure of speaking with him, he never made it sound like I was an inconvenience to him. They kept me well informed of the next step in the process as we went along. In the end I got more than I expected in my pocket! I can't thank him or his office staff enough for everything they did for me. In one of the worst times I've had his staff and himself were there for me.read more
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S t
17:03 07 May 21
I am extremely grateful for this firm's tireless pursuit for justice in my case. They were responsive to all of my... questions and concerns. They provided updates in a timely fashion and I always knew the next step in the process. This firm really takes the time to hear your story and ensure that you receive justice for injuries forced upon you due to the carelessness of someone else. I highly recommend this firm for anyone who has been hurt in an accident. They are definitely different than other personal injury firms.read more
Greg Adams
Greg Adams
16:13 09 Apr 21
Very professional and excellent at letting me know what to expect. Ryan helped me when no one else would and the... insurance company was trying to take advantage of me. I highly recommend Ryan and his team.read more
Jerimy Robinson
Jerimy Robinson
19:13 02 Apr 21
Ryan and his staff were very professional and personable. They resolved my accident case to the best possible outcome.... Would highly recommend.read more
david walker
david walker
19:54 27 Mar 21
My case was fairly simple, but made even easier to deal with by the fact that everything was taken care of over the... phone and through text.This was a huge help considering I live 45 minutes away from his office, everything I wanted out of the case was achieved as then some.Cannot recommend this firm more!read more
Sonia Castro
Sonia Castro
15:12 26 Mar 21
Ryan and his team were very informative and responsive. They did a great job on our case. Ryan is very accessible and... easy to talk to. I would definitely recommend DeHoyos Law if you are injured in a car wreck. These guys set a new standard for accident lawyers.read more
Sanetra Jones
Sanetra Jones
03:37 09 Jan 21
I NEVER NEVER feel compelled to write a review on services or products I buy. So, if you've ever wondered if these... Google reviews are accurate, I can tell you from my experience with Attorney DeHoyos they are. He will fight to make sure you receive everything you deserve. He and his staff are fast and friendly. They keep you up to date on your case with calls and emails. In a field of horses/attorneys, his office is the unicorn! Call him, you won't regret it.read more
L. Minor
L. Minor
15:53 01 Jan 21
My experience with DeHoyos Law firm was a great one. Ryan was already highly recommended by a family member. Sure... enough, this law firm delivered again. Ryan was good to us, and made himself available to us whenever we had any questions. I felt very comfortable with him handling my case. He always kept me in the loop and made sure I understood everything that was going on. His staff is remarkable. Ms Ashley is such a beautiful person. To DeHoyos law firm and staff, Thank you very much for this experience. Hope this year brings you love, joy, and prosperity.read more
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