| Read Time: 6 minutes | Car Accident

Any time you find yourself dealing with neck pain after a car accident, seeking medical treatment and support is paramount. However, what happens when neck pain does not show up immediately after the accident? Many people find themselves worrying about whether they can tie that neck pain back to the accident and how they can recover compensation for the damages they have faced. 

Why do I experience delayed back pain after a car accident?

Delayed neck pain after a car accident is often caused by the initial rush of adrenaline masking early symptoms, followed by the onset of inflammation and microtraumas like small tears in muscles or ligaments.This pain, which may include whiplash, typically becomes noticeable only after the adrenaline wears off and can indicate more significant injuries.

What Are the Symptoms of Delayed Neck Pain After a Car Accident?

Symptoms of delayed neck pain varies, but these usually include:

  • Stiffness
  • Pain: Reduced Mobility
  • Headaches
  • Tenderness
  • Numbness or Tingling

If you experience these symptoms after a car accident, even if there are delayed, you should seek medical attention.

Can I File a Personal Injury Claim for Delayed Neck Pain After a Car Accident in Arizona?

You can file a personal injury claim any time you suffer injuries in a car accident, including cases in which those injuries do not show up until weeks or even months after the accident itself. That means that you can file a personal injury claim for neck pain, as long as you do it before the statute of limitations expires. In Arizona, that means you have two years from the date of the accident. 

Call Hutzler Law at 602-730-4530 to discuss your neck injury claim and discover what compensation you may deserve.

What Should I Do If I Suffer Delayed Neck Pain After a Car Accident?

Any time you suffer pain after a car accident, including pain that does not show up for days or weeks after the accident, always seek medical care and attention immediately. Neck pain following a car accident can occur for several reasons.

  • Whiplash, including chronic whiplash. While most symptoms of whiplash will resolve within a few weeks, some people may suffer from chronic whiplash, which will lead to ongoing symptoms. 
  • Muscle sprains or strains
  • Dislocated vertebrae
  • Herniated discs
  • Neck fractures

Many of these injuries can lead to long-term issues or ongoing suffering. Prompt medical care can help alleviate those symptoms and put you in a better position to manage your injuries. 

Keep Copies of Medical Records

As you seek medical attention for car accident-related neck injuries, ask for copies of relevant medical documentation and start a file that will allow you to keep up with them. You may need to use those records to establish the injuries you suffered. Your doctor may also make a statement noting that the injuries likely resulted from your car accident. 

Tracking Your Medical Bills Following Car Accident Injuries

Any time you suffer any type of injury in a car accident, including an injury that results in delayed neck pain, make sure you document all medical costs associated with treatment for those injuries. That includes not only any emergency treatment costs, but also any follow-up visits or tests you may need to determine what caused your delayed neck pain. If you do not accurately track your costs, it can make it much more difficult to put together a future claim.

Contact a Lawyer as Soon as Possible

You may not think you need a lawyer if you only suffered property damage in an accident. In fact, you may even have already begun discussions with the insurance company. However, any injury claim–especially one that involves delayed pain and, therefore, delayed diagnosis–needs the support of a personal injury lawyer to ensure that the claim progresses as smoothly as possible. A personal injury lawyer can offer considerable protections that will make it easier to manage your personal injury claim.

Avoid Accepting an Insurance Offer

When you suffer delayed neck pain after a car accident, you may receive a settlement offer from the insurance company before you have a chance to fully go over the extent of the damages you may experience as a result of your injuries. The offer may come faster if the insurance company is not aware of your injuries or if you have only briefly mentioned those injuries during your conversations with the insurance company.

Unfortunately, the insurance company may try to pressure you to accept a fast offer: one that seems, on the surface, to cover the extent of the damages you faced because of the accident, but which may not actually provide you with fair compensation for all the losses you may experience because of neck injuries. Instead, let your lawyer negotiate on your behalf.

Why You Need a Lawyer If You Suffer Delayed Neck Pain After a Car Accident

Any time you suffer any type of injury in a car accident, including cases in which you may suffer delayed pain and receive diagnosis of an injury only weeks after an accident, you need a lawyer to help with your car accident claim. However, in cases of delayed pain, when you may not have received the medical treatment you needed right after the accident, a lawyer can prove even more essential. 

The Insurance Company May Deny Liability

In many cases, if you suffer delayed neck pain after an accident, the insurance company may deny liability for the incident. The company may try to claim that, because you did not notice pain immediately after the accident, you must have suffered your injuries at another time. As a result, you may find yourself struggling to get fair compensation.

A lawyer, on the other hand, can help you clearly establish that the car accident, and the covered driver’s negligent actions, led to your neck injuries. With a lawyer, you can also more easily contest a claim denial. 

The Insurance Company May Ignore the Extent of Your Injuries

The insurance company may take the stance that if you did not notice neck pain right after the accident, it must not be as severe as you claim. Unfortunately, in some cases, you may not notice injuries right after the accident–often due to the flood of endorphins and adrenaline that accompany a serious car accident–but the lingering impact of those injuries can prove much more severe. You may, for example, find yourself struggling to engage in any activity that requires you to turn your head, or even activities like work that can require you to sit in a certain position for a period of time. 

A lawyer can help you showcase the full extent of your injuries and how they impact every area of your life. A neck injury can prove devastating, limiting your mobility and activity levels and making it difficult for you to engage in many of your favorite hobbies. With help from a lawyer, you can better display the full range of those challenges to the insurance company.

The Insurance Company May Pressure You

Insurance companies often pressure car accident victims to accept fast settlement offers: offers that fail to fully reflect the damages sustained by the injured party. If you accept an early settlement offer, only to discover that your neck injury is more severe than you originally thought, you cannot go back and seek additional compensation later. A lawyer can help alleviate some of that pressure and provide you with a comprehensive look at the compensation you really deserve for your car accident injuries, ultimately increasing the odds that you will recover fair compensation. 

Having a Lawyer Reduces Your Stress

When you find yourself with delayed pain from a neck injury, your life can turn stressful very quickly. Not only does it cause ongoing pain, a neck injury may prevent you from working or from engaging in your favorite hobbies and leisure activities. You have enough stress in your life as you work through those concerns. Dealing with the insurance company should not add to your burden. A lawyer can help alleviate the stress associated with those common processes. 

Compensation You Can Recover for Delayed Neck Pain

At Hutzler Law, we cannot guarantee the compensation you will recover for any injury, including a neck injury. However, we can provide you with a basic overview of the costs you can usually include as part of your compensation request. 

Medical Costs

The cost of treatment for a neck injury can vary dramatically, depending on what type of care you need. However, it may include:

  • Emergency room treatment, if pain peaked sharply or came on suddenly
  • Scans and tests to diagnose your neck injury
  • Surgery or a stay in the hospital, for some types of injuries
  • Neck braces or other adaptive equipment
  • Physical therapy

Document all treatment costs so that you can include them as part of a comprehensive injury claim.

Wage Losses

When you suffer a serious neck injury, whether the pain comes on immediately after the accident or several days or weeks later, you may not be able to return to work immediately. Talk to your lawyer about any wages you missed out on because of your injuries, including time lost due to follow-up appointments with your care provider.

Pain and Suffering

In addition to the other costs related to your neck injury, you may have the right to pursue compensation for your pain and suffering. Talk to your lawyer about how to best include it as part of your claim.

Get Help from an Arizona Car Accident Lawyer After Your Neck Injury

If you suffered a neck injury with delayed pain after an Arizona car accident, Hutzler Law can help. Contact the Phoenix car accident attorneys at our law office today at 602-730-4530 or fill out our online contact form to get the support you need.

Author Photo

Jason Hutzler

Jason Hutzler is the founding partner of Phoenix personal injury law firm Hutzler Law, and represents individuals throughout Arizona. His practice is primarily dedicated to personal injury and car accident claims, leveraging his deep expertise as a former insurance adjustor to navigate the complexities of insurance negotiations.

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