What NOT to Do After a Car Accident in Orange County

What NOT to Do After an Orange County, CA Car Accident

car accident settlement advice orange county

Today is just like any other day. You hop in your car, jump on the freeway and get movin towards work. And just like every other day, there’s the same slowing traffic just before you hit the 55 and 5 merge. As you begin to slow down, you catch a glimpse in the mirror and you have a sudden sickening sinking feeling because you immediately realize today is NOT going to be just like very other day.


Just as you thought, although it’s not that easy to think straight right now because your head is in a swirl and you feel as if you are under water. That glimpse in the mirror flashes back to you; the driver behind looking down in his lap rather than at the slowing cars, your car, in front. The noise of the crash still reverberates in your ears.

No, today is NOT like every other day because today has started out with a car accident.

Fast forward two weeks

Fortunately for you, you read this blog post What to Do After a Car Accident in Orange County, and you followed the advice therein. Your car is in the shop being repaired, you are on your way to see your chiropractor for whiplash and concussion treatment in a rental car and things are under control.

But now you are about to be thrown a curve ball…

You get a call and the voice mail is from the other person’s automobile insurance company. The claims representative  (they like that term now because “claims adjuster,” which implies adjusting your claim ever downward to save their company lots of money, doesn’t focus study as well) says she would like to come to your house and take a statement and talk to you about your claim.

“Wait a minute,” you think to yourself. I already spent half an hour at lunch talking to this woman and she took a recorded statement. What else can she possibly want?

Here’s what she is trying to do:

She wants a face to face meeting with you to size you up. This claims rep is a specialist. Her job is to shake easily intimidated claimants loose in order to minimize damages to her company. She wants to look at your lifestyle, see your facial expressions and how you handle yourself because she will get an idea of what kind of trial witness you could potentially be. It’s all about profiling. She’s going to handle a financially stressed, twenty-something single mom in an apartment different than a middle aged, CEO living on a golf course near the beach.

In any event, at the end of the polite conversation in which promises will be made by her to take care of you, she will slide over a check (amounts vary from $200 to $3,000) and ask you to sign a release of liability form. That’s the curve ball. It looks like an easy hit, but as soon as you swing, the ball jiggles and swoosh, strike!

Unless that check is a very big check with lots of numbers on the left side of the decimal point, DO NOT ACCEPT IT.

The offer by this first rep is always a very low ball offer–always. It is the reason she is there. To get you to accept a settlement that is any where from one tenth to one half the value of your actual case. And she’s good at it. She probably has a 50% average or more at duping unsuspecting car wreck victims.

What you should do at this point is:

Smile, kindly slide the check back and ask for a complete offer in writing for you to consider. And tell her you do not make major decisions on the spot and to please not call that you will return your decision by mail when you are ready. Stand up, shake hands, nod to the door.

At this point, 2 weeks post-accident, you have no idea how much your medical costs will be. You may need an MRI in the next few weeks, you may need to be referred to another specialist for co-treatment, you could be one of the 40% of rear-impact car accident victims who suffer a permanent injury. You have no idea what the value of your case is, but the claims rep does. It’s her business to know and she is eager and may get very aggressive to get you to accept her “kind” offer, but don’t.

When you reject her offers, an interesting thing will happen: she will go away. You will receive a letter from a different claims rep who says they are taking over your file. “The closer” has failed, so now they put your file with a regular adjuster. After that, you will usually receive less calls or letters and they understand that you will not be taken advantage of easily. The new rep will try later during settlement negotiations, but that’s a blog post to be written at a later time.

So what not to do after a car accident?

Do NOT Accept Any Initial Offer to Settle Your Car Accident Claim Until You Know What Your Long-term Medical Outlook is and How Much It’s Worth







Car Accident Treatment Orange County

Car Accident Treatment Orange County

car accident treatment

Injuries from car accidents are different from every day neck or back pain.

The forces caused by a car wreck are like no other type of strain or injury. A collision that barely dents your rear bumper is enough to cause several G’s of force on your neck. Researchers have found that an impact of only 2.5 g’s is enough to cause damage to the neck ligaments. Other studies have shown that in order to see visible vehicle damage, the average speed must be between 9-15 mph. Some cars can be struck at over 25 mph and show no damage at all. Therefore, if your bumper shows damage, it is highly probable that you have suffered an injury.

The types of injuries after a car accident are due to excessive stretching or loading and include:

  • Ligament tears
  • Muscle strains
  • Joint cartilage damage
  • Disc tears and herniations
  • Nerve stretching injuries
  • Brain injuries (concussion) even without direct head trauma

Treatment for car accident injuries like these must be properly done

There are stages to car accident whiplash treatment. For example, if you have a fresh injury you cannot begin doing vigorous exercises right away. Although this is exactly what some physical therapists and general chiropractors do, which leads to prolonged pain and a delay in recovery.  Treatment at each stage must also be appropriate. Not providing relief of inflammation early on will result in a chronic injury.

Stage 1 treatment of recent car accident injury (1 hour to 2 weeks post accident)

The key here is to lessen inflammation and pain and maintain some range of motion.  Therapies such as ice, cold laser light therapy, electrical stimulation and gentle movement of the spine with chiropractic adjustments is good at this stage. Home range of motion stretching exercises are good as is resting with an ice pack or alternating heat and ice.  Physical activity should be as normal as possible, but nothing strenuous; no gym, no heavy lifting/bending at work, no amusement park rides, etc

This stage will last about a month, after which time your pain levels should be down by about 70%.

Stage 2 car wreck treatment (after 1 month post accident treatment)

At this stage of your auto accident injury care you are ready for what is called rehabilitation. Rehab is the process of returning you back to your normal strength, range of motion and biomechanics (how your body parts work as a unit). Treatment here usually involves active exercise with the therapist or doctor, traction or distraction of the spine, movement of the spine via adjustments, massage therapy to remove knots followed by ice or cold laser to alleviate pain and swelling after your tissues have been worked.

This is the longest stage of treatment and the most overlooked part by doctors and therapists. Many patients are released from care by their doctor or therapist because they have reached a point where they have no outward pain or symptoms and do not go through rehabilitation. This is a huge mistake and is definitely a leading cause of people suffering from chronic pain and impairment after an accidental injury.  Mild injuries require 1-2 months of rehab, moderate injuries 3-6 months and severe injuries 6-12 months.

Proper car accident treatment requires a knowledgeable doctor who has the training and experience to get your spine and body back to good working order, not merely symptomatic pain relief. For this reason, when you’ve been injured in a car accident, you should only consider doctors who are specifically trained in whiplash injury treatment.


What is Whiplash?

Car Accident Chiropractor Explains What Whiplash Is

Dr Barry Marks, Chiropractor, car accident whiplash specialist in Orange County, California.

A sudden jerk of the neck, like when your car gets hit by another car, can cause an injury that many people call “whiplash.” The term whiplash has been used so much and is so common in our vernacular that doctors now use the term to describe injuries after a car accident.  When a car is struck from behind, the quick jolt to the neck causes the spine to deform, straining and tearing the supporting ligaments of the neck or back. If the jolt is hard enough, it can cause discs, the joints themselves and even the brain and nerves to be damaged.

Whiplash injuries can range from minimal to severe. The long term affects of whiplash has been studied extensively and researchers indicate that approximately 40% of rear-impact whiplash injuries result in chronic long-term pain, known as “late whiplash.” Late whiplash occurs when damage has occurred to the facet joints or discs of the neck.

A car accident doctor specializing in whiplash injuries is well versed in uncovering bodily injury caused by automobile accidents and can determine the severity of a whiplash injury on the initial examination using objective guidelines. Knowing the severity or grade of injury can determine how long treatment will take and what the prospects for full recovery are.

If you’ve suffered a car accident whiplash injury, consult a car accident chiropractor in your area.

orange-car-accident-telephone-widget2Orange County Car Accident Chiropractor
Dr. Barry Marks
1745 W Orangewood Ave #114
Orange, CA 92868
(714) 938-0575


Car Accident Chiropractor Orange County, CA

Dr Barry Marks, Chiropractor Car Accident Injury Specialist

dr barry marks car accident chiropractor

Many doctors, both medical and chiropractic, treat car accident whiplash injuries. These doctors are free to treat any condition that is in their scope of practice.  Just like any medical doctor, specialized or not, can perform surgery or give you a face lift, if there is a willing patient.  But do you really want your general medical doctor doing brain surgery on you? I doubt it.

Chiropractors are trained in a board array of musculoskeletal disorders that cause pain. Any general chiropractor can do a half way decent job of treating a whiplash injury for pain relief. But do they understand the big picture and long term ramifications if they merely relieve pain and do not rehabilitate the injured spine? Do they know the specific language and formatting of reports that your lawyer will be able to admit into court as evidence?

Personal injury is a specialized area of practice. There is much to know to not only treat the patient successfully, but to also present the medical facts in a manner and language your attorney and more importantly insurance companies and juries will understand. It can take years of study to gain this knowledge and it is tedious work.

The average medical doctor or chiropractor do not have adequate training in this area.

Well meaning doctors may take on your case and provide care, but all the while they are undermining the case. Improper language in the file, poor documentation of the facts, an incomplete examination, the wrong x-rays, incorrect diagnoses, these and many others are all the minor paperwork details that the average chiropractor or MD just has no training in or desire to be fastidious about. But, trust me, these are all crucial elements to a well documented case that will allow you, the injured party, to recover as completely as possible medically, but also in your legal case.

The proper diagnosis of a car accident whiplash injury takes time and expertise.  A thorough understanding of the mechanism of the crash is needed to understand what body parts may be injured even if they are not immediately painful.  The car accident doctor must know the red flag signs that require immediate transfer to a hospital. A complete understanding of head injuries and how to detect even minor ones is vitally important. A mild brain injury will cause a whiplash injury case to be prolonged and recovery slow and possibly incomplete. Undiagnosed the chiropractor may dismiss your case as a minor strain. This could lead to long term problems.

The bottom line is, if you’ve been in a car accident, you need to be evaluated by a car accident chiropractor who specializes in this complex area.

Please review the following qualifications and see if your current or past doctor or chiropractor can stack up:

dr barry marks chiropractor orange caBarry Marks, DC

  • Chiropractor since 1986
  • Post-Doctorate Specialty training in orthopedics
  • Associate Clinical Professor at a leading Chiropractic College
  • Qualified Medical Examiner, State of California
  • Independent Disability Evaluator, State of California
  • Post-Doctorate Specialty training whiplash traumatology
  • Advanced Graduate Whiplash and Brain Trauma at Spine Research Institute San Diego
  • Successfully treated thousands of car accident trauma victims

As you can see, Dr Barry Marks is a true car accident chiropractor specialist.

Additionally, he has available as needed other medical professionals who also specialize in personal injury for second opinions and co-treatment including:

  • Orthopedists/Orthopedic Surgeons
  • Neurologists/Neurosurgeons
  • Neuro-psychiatrists
  • Imaging centers and more

Dr. Marks also has available for your review a list of personal injury attorneys who he has worked with in the past and has found them to be effective, honorable and hard working.

For a Free Car Accident Consultation with Dr Marks, Call (714) 938-0575 or use the Contact-Map button on the menu.


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