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Whiplash injury claims 

Whiplash injuries from road traffic accidents are often regarded as minor but in reality, they can have truly painful and significant consequences.

Whiplash has long been seen by insurance companies as a dubious sort of injury that drivers and passengers leverage in order to falsify or bolster their personal injury claims.

However, we know that when someone has been in a crash, the forces at play can have a seriously damaging effect on the neck and shoulder muscles. Anyone who suffers from back or neck pain will know exactly how debilitating this can be

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Can I claim whiplash compensation?

If you were in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be able to claim whiplash compensation. 

The Scottish Government confirms compensation is “paid to help ease any physical or mental trauma you suffered because of the road crash” – and this includes soft tissue injuries like whiplash.

At Digby Brown, we see first-hand the serious consequences of whiplash injuries. In a number of cases, people who have suffered whiplash can be left unable to work for a significant period of time.

How to claim for whiplash

Securing compensation for a whiplash injury claim is essentially no different from claiming compensation for any other injury.

Your personal injury solicitor will investigate the circumstances of the collision, gather medical evidence and then work with leading experts to calculate your financial losses.

If your injury has caused you to be off work for a prolonged period of time, then it is likely a good portion of your settlement will be based on the wages or pension contributions you lost during this time.

No win, no fee personal injury solicitors

The expression “No win, no fee” is often used in personal injury cases.  It is used as a way of funding a compensation claim where the accident victim does not have the means to pay for the costs involved as the case progresses. 

A number of solicitors are prepared to handle personal injury cases on a “No Win – No Fee” basis but very few are able to offer their clients complete protection if the case is unsuccessful. 

In that event, the client could end up being liable for many thousands of pounds in legal expenses or the case won't be fully investigated and therefore likely to under-settle.

Compensate 'no win, no fee' funding

Digby Brown has its own funding company, Compensate, which provides the funding to allow the case to be fully investigated, employ the best experts surrounding the circumstances of the accident and/or injuries sustained and where and if necessary go to court.

If for whatever reason the case is unsuccessful, Compensate pays all your legal expenses and those of your opponent – you pay nothing

On average our clients receive over 3 times the pre-litigation offer

Because of Compensate funding Digby Brown's success rate is extremely high and on average our clients receive three times the pre-litigation offer.

In the event the case is successful, a small percentage of your damages will be deducted with VAT to pay for this service. The percentage which Compensate will charge depends on the degree of risk involved. We believe that this is the fairest method of giving clients access to justice whilst ensuring their cases are fully investigated, prepared and funded.

Don’t take our word for it, just read many of the court decisions and case studies on our website.

Beware of compensation offers which may be too good

We know you will have seen many adverts offering 100% compensation or telling you that you will not lose any of your compensation, however we believe there are a number of problems with companies that do this.

  • How do they make their money if they don’t charge you anything?
  • If they aren’t taking any money from you, the client, what incentive do they have to ensure you receive the right level of compensation, appropriate to the injuries you have sustained?
  • Fully preparing a case, finding out exactly what happened and what the consequences of your injuries may mean in the long term, is expensive, how do they do this properly?
  • If they aren’t fully preparing these cases will they just accept the first offer they are given on your behalf by the Insurance company?
  • It makes simple business sense, the less work they do the higher their profit margin is - they simply have no incentive to work harder on your behalf.
  • These adverts in the main are from English firms on national television which operates in a different way and therefore wouldn’t apply to a Scottish person.

We know from the many client cases we mandate from other firms of solicitors (in the main at the request of the client who is extremely unsatisfied with the service received for the other firm) that many shortcuts are taken in preparation and that the first offer received is being recommended for acceptance, regardless of the value. 

Getting something for nothing is usually the first sign of poor service.

Correct level of compensation with Digby Brown

Our experience and statistics show time and time again we will achieve the correct level of compensation which will be substantially more than the insurer is initially prepared to offer.

Even after we have deducted our percentage as a success fee you will gain considerably more than you would have achieved using a 100% compensation model.

Contact Digby Brown's personal injury solicitors

We have offices across Scotland in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee, Kirkcaldy, Inverness, Aberdeen and Ayr.

For further information about no win, no fee, or anything else, call us on 0333 200 5925 or fill in our enquiry form below and someone will get back in touch with you.

The compensation you receive is based on how the injury impacts your life. It has to be properly calculated, justified and proven with thorough calculations that are then backed up by supporting evidence.

This evidence typically takes the form of reports obtained from medical or employment experts who can analyse your injuries and the impact they may have on your future.

The final compensation you receive is made of several smaller payments known as “heads of claim” which include:

  • Your injury (‘solatium’) – this is the only part of your claim that reflects the pain and suffering part of your injury. In most cases, it is also actually the smallest portion of your settlement.
  • Lost earnings – if your injury prevented you from working we will seek to recover any lost wages and even any impact on your pension. This is often the most high-value aspect of any claim.
  • Loss of society – this is a very sad aspect but we think it’s important to let you know. If the car crash claimed the life of a loved one then immediate relatives like a spouse/civil partner, (step) siblings, (step) parents and (step) grandparents will have this loss recognised in the form of compensation.
  • Services – if your injury left you house or bed-bound and reliant on help from close relatives (such as to do housework, shopping or gardening) then we can seek to reimburse that relative for the cost of this.
  • Medical treatment – if there is evidence to show your recovery would benefit from enhanced treatment then we can add this to the value of your case. This is especially important for serious injury survivors as they seek to rebuild lives with a brain injury, spinal cord injury or following the loss of a limb.
  • Rehabilitation and care needs – people with life-changing injuries may require ongoing or life-changing support measures. It could include home adaptations (like lowered countertops for wheelchair users) or a dedicated rehabilitation coordinator worker (who often aids brain injury survivors). Should you benefit from such support then your Digby Brown solicitor can include these measures in the total value of your claim so the other side pays for it.
  • Damaged belongings – if you suffered a loss of goods then this can also be recovered as part of your personal injury claim (such as personal items that were damaged in the car crash like clothing or mobile phones.)

Solicitors often rely on information like police accident reports to help build your case but if the police were not involved, your solicitor may rely more on any evidence you gathered yourself at the time.

This may include:

  • The make, model and colour of the other vehicle
  • The registration number of the other vehicle
  • The name and address of the other driver
  • Photos or videos from the scene that show the damage

If you can, try and sketch how the incident happened on a piece of paper while it’s fresh in your memory. These details can help any future claim so try and gather what information you can immediately after the collision. This approach is especially useful in low-speed collisions, such as being rear-ended at a roundabout or being struck while driving in a car park (which typically do not result in police involvement).

How long have I got to make a claim?

If you have been involved in an accident which resulted in you or your passengers sustaining a whiplash injury and you want to seek compensation, you have 3 years after the date of the crash.

If a child under 16 was involved, you can claim compensation at any point until they turn 19, regardless of what year they were injured.

However, we recommend making a claim as soon as possible so crucial information like witness testimonies are more accurate.

How Digby Brown helps in whiplash injury claims

We take on whiplash claims on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis through our "Compensate" funding product. Digby Brown has its own funding company “Compensate” which will pay for everything upfront so you aren’t out of pocket or able to take your case forward.

Why? When your case is successful, we can recover these legal costs from the insurance company on the other side.

As a firm, we strongly believe in doing everything possible to help people get back to a pre-accident position. Even if your accident occurred outwith Scotland, we have a specialist team that deals with accidents abroad to ensure you always have access to the best possible legal support.

Contact us for free, friendly and helpful initial legal advice

For a confidential chat with one of our legal advisors, call us on the number below or fill in a short enquiry form and we will be in touch.


How is whiplash diagnosed? 

Whiplash is typically diagnosed based on a person's symptoms, medical history, and physical examination. During the examination, a healthcare provider will likely check for signs of injury, such as tenderness or pain in the neck and shoulders, limited range of motion, and muscle spasms. They may also check for neurological symptoms such as numbness or tingling in the arms or hands.

Imaging tests such as X-rays, CT scans, or MRIs may be ordered to rule out other more serious injuries or to confirm the diagnosis. Diagnostic imaging tests can help to visualise any damage to the bones, disks, and ligaments in the neck.

What if the other driver refuses to provide details? 

Occasionally, the other driver may refuse to give their details. Section 170 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 confirms it is illegal for a person to not give you their details in the event of a crash. In the event a driver refuses to exchange information, you should report their vehicle to the police and obtain a police reference number. This may then prove to be another valuable piece of evidence.

Even if the other driver has no insurance, it is still possible for us to act on your behalf. Our page on uninsured driver claims will help you understand what we do in these situations to ensure you still receive the level of fair compensation that you are legally entitled to.

What are the different grades of whiplash? 

Medical professionals often classify whiplash injuries into three grades, based on the severity of the symptoms and the amount of tissue damage. 
These grades are as follows:

Grade I or Mild whiplash injury  – Symptoms may include mild neck pain and stiffness, headaches, and tenderness in the neck and shoulders. There is minor tissue damage and complete recovery is expected.
Grade II or Moderate whiplash  – Symptoms may include moderate neck pain and stiffness, headaches, and muscle spasms. There is likely to be some tissue damage and recovery may end up taking anywhere from a few weeks to a couple of months.
Grade III or Severe whiplash injury  –Several symptoms may be present including those described in mild and moderate whiplash injury. Neurological symptoms such as numbness or tingling in the arms or hands may also be present. There is likely to be significant tissue damage and recovery may take several months or even longer.

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