Filing a Claim with a Pre-Existing Condition in Massachusetts
At a certain age we all have areas of our body that ail us. However, having a pre-existing condition can make filing a personal injury claim much more complex. A pre-existing condition is a medical condition that started before the accident in question took place. What happens though when you are in an accident that aggravates a pre-existing condition?
When filing a personal injury claim, an insurance company will often argue that that they should not have to pay for any condition that was present prior to the accident. It is important to remember that you can only receive compensation if the accident aggravated your pre-existing condition, and you cannot claim benefits for the original injury. Massachusetts law holds negligent parties responsible for any harm that they cause. Accident victims with pre-existing conditions are protected under a law known as the eggshell doctrine. The eggshell doctrine states that a negligent party must take the accident victim as he or she finds them. This means that even if the injured party is more susceptible to injury than the average person, they are still protected under the law.
An underlying pre-existing condition may be an injury from a previous accident, a disease, or just the natural effects of the aging process. Pre-existing conditions often fall into two categories; inactive and active. An inactive pre-existing condition is one that was not showing any symptoms at the time of the accident. A person could have a pre-existing condition and not even be aware of it. Even a pre-existing condition that shows no symptoms can leave a person vulnerable to attacks from the insurance company.
The second type is called an active pre-existing condition, as it is actively being treated at the time of the accident. For active pre-existing conditions, it is important to have your doctor determine how the accident has worsened your symptoms. Common examples of pre-existing medical conditions include: Neck injuries, soft tissue injuries, back strains, arthritis, healed broken bones, degenerative disk disease and arthritis.
Your medical records are crucial in proving that your condition was aggravated by the accident. It is important that you receive medical treatment for the injury as soon as possible. It is best to see the medical providers who were treating you prior to the accident in order to show the progression of your symptoms. Detailed medical records will provide evidence of your condition before the accident, as well as how your condition has worsened since the accident. Your attorney can also work with your doctor to obtain expert testimony to help prove your case.
In addition to documenting the physical changes caused by your injury with diagnostic tests such as X-Rays or MRI’s, it is also important to show any lifestyle changes that may have occurred after the accident. This can include such things as missing time from work, hobbies, recreational activities and exercise. It will be important to document that you had no issues doing any of these activities prior to the accident.
As you work with your personal injury attorney it is important that you are honest about your medical history. It may seem tempting to hide a pre-existing condition, but this is one of the worst things you could do. The omission could damage your credibility. It is important to remember that proving aggravation of a pre-existing condition will not only require medical evidence, but will also require the plaintiff’s own credible testimony.
While the insurance company may try to use your pre-existing condition as an excuse not to pay, you are entitled to fair compensation for the aggravation of your condition. By getting help from an experience personal injury attorney, you can help to ensure that your rights are protected and you receive the compensation you deserve.CONTACT AN EXPERIENCED PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY AT DELSIGNORE LAW
At DelSignore Law we have helped filed claims for individuals dealing with a pre-existing condition. We understand the challenges you face and are here to offer help and handle your case through completion. We pride ourselves in fighting zealously for our clients to ensure you get what is owed to you. Contact us today at 781-686-5924 for a confidential and complimentary review of your case. While on our website, you can learn more about the personal injury claims.