aggravation of a pre existing condition settlement

In California, personal injury claims can become intricate when the victim already has an existing condition or injury that is worsened by another person’s negligence. Understanding how these cases are handled is vital for securing a fair aggravated injury settlement.



Understanding Pre-Existing Conditions

A pre-existing condition refers to any injury or health condition that a person had before the accident. Common examples include:

When these conditions are exacerbated due to an accident caused by another person’s recklessness, it is crucial to understand your rights and how to seek compensation.

Establishing Aggravation of a Pre-Existing Condition

To secure an aggravation of a pre-existing condition settlement, you must establish that the accident made your current situation worse. Here are the steps to bolster your accident settlement claim:

Medical Records and Documentation

Detailed health records are essential. They provide a clear history of your pre-existing medical condition and document how it has been worsened by the accident. Ensure you:

  • Obtain copies of your medical history before the accident.
  • Document all medical visits, treatments, and diagnoses following the accident.
  • Keep a record of all medical expenses related to the aggravation of pre-existing injuries.

Expert Testimony

Medical experts can offer crucial testimony to support your claim. They can:

  • Compare your medical condition before and after the accident.
  • Explain the extent to which the situation worsened your pre-existing physical or emotional condition.
  • Provide professional opinions on future medical needs and associated costs.

Personal Testimony

Your account of how the new injury has impacted your daily life is also important. Detailed personal testimony can include:

  • Changes in your physical capabilities and activities.
  • The emotional and psychological toll of dealing with an aggravated injury.
  • Impact on your ability to work and perform routine tasks.

California Laws on Aggravated Injury Settlements

In California injury law, the “eggshell plaintiff” rule protects individuals with pre-existing conditions. This legal principle states that a defendant is liable for the plaintiff’s injuries even if the injuries are more severe due to the plaintiff’s preexisting condition. This rule means that:

  • Defendants cannot argue that they should not be fully liable because the victim was more susceptible to injury.
  • Compensation should reflect the full extent of the aggravated injury, not just the new injuries sustained in the accident.

Calculating Aggravation of a Pre-Existing Condition Settlement

Determining the value of an aggravated injury settlement involves several factors:

Medical Expenses

All medical costs associated with treating the aggravated pre-existing injury should be included. This covers:

  • Emergency room visits
  • Hospital stays
  • Ongoing medical treatment and therapy
  • Future medical bills and procedures

Lost Wages and Earning Capacity

If the condition that was made worse has impacted your ability to work, you can claim:

  • Lost wages for time off work
  • Reduced earning capacity if the injury affects your future employment prospects

Pain and Suffering

Compensation for pain and suffering considers the physical pain and emotional distress sustained due to the aggravation. This can be more challenging to quantify but is a critical component of your settlement.

Example Scenario

Consider Jane, who had chronic back pain and a herniated disc before being involved in a car accident caused by a negligent driver. The accident severely worsened her back condition and ability to walk, requiring surgery and extensive rehabilitation.

By providing her medical history, obtaining expert testimony, and documenting the changes in her daily life and work capacity, Jane successfully secured an aggravation of a pre-existing condition settlement that covered her medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

The Role of an Experienced Injury Attorney in Claiming Aggravation of Pre-existing Injuries

Securing a fair aggravated injury settlement requires a thorough understanding of local laws and meticulous preparation of evidence. An experienced California accident injury lawyer can:

  • Help gather and organize medical records and expert testimony.
  • Build a strong case demonstrating the aggravation of pre-existing conditions to the fullest extent.
  • Negotiate with insurance companies and opposing counsel to ensure you receive the highest compensation possible.

Get Max Compensation for Your Personal Injury Claim. Contact RTM Law Firm for a Free Consultation.

If you or a loved one has suffered an aggravated injury due to someone else’s recklessness and negligence, seek legal help right away.


The skilled attorneys at RTM Law, APC | Personal Injury Attorney are ready to assist you in securing the compensation you deserve. We have helped many accident victims obtain the maximum aggravation of a pre-existing condition settlement. Don’t hesitate to reach out for expert guidance and support in your journey to recovery and justice.


Call our personal injury lawyer at (949) 287-4342. No fees until we win.




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