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Car Accident and Pre-Existing Conditions: Impact on Claims

Experiencing a car accident can be quite distressing, but things can become even more complex when the people involved already have existing medical conditions. When it comes to insurance claims for car accidents in Oroville, California, the presence of pre-existing conditions can significantly impact the process and outcome. A study conducted in 2018 had shown that 25% of California’s non-elderly population had declinable pre-existing conditions. In light of this, it is especially important to understand how pre-existing conditions come into play after a car accident and its impact on claims.

Understanding Pre-Existing Conditions

A pre-existing condition refers to a medical condition that someone had before the accident or incident took place. It could range from back pain to an injury. Individuals with pre-existing conditions caught in a car accident in Oroville often have concerns about how these conditions might affect their ability to make insurance claims.

The Role of Pre-Conditions in Car Accident Claims

Following a car accident, insurance companies strive to determine liability and provide appropriate compensation for the victims. However, when there is a pre-existing condition involved, things can get a lot more complicated. Insurance companies may argue that any injuries or pain experienced by the individual are solely attributed to their pre-existing conditions rather than being caused by the accident itself.

The Principle of “Eggshell Plaintiff”

In cases involving individuals with pre-existing conditions, courts and insurance companies often adhere to what is commonly referred to as the “eggshell plaintiff” principle. According to this principle, if someone is injured in a car accident and already has a pre-existing condition or vulnerability, the party at fault must take responsibility for all the resulting damages. This includes situations where the damages are more severe due to the person’s pre-existing condition.

To explain further, let’s consider a scenario: Imagine an individual who has back pain from a sports injury and gets rear-ended in a car accident. Although their back pain already exists, it’s highly likely that the accident made their symptoms worse or worsened their condition (such as soft tissue damage or fractures). In such cases, having a pre-existing condition may actually strengthen their claim for compensation instead of weakening it.

When determining compensation for victims with pre-existing conditions involved in car accidents, several factors come into play. These factors include assessing the severity of the pre-existing condition, evaluating how the accident impacted that condition, and considering its overall effect on well-being.

Insurance companies often review an individual’s medical records and conduct investigations to establish causation. They may also request examinations or consult with healthcare professionals to better understand how the accidents relate to any aggravated conditions.

Expert Opinions in the Medical Field

Determining the cause of an incident is crucial when it comes to insurance claims. It’s important to consider the opinions of specialists as they can significantly influence the outcome. Healthcare professionals who are familiar with both pre-existing conditions and injuries related to accidents can provide valuable expertise in supporting these claims. Their professional assessments help insurance companies accurately evaluate damages and provide compensation for individuals who have experienced harm due to their pre-existing conditions.

Proving Aggravation

When filing a claim for a car accident that involves a pre-existing condition, it is vital to gather strong evidence that demonstrates how the accident has worsened or exacerbated the existing condition. This evidence may include reports, results from diagnostic tests, and statements from treating physicians who can provide insight into how the accident has impacted their patient’s health.


Experiencing a car accident is already distressing, but things can become even more complicated when there are pre-existing conditions involved and you’re seeking insurance compensation. By understanding the principles surrounding individuals with pre-existing health conditions (“eggshell plaintiffs”) and collecting solid evidence that shows aggravation of those health issues caused by accidents, you can improve your chances of receiving fair compensation. People should not be denied the opportunity to make claims for car accident injuries just because they have pre-existing conditions. Insurance companies have a responsibility to evaluate coverage and provide compensation considering all the factors that contributed to someone’s injury or pain, even if those factors were present before the accident happened.