Lady with an ache in her legs, representing a preexisting condition
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Personal injury cases are often complex legal matters, and when pre-existing conditions come into play, the intricacies can multiply. You may be wondering about the impact of pre-existing conditions on your personal injury claim. Are you still entitled to compensation? Here’s what to know.

Understanding Pre-Existing Conditions

A pre-existing condition refers to a medical or health issue that a person had before the accident or incident that led to the personal injury claim. This could range from chronic illnesses to prior injuries, and the presence of such conditions often raises questions about causation, liability, and the calculation of damages.

The Impact on Causation and Liability

One of the primary considerations in a personal injury case is establishing a direct link between the defendant’s actions and the plaintiff’s injuries. When a pre-existing condition is present, the defendant may argue that the injuries were not entirely caused by the incident in question, but rather by the pre-existing condition. However, California law recognizes the “eggshell plaintiff” rule, which essentially means that defendants must take their victims as they find them. In other words, they are liable for the full extent of the injuries caused, even if the impact on a person with pre-existing conditions is more severe.

Proving Aggravation or Exacerbation

In personal injury cases involving pre-existing conditions, successful claims often hinge on demonstrating that the accident or incident aggravated or exacerbated the existing medical condition. This requires a thorough examination of medical records, expert testimony, and compelling evidence to illustrate how the pre-existing condition was worsened by the defendant’s actions.

The Impact on Damages

While pre-existing conditions may not necessarily bar a personal injury claim, they can impact the calculation of damages. California follows the “collateral source rule,” which allows plaintiffs to seek compensation for the full extent of their injuries, including medical expenses and lost wages, even if they had insurance or other sources covering some of these costs.

Legal Guidance in Personal Injury Cases

Navigating personal injury cases involving pre-existing conditions requires a nuanced understanding of California law and its application to specific circumstances. You must build a compelling narrative that highlights the defendant’s responsibility for the exacerbation of pre-existing conditions.

The Attorneys at Ardalan & Associates, PLC Help Those in California Who Have Been Injured in an Accident

If you’ve suffered a personal injury in California and have concerns about pre-existing conditions affecting your case, it’s crucial to seek legal guidance promptly. With the right representation, you can navigate the complexities of the legal system and pursue the compensation you deserve.

The lawyers at Ardalan & Associates, PLC will help fight for your rights. To schedule a consultation, contact us today.

About the Author
P. Christopher Ardalan has been a champion for the people since becoming an attorney in 2000 and establishing Ardalan & Associates, PLC. His practice, rooted in Southern California, emphasizes personal injury law where he, alongside a formidable team, tirelessly advocates for his clients. A Cum Laude graduate of California State University, Northridge, and Loyola Law School where he also graduated Cum Laude and Order of the Coif, Ardalan's early legal acumen earned him the moniker “The kid with the golden tongue.” His accolades include numerous mock trial victories, prestigious memberships, and high-profile awards such as being a Litigator Award® recipient and an inductee into ABOTA and the Million and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forums. Recognized by both his peers and prestigious legal associations, Ardalan’s relentless pursuit of justice is fueled by a lifelong dedication to learning and a heartfelt commitment to his clients. With a reputation as a seasoned trial lawyer and a compassionate advocate, he finds the greatest fulfillment in making a positive change in his clients’ lives, honoring his role as their voice for justice.