Trying to recover from accident-related injuries is difficult enough. Injured victims with pre-existing conditions face the added challenge of compounding medical issues and complicated legal battles. If you had a pre-existing condition when you were hurt in an accident, those existing health issues could make your accident-related injuries worse. How does this impact your personal injury claim in Georgia?

Personal Injury Claims with Pre-Existing Conditions

The insurance company or opposing party may try to use a pre-existing condition against you in your injury claim. This matters because an injury claim hinges on the assertion that someone else’s negligence caused you harm. If you were already experiencing a health problem prior to the accident, is the person responsible for the accident also held accountable for your injuries? It depends.

Eggshell Skull Rule

Georgia follows what is known as the eggshell skull rule, which says that someone who causes an accident is liable for the injured person’s injury, even if the reaction was uncommon or unforeseeable due to a pre-existing condition.

If you have a condition that magnifies harm caused by an accident, the at-fault party is still responsible for the damage they caused you. It doesn’t matter that the injury you experienced was more severe or impactful than what someone else would have experienced.

Georgia has established through case law that the eggshell skull rule means at-fault parties must take injured parties as they are, meaning they are responsible for all the damage they caused regardless of pre-existing conditions. The negligent party cannot blame your injuries on your existing health conditions. If the accident triggers or worsens a pre-existing condition, you can recover damages for the new or worsened symptoms caused by the accident.

Like with any personal injury claim, you will need to show that you did suffer harm caused by the negligence of the responsible party. Underlying conditions can make this task more complicated, but a skilled personal injury attorney can help you gather the evidence necessary to build your case.

How to Address Pre-Existing Conditions

Medical records are invaluable in cases involving pre-existing health issues because they help to establish a baseline of your condition before and after the accident. Seeking medical attention immediately following an accident is the best way to create a medical paper trail for your injury claim. By creating a timeline or map of your pre-existing and new conditions, you can show that the accident did exacerbate illnesses you already had or cause new injuries.

Be honest about your health history throughout the claim process. Attempting to hide information can create additional legal problems. Further, Georgia’s eggshell skull rule means that your pre-existing conditions are not inherently damaging to your injury case.

Dependable Guidance During Your Recovery Period

Do you have a personal injury claim with a pre-existing condition? The personal injury attorneys at Flanagan Law prioritize your best interests and work tirelessly to resolve your case as advantageously as possible. Schedule a free consultation today.

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