Proving Whiplash in a Virginia Car Accident | Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp

Whiplash is one of the most common injuries sustained by car accident victims, but it is also one of the most contested by insurance companies. Insurance adjusters may try to accuse victims of exaggerating their symptoms or even faking them entirely.

Whiplash can be difficult to diagnose and this is what can make it easily contested by the at-fault party’s insurance company. There are several steps that a seasoned Virginia car accident attorney can take to prove that a victim is suffering from a whiplash injury as a result of the crash.

What Is Whiplash?

 The impact of a vehicle hitting another vehicle can cause the neck to move beyond its normal range of motion, violently “whipping” the neck and head back and forth. This causes damage to the muscles, nerves, and tendons as they’re stretched beyond their normal range. This soft tissue damage is not visible on MRIs or X-rays, but as many whiplash victims can attest, the pain can be debilitating.

In addition to this pain, other symptoms of whiplash can include headaches, back pain, and muscle spasms in the neck. Many victims also suffer from insomnia.

How Can a Virginia Accident Attorney Prove Whiplash?

Although whiplash does not always show up in diagnostic testing which can be shown to a jury, a Virginia personal injury attorney can still prove that the victim has suffered a whiplash injury in a crash caused by the at-fault driver.




One of the strongest ways that an attorney can prove whiplash is by the victim’s physician testimony. The physician can explain to the jury the process used to diagnose the whiplash, including a victim’s symptoms, examination, treatments, and prognosis. Medical professionals, including chiropractors and physical therapists, document the changes and improvement in a victim’s condition throughout the victim’s treatment, which can later be used to show the extent of the victim’s injuries.

The attorney can also use the victim’s prescription medication history as evidence. Many doctors prescribe pain-relievers and muscle relaxers to help alleviate the pain and discomfort the injury is causing the victim. The medication history can help show just how much pain the victim had to deal with.

Testimony from any family members or friends living with the victim can also be used. Relatives and friends can describe just how much the injury and the symptoms of the injury impacted and interfered with the victim’s life.

A car accident attorney can also use the police report, photographs of the vehicles, as well as any accident recreation records to prove a whiplash injury. These documents will often have information describing how the crash happened (i.e. rear-end, head-on collision, etc.), what speed each of the vehicles involved was traveling, and demonstrate the force of the impact. A recreation can show how the crash impact affected each occupant in the vehicle, as well.

Let a Virginia Injury Attorney Help

If you have suffered whiplash or any other injury caused by the negligent or reckless behavior of another driver, contact a Virginia car accident attorney to discuss what your legal options may be. Our Virginia personal injury attorneys have successfully represented many clients who were forced to deal with painful injuries and long recoveries due to another person’s negligence. Contact our office today at 757-578-1079 to schedule a free case evaluation.