Mike Bottaro car accident attorney

Whiplash Injury Lawyer in Rhode Island

Man suffering whiplash injury after car crashThe force of a car crash can cause severe injuries, including whiplash, which happens when a person’s head quickly jerks violently back and forth and damages the neck and upper back. Whiplash is more common and more severe than many realize, especially because it can remain undetected for hours or even days after a collision even as the extent of the injury worsens. 

If you suffered a whiplash injury in a car accident in Rhode Island that was not your fault, you could be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries and related losses. At Bottaro Law, we can advocate for your rights and negotiate with the insurance companies to seek maximum compensation for you. 

Contact us today for a no-obligation consultation with a whiplash injury attorney in Rhode Island. 

What Is a Whiplash Injury?

“Whiplash” is an informal term that refers to various soft-tissue injuries that can impact the neck and upper back. According to recent research, roughly 1 million people suffer whiplash injuries in the United States each year.

Car accidents frequently cause whiplash injuries because of the violent jerking motions that vehicle occupants experience upon impact. When a moving vehicle collides with another car or other object, the moving vehicle stops a split second before its passengers do. As a result, occupants are often abruptly thrown forward and backward multiple times.

This sudden back-and-forth motion can “whip” the head and neck forcefully enough to damage soft tissue. In serious cases, whiplash can cause direct injuries to vertebrae, spinal discs, and nerves.

Symptoms of a Whiplash Injury

Whiplash can present a wide range of symptoms following a traffic collision, including:

  • Stiffness and pain in the neck
  • Neck pain that worsens with movement
  • Decreased range of motion in the neck
  • Headaches, especially ones starting at the base of the skull
  • Stiffness and pain in the shoulders, upper back, and arms
  • Tingling sensations and numbness in the arms
  • Unusual fatigue and sleep disturbances
  • Blurred vision, dizziness, and ringing in the ears
  • Unusual depression, irritability, or mood problems
  • Unusual difficulty with concentration or memory

Some whiplash injury victims who seek treatment notice improvement in their conditions within weeks. However, in more severe cases, or if whiplash injuries are left untreated, victims may suffer from chronic pain and long-term complications. These complications are more likely to occur after a high-speed crash or among people with pre-existing conditions, severe initial symptoms, and the elderly.

Treating Whiplash After a Car Accident

After a car accident in Rhode Island, your doctor may recommend the following treatments to alleviate the pain of your whiplash injuries and restore full range of motion in your neck:

  • Rest and immobilization – Foam collars are commonly used to stabilize the neck and prevent further injury. Doctors may also prescribe bed rest to give your body the time it needs to heal. 
  • Temperature therapy – Temperature therapy involves applying hot or cold packs to the neck and upper back to relieve muscle strain or other symptoms.
  • Medications – Over-the-counter (OTC) medications can alleviate mild to moderate pain, while prescription drugs or steroidal injections may be necessary for more severe or long-term pain. 
  • Physical therapy – A physical therapist may prescribe specific exercises or stretches you can do at home to relieve pain over time. 

Filing a Whiplash Claim After a Rhode Island Car Accident

Whether your whiplash injury is minor or severe, your actions can affect your right to pursue compensation for your injuries, either through an insurance settlement or a personal injury lawsuit. Here is what you can do after a crash:

  • Seek prompt medical attention to have your injuries diagnosed, treated, and included in your official medical records.
  • Collect information and evidence for your claim, including the other driver’s contact and insurance details, witness statements, and photos of the scene.
  • Contact a knowledgeable attorney to handle the legal paperwork, file your insurance claim, and negotiate with the insurers on your behalf.

Proving Liability for a Whiplash Injury in Rhode Island

If you want to pursue compensation for your whiplash injury and other losses, you must prove that the other driver was at fault for the accident. Unfortunately, this can be difficult because whiplash is an invisible injury. The following types of information can prove vital in establishing that you sustained whiplash and that you suffered it because of the car accident:

  • Medical records that describe doctor’s appointments, diagnostic tests, imaging results, doctor’s notes, recommended treatments, or prescriptions related to the whiplash injury
  • Documentation of your crash-related financial losses, such as medical bills, lost wages from missed time at work, and costs associated with traveling to medical appointments 
  • Evidence of how the accident happened, including photos or videos of the collision scene, statements from eyewitnesses, and testimony from reliable experts
  • Journal entries that detail the pain and personal limitations you experience in your day-to-day life as a result of the whiplash injury

Compensation for Whiplash Injuries in Rhode Island

If you were injured in a car accident, you might be entitled to compensation for the following losses:

  • The costs of any medical care you require for your whiplash injury or any other injuries you suffered in the accident
  • Lost wages if you are unable to work while you recover from your injuries
  • Projected losses in your future earning potential, if you suffer permanent injuries
  • The subjective costs of the pain and suffering you endure due to the accident
  • The cost of repairing or replacing any property that was damaged in the crash
  • Incidental costs, such as mileage expenses for travel to medical appointments

Contact a Whiplash Lawyer in Rhode Island for Help Today

If you are in pain because of a whiplash injury you sustained in a car accident in Rhode Island, contact the legal team at Bottaro Law right away. We offer free and confidential consultations, so there’s no risk in discussing your case with an experienced whiplash lawyer in Rhode Island.