Whiplash Claims – Everything You Need To Know

By Danielle Griffin. Last Updated 8th February 2024Suffering a whiplash injury has the potential to cause significant disruption in a person’s life. Not only may they suffer injuries to their neck, shoulders or back, but they may be unable to work.

In this guide, we explore whiplash claims in detail. We examine the potential causes, discuss examples of how such an injury could be suffered, and consider your legal rights in relation to claiming compensation.

We also consider compensation payouts for whiplash and discuss No Win No Fee agreements, which may enable you to make a claim today.

Speaking of which, if you wish to take legal action and want expert help and support, get in touch.

Our specialist personal injury solicitors have handled thousands of whiplash claims over the years. They can offer you a free case check to see if you can claim, and can advise you as to what you could recover in compensation.

To speak with us you can:

  • Call on 0800 073 8801
  • Or speak with us now via our live chat service

Browse Our Guide

  1. What to Do If You Are Involved In An Accident That Causes Whiplash
  2. The Criteria For Whiplash Claims
  3. Circumstances When Could You Make A Whiplash Claim
  4. Examples Of Compensation Payouts For Whiplash Claims
  5. Make A Car Accident Claim No Win No Fee Basis Today
  6. Learn More About Whiplash Claims

Man holding his neck after experiencing whiplash

What To Do If You Are Involved In An Accident That Causes Whiplash

Don’t forget, road traffic collisions do not just cause whiplash, as various injuries could be inflicted. However, if you are involved in an accident and are hurt, collecting necessary information and evidence from the scene can help you decide to go ahead with a personal injury compensation claim.

  • Take photos – if you can, take pictures of the scene as they may prove useful later.
  • Write down what happened – we think that we will remember everything about what happened and yet when we are asked about a particular detail, we find that we cannot accurately recall the answer. As soon as you can, after the accident, write down what happened. Drawing a ‘map’ of what happened can help too. This is important for all accidents and incidents.
  • Collect witness contact details – if people witnessed your accident, ask them for their contact details. It is also worth noting that it is essential to inform the police of the incident in the event of a road traffic collision.

The Criteria For Whiplash Claims

When you are using the roads, you are owed a duty of care by other road users. This means that you and others have to take care to prevent harm or damage to yourself and others while using the roads. Part of upholding this duty is complying with the Highway Code and the Road Traffic Act 1988.

In order to make a whiplash claim, you have to be able to prove that:

  • You were owed a duty of care.
  • Someone else breached this duty of care.
  • You suffered whiplash injuries as a result.

One of the most important aspects of making whiplash injury claim is collecting evidence to prove that someone else is responsible for your injuries due to them breaching their duty of care. We’ll discuss this further in the next section.

To learn more about how to make a claim for whiplash injuries, contact our team of helpful advisors today. They can evaluate your whiplash compensation claim for free, and could potentially connect you with one of our personal injury solicitors.

The Whiplash Reform Programme

The Whiplash Reform Programme has changed the way that certain low-value injury claims are made. It now means that any injury sustained by a driver or passenger over the age of 18 must be made through an online portal and the compensation amounts will be based on the tariff for the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021. There might be circumstances where these amounts are applied to claims that don’t need to be made through the portal. It is worth noting, though, that the scheme only covers those within a vehicle. It does not cover pedestrians, cyclists or other road users.

The big question, of course, is how do you know if your injuries are worth £5,000 or less? The answer is – you don’t, and therein lies a problem with the new scheme. Although the reform programme promises to guide claimants in what their claim might be worth, it might not be an accurate process for untrained individuals to follow.

Call our advisors for free advice about the best way for you to make a whiplash claim.

Can You Claim Whiplash After 3 Years?

As stated above, there are some time limit exceptions when claiming for whiplash. These include:

  • Those who lack the mental capacity to make their own claim for whiplash. In these cases, the limitation period is suspended indefinitely. During this time, a court-appointed litigation friend can begin the claiming process on their behalf. However, if the injured party regains this mental capacity and a claim was not made for them, they will have three years from the date it was deemed they recovered this capacity to begin the process.
  • Those under the age of 18 are also unable to start their own claim. For these parties, the time limit is paused until they turn 18. Before this, a litigation friend could make a claim on their behalf. However, if they turn 18 and a claim was not made for them, they will have three years from the date of their 18th birthday to start a claim.

Contact our advisors to discuss your question, ‘Can you claim for whiplash?’. They can check your claim and see if you are within the limitation period.

Examples Of Compensation Payouts In Whiplash Claims

We can offer some guidance on how much compensation could be awarded for a whiplash claim. However, each case is unique, and settlements for whiplash claims in the UK could vary. 

Below, we have provided a table with guideline payout amounts for whiplash injury claims made the traditional way. The figures are taken from a document called the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This is used to help value claims made in England and Wales.

Please remember, however that this is purely guidance. If you call our team, we could provide case-specific advice and support. Please not that the first entry and last two entries have not been taken from the JCG.

Compensation Table

SeverityPayment LevelNotes
Multiple Serious Injuries And Special DamagesUp to £250,000+Multiple serious injuries that are combined with multiple severe financial losses, like the cost of mobility aids and medical treatments.
Back injuries - Severe (i) £91,090 to £160,980The most severe injuries resulting in damage to nerves and the cord of the spine.
Back injuries - Severe (ii) £74,160 to £88,430Injuries that carry special features that take them out of lower brackets. For example, an injury that impedes sexual function or results in loss of sensation.
Back injuries -Moderate (ii) £12,510 to £27,760More common injuries like muscle or ligament damage causing back pain
Neck Injuries- Severe (i) In the region of £148,330
The upper end of the scale will mean that the neck injury also affects the upper spine, resulting in paralysis for the higher payment. Severe neck injury may also mean headaches, severe soft tissue damage leading to a chronic, long-term condition.
Neck Injuries- Severe (ii) £65,740 to £130,930Serious disc fractures or damage to cervical spine discs that results in considerably severe disability.
Neck Injuries- Severe (iii) £45,470 to £55,990Fractures, dislocations, serious damage to soft tissue.
Neck Injuries- Moderate (i) £24,990 to £38,490
Fractures, dislocations and the like that cause immediate symptoms that might mean a fusion of the spine is required.
Whiplash Tariff£4,345This tariff is for claimants suffering from both the symptoms of whiplash and a minor psychological injury for 18-24 months.
Whiplash Tariff£4,215This tariff is for claimants suffering from the symptoms of whiplash for 18-24 months.

For information on claiming for whiplash injuries in the UK, call our team.

What Else Can You Include In A Whiplash Payout?

Various factors will affect a compensation payout. This is why we cannot provide the average claim for whiplash in the UK.

Firstly, successful whiplash claims will include compensation for pain and suffering. This is known as general damages. This is discussed further in the next section.

Some whiplash claims may also include special damages. Special damages are paid to help recover any expenses caused due to having a whiplash injury. However, you must have evidence of your losses to include special damages as part of your whiplash claim. In car accident claims for whiplash, special damages proof could include your receipts, invoices, or payslips.

Examples of what you could claim for under special damages:

  • Loss of earnings.
  • Repairs and replacements of property that was damaged.
  • Medical expenses, including therapy, prescription costs or cosmetic surgery.
  • Carer costs.
  • Home and vehicle adaptions.
  • Travel expenses, such as taxis to medical appointments.

Call our advisors for free advice about what could be included in your claim for whiplash.

Make A Car Accident Claim No Win No Fee Basis Today

If you suffered whiplash injuries as a result of someone else’s negligence, you may be eligible to claim compensation for whiplash. You could do so with the support of a No Win No Fee solicitor who could offer you a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA).

Should you hire a No Win No Fee solicitor for your whiplash from a car accident claim, you usually won’t be charged upfront for your solicitor’s services. If your claim is successful, a success fee will be taken from your whiplash payout. Should your whiplash claim be unsuccessful, you typically won’t be expected to pay for your solicitor’s services.

Free legal advice about claiming for whiplash in the UK is available from our advisors. They can also assess the validity of your whiplash from a car accident claim. If it seems like your claim is eligible, you could be passed on to our solicitors.

To get in touch:

Learn More About Making A Whiplash Claim

Further reading:

If you have further questions about a whiplash claim please get in touch.