Understanding Car Accident Neck Injury - Adamson Ahdoot

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Your Guide to Personal Injury Claims for Neck Injuries in Car Accidents

February 20, 2024 Alan Ahdoot
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Suffering a neck injury is a common consequence of a car accident, particularly in rear-end collisions that cause sudden head movements, potentially damaging neck muscles and spinal nerves. 

Prompt medical evaluation is essential, as these injuries may require extensive testing and treatment, including surgery or rehabilitative therapy. 

Recognizing the significance of seeking legal guidance can empower victims to navigate the complexities of their injuries and pursue rightful compensation effectively.

Neck Injury Car Accident Statistics

Annually, approximately three million cases of whiplash occur in the United States. Of these, approximately 841,000 are attributed to motor vehicle accidents. California, alongside Florida and Texas, ranks among the states with the highest population and consequently records a significant number of fatal car crashes each year.

Between 2019 and 2022, California has consistently reported an average of at least 3,500 deadly car accidents annually. Shockingly, the state also tops the charts for the highest number of fatalities, with 4,407 recorded deaths in 2022 alone. It’s important to note that many of these accident victims may have sustained neck injuries as a result of the collisions. 

These statistics underscore the prevalence and severity of neck injuries in car accidents, highlighting the importance of awareness and preventative measures.

Types of Neck Injuries From a Car Accident

The leading causes of car accidents, such as speeding and driving under the influence of alcohol, contribute significantly to the incidence of neck injuries. Among the most common neck injuries that result from a car accident include:

Spinal Cord Injuries

Your spinal cord, comprised of delicate soft tissues and nerves extending from your lower back to your skull, plays a crucial role in facilitating movement. However, sudden trauma to the vertebrae can result in spinal cord injuries, potentially leading to paralysis.


Whiplash occurs when your body is suddenly thrust forward after a rear-end collision, causing your neck to extend and then snap backward. This abrupt movement can tear ligaments and muscles, resulting in considerable pain and discomfort.

Neck Fracture

Severe collisions may cause cervical fractures, where the vertebrae abruptly crack. Neck fractures are incredibly painful and can even lead to joint paralysis, significantly limiting movement.

Slip or Herniated Disc

The spine contains intervertebral discs and gel-like cushions that provide support. If these discs forcefully protrude from the spine, they can pinch nerves, leading to a slipped disc. In more severe cases, this protrusion can rupture the spine.

Sprains and Strains

Less severe neck injuries may result in bruising or tearing of muscles, leading to sprains and strains or the stretching of ligaments. Inflammation around the injury site can cause muscle spasms and further discomfort.

Lacerations and Abrasions

Sharp objects from car collisions, such as broken glass, can cause lacerations or deep wounds in the neck. Abrasions occur when the top layer of skin is scraped during the accident, adding to the complexity and severity of neck injuries sustained in car accidents.

Symptoms of a Neck Injury

The effects of a neck injury after a car accident can vary in severity, potentially resulting in paralysis or permanent spinal damage.

Following an accident, victims may experience a range of symptoms, from mild to severe muscle spasms and pinched nerves, which can progress to more serious complications like slipped discs and fractures.

Here are some of the most common symptoms associated with neck injuries:

  • Headaches
  • Blurred vision
  • Neck stiffness
  • Loss of range of motion
  • Shoulder pain
  • Sharp and tingling sensations in the neck muscles and nerves
  • Confusion and sleepiness
  • Difficulty speaking

What to Do After Neck Injury?

If you or a loved one has sustained a neck injury in a collision, here’s what you need to do:

Seek Immediate Medical Attention

Obtaining prompt medical care following a car accident is paramount for treating neck injuries effectively. Timely intervention can help prevent further damage to the spine and mitigate the risk of permanent mobility impairment. 

Additionally, medical documentation of your injuries is crucial for supporting insurance claims and legal proceedings.

Document the Scene

If you’re lucky enough not to be seriously injured, it’s important to stay at the scene and contact the authorities to file an accident report.

Exchange contact and insurance information with the other involved parties, and document the scene by taking photographs or videos. These records can serve as valuable evidence in your case.

Undergo Proper Evaluation and Treatment

Depending on the severity of your neck injury, immediate surgical intervention or other forms of treatment may be necessary. 

Your healthcare provider may conduct diagnostic tests such as X-rays, CT scans, or MRIs to assess the extent of soft tissue damage. Proper treatment is crucial not only for your recovery, but also for ensuring fair compensation for your injuries.

Consult with a Personal Injury Lawyer

Seeking guidance from an experienced personal injury lawyer can be instrumental in navigating the complex process of filing injury claims. 

A knowledgeable attorney can advocate on your behalf, helping you secure the compensation needed to cover medical expenses and other related costs. With legal representation, you can focus on your recovery while your attorney handles the legal aspects of your case.

Potential Compensation You May Receive

When filing a personal neck injury claim with the assistance of your car accident attorney, you may be entitled to compensation for various damages, including:

  • Medical Expenses: Coverage for medical bills incurred as a result of the injury, including hospital stays, surgeries, medications, and therapy.
  • Pain and Suffering: Compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress endured due to the injury, including discomfort, anxiety, and depression.
  • Lost Earning Capacity: Reimbursement for the income lost due to the inability to work or reduced earning potential caused by the injury.
  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life: Compensation for the diminished quality of life resulting from the injury, including the inability to engage in activities and hobbies previously enjoyed.
a damaged red car after collision
Car accidents often result in victims suffering from neck injuries.

Economic Damages

Economic damages encompass the tangible costs associated with the injury, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and out-of-pocket expenses like transportation to medical appointments.

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages cover intangible losses, including ongoing pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of companionship, and inconvenience caused by the injury.

Punitive Damages

Exemplary or punitive damages are rare and are not directly related to the injuries sustained. They are awarded by the jury as a form of monetary punishment for the gross negligence or egregious conduct of the responsible party, typically following a court decision.

What Happens When Your Neck Injury Car Accident Claim is Denied?

If your insurance company denies your claim, you may find yourself without the proper compensation for your injury. In such cases, it’s essential to request a written explanation detailing the reason for the denial. 

Your personal injury lawyer can assist you in navigating the appeals process, seeking to overturn the denial and secure the compensation you deserve. Alternatively, you may choose to pursue a civil lawsuit to pursue your claim further.

Speak With a Car Accident Lawyer at Adamson Ahdoot

If you’ve been involved in a car accident, the legal team at Adamson Ahdoot is here to assist you. We offer free consultations conducted in both English and Spanish, ensuring accessibility for all clients. 

Contact us today at (800) 310-1606 to schedule a no-obligation consultation with a leading injury attorney.

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Our team can better advise you on your legal options once we receive any available evidence about the incident.

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