If you have pre-existing conditions, an accident caused by another person’s negligence can be much more dangerous than it would be for someone who is otherwise healthy. Unfortunately, defendants and their insurance companies may try to use your pre-existing conditions against you – but legally, they shouldn’t matter.
Fieger Law’s team of personal injury attorneys in Michigan can assist you in ensuring that defendants and their insurance companies pay their full and fair share after an accident, no matter what pre-existing conditions you may have. Contact us today to set up a free consultation on your personal injury case.
Pre-Existing Conditions in Personal Injury Cases
According to the National Safety Council, 62 million people – 1 in 5 Americans – sought medical attention for accidental injuries in 2021 alone. These injuries are caused by a wide variety of factors, including workplace accidents, car accidents, falls, and products incidents. When any injury is caused by another person or entity’s negligence or wrongdoing, the injured person has a legal right to pursue compensation against the wrongful party.
That compensation should fully and fairly compensate the accident victim for the injuries they sustained because of the other party’s wrongdoing. When the accident victim has pre-existing injuries, though, proving which injuries were pre-existing and which were newly caused by the accident can be difficult to determine. Unfortunately, defendants and their insurance companies often attempt to argue that new injuries were pre-existing to avoid or minimize legal liability.
Our team of Michigan personal injury lawyers at Fieger Law has extensive experience in taking on insurance companies and fiercely advocating for our clients’ rights. If you or a loved one have pre-existing conditions and are injured in an accident, contact our office as soon as possible.
Common Pre-Existing Conditions
Common examples of pre-existing conditions include all types of medical ailments, including injuries, diseases, conditions, and disorders. More specifically, pre-existing conditions that may be made worse by accidents commonly include:
- Arthritis and other joint disorders
- Neck pain and back pain
- Muscle injuries, including strains and sprains
- Previously healed injuries, including fractures
- Mental health conditions, including PTSD and depression
- Head injuries and brain trauma
- Autoimmune disorders
How Pre-Existing Conditions Affect Personal Injury Lawsuits
An accident victim with pre-existing conditions can recover compensation for injuries that stem from new symptoms, or from worsened pre-existing symptoms caused by the accident. The key point is causation – to establish liability for damages, an injured party must prove that the damages were caused by the accident as it occurred. With pre-existing conditions, a defendant will likely attempt to argue that the injuries were not caused by the accident, but instead by the plaintiff’s own medical condition.
Pre-Existing Conditions Do Not Bar Compensation for Victims
One common misconception is that pre-existing conditions bar personal injury victims from recovering compensation for their injuries, and that is simply not true. Because of a legal doctrine known as “the eggshell plaintiff rule,” defendants have a duty to pay compensation for all the injuries they caused – including those made worse or triggered due to pre-existing conditions. Even if a plaintiff’s pre-existing conditions are unknown to the defendant, the defendant can still be liable to pay compensation for injuries worsened due to the accident’s impact on pre-existing conditions.
In short, pre-existing conditions should not affect your decision on whether to inquire about a lawsuit. After a no-risk consultation with one of our personal injury lawyers, Michigan accident victims with pre-existing conditions can get a better idea of their claim’s likelihood of success.
Insurance Companies Will Exploit Pre-Existing Conditions
If you have pre-existing conditions and are involved in an accident, you can expect that the insurance companies involved will make matters more complicated. An insurance company’s business model rests on paying as little money as possible out to claimants, and if questions arise as to what amounts a company may or may not be liable for, insurance companies will always argue for the lesser amount.
To battle an insurance company attempting to exploit your pre-existing conditions, you will need to compile a significant amount of evidence showing your conditions before and after the accident occurred. In some cases, that will require an expert witness, and in all cases, it will require documentation. A Fieger Law attorney can assist you in compiling this information so you can take on the insurance company and build the best case possible.
Contact Fieger Law Today for a Free Consultation
Fieger Law has been representing personal injury victims for generations, and our track record speaks for itself. We’ve received more million-dollar verdicts and settlements than any other law firm in American history, and our results are driven by our commitment to our clients.
Having pre-existing conditions is not a bar to recovery, even though insurance companies may try to take advantage of your medical history. To obtain the compensation to which you may be entitled, you need a team of attorneys who are unafraid to take on insurance companies, and who have a record of winning for their clients. You need Fieger Law.
Contact our office today to set up a free consultation on your prospective personal injury case.