Should you claim whiplash compensation through your insurance?

When you make a personal injury claim for whiplash (or any other injury that occurs as the result of a road accident) the claim is usually handled by the negligent driver's insurance company.

In these circumstances, your car insurance coverage you have should not be affected.

What the insurance companies do not want you to know

Recent research by the Financial Conduct Authority has revealed claimants get on average three times more compensation if they:

  • Turn down an insurance company's initial offer, and,
  • Instruct a special solicitor

This information was only available publicly as a result of a Freedom of Information Act challenge.

Knock-for-knock whiplash claims

If both sides admit some degree of fault, or there is no agreement as to who caused an accident, the insurance companies of the two drivers may agree to settle the case on a knock for knock basis.

This means that compensation is paid out by each driver's own insurer, not the other side.

Knock-for-knock saves insurance companies money in legal fees, and will resolve the matter faster, but it can affect drivers own claim history and future premiums.

For this reason, the practice may be seen by some as unfair, benefiting the insurers more than it does the innocent party.

Whiplash pre-medical offers

Insurance companies may sometimes make a settlement offer known as a pre-medical offer.

For more information please see 'Should I accept a pre-medical offer?'.

Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

About the author

Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.

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