Can a Minor Car Accident Cause Injury?

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After a minor car accident, you may initially walk away pain-free. However, that doesn’t mean you don’t have injuries.

Musculoskeletal damage can take time to present symptoms. It may take days, weeks, or even months for your injury to manifest. This is why experts advise that you seek medical attention immediately following any car accident, even a fender bender.

Common Injuries from Minor Car Accidents

You may think that a small accident couldn’t possibly leave you with an injury. However, medical professionals often see these common injuries after minor crashes.


Whiplash occurs when the small muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the cervical spine are suddenly jolted. This can lead to a misalignment of the spine. Swelling from these tears and strains can put pressure on your nerves, impacting the neck and shoulder area with pain and stiffness. It can also cause you to have more headaches that radiate from the base of your skull.

Lower Body Injuries

Your vehicle may not have much damage, but one common injury from these types of crashes is the imbalance of knee alignment. Your knees are bound together through an intricate system of muscles, ligaments, cartilage, tendons, and bone. The twisting motions from an accident can easily throw things out of alignment.

Pain and range of motion issues may occur immediately or may take time to develop. This is also true for the pelvis, hips, and lower back. Herniated discs are common from the jarring movements of a car accident, leaving with you a lifetime of aches and pains that may require surgery.

Steps to Take After Minor Car Accidents

Even if your accident seems to be a minor one, you shouldn’t assume you are fine. Adrenaline and shock often take over and mute the physical traumas in your body. This is why you should be sure to document your accident and injuries.

Even if you can walk away from the accident, seek medical treatment. It will be a huge relief if a medical professional declares you are free of injuries—but if not, you will have documentation to pursue compensation.

Take photos, too—both of any visible injuries and the damages done to your vehicle. When speaking to insurance representatives, be honest about any pain, discomfort, or symptoms you have. This ensures you protect your legal rights if you plan to file a claim.

If someone was suspected of drug-impaired driving, authorities would need to test their urine or blood to identify mind-altering substances in their system and a DUI lawyer would come to the scene.

Understanding the legal implications in such scenarios is crucial. If the accident involved any illegal activities, like driving under the influence or a hit-and-run, the suspect might be concerned about the possibility of arrest and incarceration. They may want to understand how jail records are maintained or how an inmate search works in case they end up in the system.

Know the Statute of Limitations for Tennessee

After a car accident, you have a certain amount of time limit to file a lawsuit. The statute of limitations for personal injury claims—including car accidents—in Tennessee is one year from the date the accident occurred.

You will need to act quickly to meet this deadline or your claim may be invalid. This would forbid you from seeking compensation. However, certain exceptions exist that may permit you to go forward with your case. To make sure you file your case on time or determine if you meet one of the permitted exceptions, contact a Nashville car accident attorney.

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About the Author: Brian Novak