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Will a Pre-Existing Condition Affect My Personal Injury Claim?

Will a Pre-Existing Condition Affect My Personal Injury Claim?

iLawyer February 11, 2021 Personal injury

If you or somebody you care about has sustained an injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of somebody else, you should be able to secure compensation for your losses. However, pre-existing conditions can throw a wrench into these situations. At-fault parties and their insurance carriers will do anything they can to limit the amount of money they pay out for a personal injury claim. This includes using an injury victim’s pre-existing conditions against them. Here, we want to talk about how a pre-existing condition can affect a personal injury claim and what you can do to ensure that you receive maximum compensation if you have sustained an injury caused by somebody else.

Pre-existing injuries exist, but they do not prevent compensation recovery

The reality is that many people discuss personal injury cases assuming that the person who was injured was completely healthy and had no injuries before the accident occurred. However, this is rarely true. Most individuals deal with various sorts of medical conditions at various times in their lives. Some of these conditions are relatively minor, but some are major. Pre-existing injuries and illnesses can have an effect on a personal injury claim.

Generally speaking, a person cannot recover compensation in a personal injury claim for injuries or conditions that were unaffected by the accident yet continue to exist as they did before the incident occurred. However, that does not mean that they will receive no compensation at all for an incident that makes a pre-existing injury or condition worse. This is called an exasperation or aggravation of a pre-existing condition.

Recovering compensation if you have a pre-existing condition

Just because a person has a pre-existing injury or illness does not absolve the alleged negligent party of their responsibility to pay for their role in aggravating these pre-existing conditions. It also does not absolve them of having to pay for any new injuries caused by their negligence.

Injury victims should never feel discouraged from pursuing compensation for injuries just because they had a pre-existing condition. This is true even if the insurance carrier or the at-fault party threatens to use their pre-existing condition against them.

First, it is always a good idea for an injury victim to secure assistance from a skilled Scottsdale personal injury attorney who can handle their case. An attorney will be able to gather medical records that show their client’s condition both before and after the accident. They will be able to demonstrate exactly how the defendant’s actions made a pre-existing injury or condition worse while also proving any new injuries that the victim has sustained.

The “eggshell skull rule”

The eggshell skull rule or the “eggshell plaintiff” rule is a legal concept that applies to cases where pre-existing existing conditions. This has a few other names as well, including the “take your victim as you find him” rule. This generally applies to all personal injury cases and basically means that the frailty of an injury victim is not a valid defense against a personal injury claim.

In other words, just because a person may be susceptible to an injury does not mean that the negligent party that caused the injury is not liable. They can absolutely be liable if their negligence caused the victim’s injury.

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