Whiplash Injuries in Ontario: What to Expect
It is common to have a whiplash injury in most types of car accidents. The neck is exposed and not restrained by a seatbelt. This injury can be more traumatic if the vehicle’s airbags do not deploy.
Depending upon the force, angle and severity of impact, a person’s unprotected head moves violently in a whipping motion inside the vehicle: first moving toward the point of impact, then away. An injured motorist’s age and pre-existing health issues can often indicate vulnerability to permanent and serious injuries in these types of collisions. After an accident, it is not only important to document the accident by taking photos of the accident scene, your vehicle, the other driver(s) and the other vehicle(s) involved, but to also monitor your own symptoms, limitations, restrictions and functionality and, once identified, to immediately seek medical treatment.
In Ontario, lawsuits are pursued where whiplash acceleration/deceleration injuries (WAD injuries) occur if the symptoms do not improve within three to six months of treatment. Without the possibility of a fracture or tear, this type of injury is properly referred to as a connective tissue injury. Sometimes, however, it is improperly referred to as a soft tissue injury. Most uncomplicated cervical injuries tend to resolve 85% of the time. The correct way to assess these injuries is to consider the testing, treatment, and medications the injured motorist is forced to undergo following collisions of this nature. If the injuries persist longer than three to six months, it is considered that the injured motorist injuries are no longer in the acute (“healing phase”) and this motorist’s injuries have become permanent and serious. Claims of this nature should be pursued if the injured motorist’s injuries have not healed in this time frame.
If you have sustained a serious whiplash injury as the result of a violent collision, you may be entitled to claim damages against the driver who caused your accident. Whiplash acceleration/deceleration injuries, although a common injury with a relatively short period of recovery in most cases, may result in long-term disability for some people. Depending upon the type of employment the injured motorist has, these injuries may substantially interfere with the injured motorist’s ability to work into the future and can result in an enormous hardship to this injured motorist throughout his/her working life.
If you proceed with a lawsuit, you may be entitled to damages. These damages may include:
- A pain and suffering award;
- Your past and future loss of income if you are unable to do your job as a result of your injuries;
- A claim for attendant care/med/rehab/caregiver damages.
If your injuries are persisting, it is a good idea to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer at Littlejohn Barristers to ensure you do not miss any limitation deadlines and are taking the proper steps towards making a successful claim. In Ontario, the law requires that all personal injury claims must be issued within two years of the accident date. In addition, you should keep track of all your expenses and receipts relating to the accident. It is also important to follow your physician's recommendations for testing, medication and treatment so that you can provide evidence that you took steps to deal with your injuries.
Since this law firm was opened on September 4, 1996, the lawyers at Littlejohn Barristers have helped numerous injury victims recover compensation for their losses. To date, we have recovered in excess of $135,000,000 for our clients. For more information about how our barristers can assist you, please contact us at (705) 725-7355.