Will My Pre-existing Medical Condition Keep Me From Collecting Compensation for My Injuries?
Many of those who are involved in accidents are not in 100 percent health, but may suffer from pre-existing medical conditions that are then exacerbated by a subsequent accident. Unfortunately, many insurers attempt to avoid compensating injured parties who find themselves in this situation, claiming that any injuries are merely the result of a pre-existing condition. It is possible, however, to account for pre-existing medical conditions and still recover compensation from someone whose negligence resulted in additional injuries, so if you were hurt in an accident and the at-fault party is claiming that your pre-existing condition bars you from recovery, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Florida who can help protect your interests.
Evaluating a Pre-existing Medical Condition
Under Florida law, car accident victims have the right to recover for related losses, whether through their own PIP insurance policies, the other driver’s insurer, or by filing a personal injury claim against the at-fault party in court. This is true even when the injury sustained is just a worsening or exacerbation of a pre-existing medical condition. However, in these cases, the injured party may need to prove that the condition or injury was exacerbated in the more recent accident.
Fortunately, most people who find themselves in this situation are already being treated for the earlier injury and so can provide proof, through the submission of medical records, that reflects the baseline of the pre-existing condition immediately before the accident. Important treatment-related records that can help prove the existence of a pre-existing condition and its subsequent worsening include: evidence of physical therapy, pain relief injections, and surgery. Diagnostic records like x-rays and MRIs can also play a crucial role in demonstrating the existence of a pre-existing injury.
Comparing a Pre-existing Medical Condition to a New Injury
If, for example, a person was suffering from a pre-existing lower back injury that was worsened after a collision, there should be records of that injury prior to the accident, which can show not only the type, but also the nature of the problems that a person was suffering from, including:
- The level of pain experienced by the injured party;
- The exact location of the condition; and
- Any functional difficulties resulting from the condition.
This information can also be compared to post-accident medical records, revealing the differences between the two conditions. Finally, it is also often necessary to obtain the opinion of an expert who can explain what portion of a person’s injuries (and the medical treatment they received) can be attributed to the pre-existing condition and which symptoms can be attributed to the most recent accident.
Set Up a Free Case Review Today
Accident victims who were already recovering from an injury or suffering from a medical condition at the time of their accident, face an even more painful and expensive recovery. For help seeking compensation for your own medical bills, please call the experienced Fort Lauderdale personal injury attorneys at Boone & Davis today. We can be reached at 954-566-9919 or via online message.