As discussed in the previous question Can You Claim for Whiplash, the claims for whiplash in Alberta are significantly limited by the “cap” on WAD I or WAD II injuries in Alberta. WAD I or WAD II means you do not have any objective signs of neurological injuries, so the MRI or CT scan does not show a disc contusion or bulge or nerve root impingement.
To claim for whiplash, you need to be aware that the auto insurance industry in Alberta are private for-profit companies whose only priority is minimizing payments to injured victims and maximizing profits for shareholders. If you understand this, then you will realize that the auto insurance adjuster does not act for you, indeed he acts against you in trying to minimize the payout to maximize profits for the private for-profit auto insurance company.
Due to the “cap” on whiplash for a WAD I or WAD II it is difficult in Alberta to find a personal injury lawyer who will take your case since it is not financially worthwhile for a lawyer to be retained or hired on a contingency fee basis where the lawyer will receive a percentage of $5,000.00. There is simply too much work involved.
However, if you have a WAD III or WAD IV then it is worthwhile hiring a lawyer and you should contact our law firm otherwise the amount that you will obtain on your own from the auto insurance company will be minimal. This is because the auto insurance company knows:
1) that you really don’t know what its worth based upon legal precedent and
2) even if you did know what it was worth from researching our website under How Much Is My Claim Worth, the insurance company knows you don’t have the leverage to force them to pay a fair amount since you do not have the ability to force the insurance company to pay a fair amount.
However, when you hire Handel Law Firm, we can take the auto insurance company and the defendant to court and have a judge order them to pay a fair amount. With this leverage, suddenly, the negotiating field is level and we will be able to obtain a fair settlement for your whiplash injury.
Contact Handel Law Firm at 403-314-1199 to obtain a free consultation and evaluation as to whether your claim is a WAD I or WAD II or whether it is more serious, and you should hire a lawyer. Note, that even if your injury is a WAD II, if it results in a “serious impairment” of a physical or cognitive function that substantially impairs your ability to perform your employment, or education, or normal activities of daily living, and have been ongoing since the accident, and is not expected to “improve substantially” then you can argue that your WAD II is not a capped injury and worth far more. Probably 10 times more than the cap amount plus loss of wages, plus out of pocket expense plus treatment costs, plus loss of housekeeping capacity, plus interest.
Also, even if a WAD II, if you have suffered for 6 to 8 months or more without resolution then court cases in Edmonton have held that you really have a “chronic pain” case, and chronic pain is not capped so you can claim a fair amount for your long-term suffering – far more than the “cap” on whiplash injuries. See our Home page and the article Is Your Claim Capped for more detailed information and discussion of the case law. Call Handel Law Firm today for a free consultation as to whether you claim is capped or not. The difference may be 10 to 15 times more than what the insurance company is offering you directly. Your intuition is telling you their offer is not fair – listen to your intuition.