Why Soft-Tissue Injury Claims can be Difficult to Prove

Posted on behalf of Peter T. Nicholl in Car Accidents Published on October 20, 2021 and updated on January 31, 2024.

grabbing back of neck in carThere is a widely held misconception that many soft-tissue injuries are not that serious. Many people think an injury must not be that bad if there are no broken bones.

While there may be times when this is true, soft-tissue injuries can be just as debilitating as a fractured bone injury. Soft-tissue injury victims could have significant pain and limited mobility for much longer than people dealing with broken bones.

Sometimes people with soft-tissue injuries need more ongoing treatment. Once a broken bone heals, the victim may need a little treatment afterward, but he or she may have only a few ongoing problems. Of course, it all depends on the injury, but the point is soft-tissue injuries can be quite severe.

Despite the severity of some of these injuries, insurance companies routinely undervalue or deny these claims. Below, our experienced attorneys discuss why and cover the challenges of pursuing a soft-tissue injury case.

Examples of Soft-Tissue Injuries

Many people have heard of whiplash. It is a common soft-tissue injury that occurs in car crashes. When the head gets whipped back and forth quickly it can result in pain in the neck, shoulders and back. Victims may also experience limited range of motion.

Other examples of soft-tissue injuries include:

  • Sprains
  • Strains
  • Tendonitis
  • Contusions
  • Bursitis

How Insurance Companies Deal with Soft-Tissue Injury Claims

Many crash victims do not realize the insurance company is looking for any reason to deny or undervalue their claim. When a victim files a claim for a soft-tissue injury, insurance adjusters may feel they have a built-in excuse to downplay the situation.

Even though the pain from these injuries can be significant and seriously disrupt your everyday life, pain does not show up on an X-ray or other type of imaging scan. These scans typically fail to show the presence of an injury. The effects of these injuries are highly subjective and based on what the victim reports to his or her doctors.

Since there is such a significant gray area with these injuries, insurance companies like to argue that the victim is exaggerating his or her pain level and other symptoms. The insurance company has an easier time making this argument if the victim has not been diligent in seeking medical help.

Insurance companies also have valid concerns about fraudulent claims involving soft-tissue injuries. Some injury victims think they can game the system and get compensation for a soft-tissue injury even though they have not suffered injuries. This has caused many insurance companies to make it more difficult for injury victims to get compensation for soft-tissue injuries.

You can still recover compensation for your injury, but you will need strong evidence. You should also work with an experienced attorney who knows how to validate these types of claims. Managing this type of case on your own is extremely difficult.

Evidence That May Strengthen a Claim for Compensation

One of the most important steps to take after a car crash is to get medical treatment as soon as possible. That way doctors can hopefully identify injuries early and start treatment, which may help you heal quicker and shorten your recovery time.

Seek Treatment Right Away

Seeking treatment right away also helps to show a strong connection between the injury and the car crash that caused it. If the insurance company sees that the injury occurred just a few hours before you saw a doctor or were treated at a hospital, it becomes harder to argue you were injured by something besides the crash.

However, you need to make sure to report all your symptoms to the doctors who treat you. Sometimes soft-tissue injuries become more painful over time, which means you may not feel much pain right after the crash.

That means you should not ignore minor symptoms or minor discomfort. Tell the doctor so it will be noted in your medical records. When you attend follow-up appointments, report any new symptoms or worsening of existing symptoms.

When medical records show consistent updates about an injury after it is diagnosed, insurance companies may have a harder time devaluing or denying the claim.

Make sure to never exaggerate your injuries. If you continue your treatment and take other steps outlined by your Maryland car crash lawyer, that should be enough to help validate your claim. Exaggerating your injuries hurts your credibility and may drag out the legal process as the insurance company tries to deny your claim.

Limit Statements to the Insurance Company

Another important step for victims to take is to limit what they say to the insurance company. Your injury may feel minor at first and get more severe over time. However, if you tell the insurance company you are not badly hurt right after the crash, it may be more difficult to obtain a significant amount of compensation.

You do not need to go into detail with the insurance company, especially early in the process. You can tell the insurance company to talk to your lawyer, which is something you are within your rights to do. Your lawyer knows how to protect your claim.

Your lawyer may also be able to explain how you can keep a journal describing your pain and other symptoms. This can be a great way to document pain and suffering, as these damages are not tangible and are based on a variety of subjective evidence.

Call to Schedule a Free Legal Consultation

If you were injured by a negligent driver, our firm is here to help you pursue full compensation for your damages. There are no upfront fees or legal obligations, which means no risk to you.

Many crash victims who try to deal with the insurance company on their own end up recovering less compensation than those who hire an attorney. Insurers are committed to undervaluing and even denying claims to protect their profits.

Licensed. Local. Lawyers. Call 410-907-3957.