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Direct Line Insurance Claims Guide – How To Claim Compensation For Whiplash

How To Make Whiplash Claims Against Direct Line Insurance

It’s fairly common for somebody involved in a road traffic accident to suffer whiplash injuries. If the accident was caused by another driver’s negligence then it is only right that a compensation claim is considered. In this guide, we’re going to explain how to make whiplash claims against Direct Line insurance if that’s who the other driver holds a policy with. Also, we’ll explain what you can claim for, how much compensation you could be entitled to and how No Win, No Fee personal injury claims work.

Whiplash compensation claims against Direct Line insurance guide

Here at Legal Expert, we have a team of advisors who could help you begin a Direct Line insurance claim by offering a no-obligation assessment and free legal advice. Furthermore, if your case is strong enough, our personal injury solicitors could help you claim on a No Win, No Fee basis. If you’d like to discuss your options regarding a Direct Line whiplash compensation claim right away, please call 0800 073 8804.

Alternatively, to find out more about how to claim for whiplash through insurance companies, please continue reading.

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A Guide To Whiplash Claims Against Direct Line

When claiming for whiplash, you have several options available to you. The claim could be made using your own policy, or, as we’ll explain in this guide, you could make whiplash claims against Direct Line insurance (and other insurers too) if the accident wasn’t your fault.

In this guide, we’re mainly talking about whiplash sustained in car accidents, but you could also make a personal injury claim if you’ve suffered whiplash due to an assault, an accident in a contact sport, an accident at work or a fall.

To be eligible to make a claim, you’ll need to be able to show that:

  • You were involved in an accident;
  • Which was caused by another road user’s negligence;
  • And caused you to suffer whiplash (and possibly other injuries).

Also, you’ll need to ensure you’re claiming within the personal injury claims time limit. In general, this is 3-years from the date of the accident. Alternatively, the date can start from the date your injuries were diagnosed by a doctor. Later in this guide, we’ll explain exactly how No Win, No Fee agreements work and when a personal injury lawyer might offer one.

If you think that you could make a Direct Line car accident claim, why not call our team of advisors today? There’s no pressure or obligation to proceed and we’re happy to provide free advice about your options.

What Occurs During A Whiplash Injury?

As mentioned earlier, whiplash injuries can be caused by any number of different accidents. Essentially it occurs when a collision (either high or low speed) forces the head to move suddenly. Information from the NHS suggests that symptoms of whiplash aren’t always immediately present and can take several hours to become obvious. That might be because adrenaline masks the symptoms in the immediate aftermath of an accident.

Some of the more common symptoms of whiplash include:

  • Mild to severe headaches.
  • Neck pain.
  • Head or neck stiffness which may make it difficult to move or turn the head.
  • Muscle spasms and pain in the upper arms and shoulders.

Advice offered by the NHS suggests that you shouldn’t wear a neck brace because they don’t help with whiplash symptoms. Also, you might be tempted to rest your neck. In fact, the NHS says this won’t help and it might be better to try and carry on with everyday tasks. This might be painful but should help your recovery. Paracetamol and ibuprofen can be used as pain relief.

When thinking about whiplash claims against Direct Line insurance, we’d recommend you visit your GP (or local accident and emergency) if you suspect you’re suffering from whiplash. They are best placed to assess the severity of your injuries and provide the correct treatment. Furthermore, medical records from a doctor can be used as evidence in your claim as they could help prove how you suffered.

Should I Claim Against My Own Car Insurance?

Wherever possible, we’d recommend that if another driver is responsible for the road traffic accident which caused your whiplash injuries, you should claim against their insurance policy. Whiplash claims against Direct Line car insurance should mean that your own policy isn’t affected. For instance, your no claims bonus won’t be lost, your premium shouldn’t be affected and furthermore, you won’t have to pay a policy excess.

As you’ll see in the next section, and in our own experience, it’s better to claim against somebody else’s policy using a personal injury solicitor. Our solicitors have decades of experience handling road traffic accidents claims. Their experience means they’ve got specialist knowledge of how the process works and will strive to ensure you get as much compensation as possible.

If you’re not sure how to claim or which policy to claim against, please call and we’ll discuss your options once we understand what’s happened in your case.

Whiplash Auto Insurance Claim Insights

The Financial Conduct Authority, which regulates insurance providers in the UK, carried out research which concluded that you can receive higher compensation payments if:

  • You use somebody to help you with a claim, such as a solicitor, and;
  • You reject the first settlement amount offered by an insurer.

This is probably because any insurance company is acting in its own interests, not the claimants. They want to settle for as little as possible. Since they know what a typical whiplash injury costs them, they could try to offer you less in the hope that you settle quickly.

However, when you hire a personal injury solicitor to help you claim, they’ll be able to help you obtain medical evidence to try and justify a higher payment. This is important because compensation is paid to help with your recovery which means, if you accept a low settlement amount, you might find yourself out of pocket if the injuries persist longer than expected.

If you have been offered a car insurance whiplash compensation settlement offer and are not sure if it’s fair or not, please call and check with an advisor before accepting it.

Could I Claim Against Direct Line If I Was Partially At Fault?

If you were partially to blame for the accident which caused your injuries, whiplash claims against Direct Line insurance and other providers can be settled in a couple of different ways:

  • Split liability claims: You might agree that although the other driver caused the accident, you could’ve been partly to blame. Therefore, you might agree that you were 25% to blame and they were 75%. If that’s the case, you can still claim against their insurance policy. The claim will be handled in the normal way and when a settlement amount is agreed, you’ll receive 75% of the total compensation.
  • Knock-for-knock claims: When both parties agree that they were at fault, the insurance companies might agree to settle on a knock-for-knock basis. This means the companies will pay compensation to their own client. While this is good for the insurance companies as they’ll reduce their own legal fees, it’s not so good for you. While you will receive compensation, you might suffer in the future because your no claims bonus and insurance premiums might be affected. Also, you’ll probably have to pay the policy excess in knock-for-knock claims.

If you’re struggling to work out whether you should accept part of the blame for your accident, please call a member of our team. We’ll assess what happened and provide expert advice.

Should I Accept The First Offer From Direct Line?

There are times when an insurer might contact you directly following when they’ve been told about your accident. This is because they might want to make you a settlement offer. However, the first offer might not always be the one you should accept.

If you receive a call from the Direct Line claims number, here are some things we think you should consider:

  • The amount they offer will probably be less than you’d be awarded by a court or if a personal injury solicitor was acting on your behalf.
  • There’s no pressure to accept the offer because you could have up to 3-years from the date of the accident to settle.
  • Ensure you’ve been assessed medically before accepting an offer. Without an assessment, you won’t know how your injuries are going to affect you both in the short and long-term.
  • You don’t have to use a solicitor appointed by an insurer; you are free to choose your own.
  • Check that you fully understand any paperwork you’re asked to sign.
  • There’s no obligation to accept any offer you receive.
  • Remember that if you accept an offer, it will be a final offer. There’s no option to go back and ask for more compensation in the future. That’s true even if your symptoms get worse over time.

What Are Pre-Medical Settlement Offers?

As with the previous section, during whiplash claims against Direct Line insurance, you might be contacted and offered a pre-medical settlement offer. We’d strongly recommend you do not accept these.

A pre-medical offer is made by an insurer without any medical evidence of what injuries you’ve suffered. That means you, and the insurer, don’t know the extent of your injuries yet. It might be tempting to accept a quick cash offer, but the chances are that the compensation won’t be enough.

So why would an insurer make this type of offer? Well, in short, it’s to save them money. They’ll know from their own claims data the typical amount of compensation paid out for whiplash injuries. Therefore, if they can settle early, they’ll reduce how much they pay and save on legal fees too.

A major problem with accepting a pre-medical offer is that you don’t know how your injuries will affect you. They might only be short-term but what if the injuries persist and cause you problems for years to come? As any settlement offer is final, you won’t be able to receive any more compensation which means you could suffer physically as well as financially.

If, however, you turn down a pre-medical offer and use one of our solicitors to help you claim, you’ll receive a medical assessment from an independent doctor. Using the report from the medical assessment, your solicitor will be able to ask for the correct amount of compensation and justify it with medical evidence.

Calculating Compensation Settlements Made Against Direct Line

To help you understand the types of compensation paid out in whiplash auto insurance claims, we’ve provided the personal injury claims calculator table below. While it’s impossible to say what amount of compensation you’ll receive, as every claim is different, it gives an idea of some amounts paid for certain injuries. These figures have been taken from the Judicial College Guidelines, a legal publication used by solicitors and the courts to value claims. 

Type of Injury Severity Compensation Range Details
Neck Injury Minor (iii) Up to £2,300 This compensation range is for soft tissue damage with full recovery within 3 months.
Neck Injury Minor (ii) £2,300 to £4,080 This compensation range is for soft tissue damage with full recovery within 1 year.
Neck Injury Moderate (i) £23,460 to £36,120 This compensation range is for fractures or dislocations that might need spinal fusion.
Neck Injury Severe (iii) £42,680 to £52,540 This compensation range is for dislocations, fractures and severe soft tissue damage which leads to severe conditions, extensive treatment and significant disability of a permanent nature.
Shoulder Injury Minor (i)-(iii) £2,300 to £7,410 This compensation range is for painful soft tissue damage to the shoulder where full recovery is made within in less than two years.
Shoulder Injury Moderate (c) £7,410 to £11,980 This compensation range is for soft tissue damage which takes over 2-years to recover from and also injuries like frozen shoulder.
Shoulder Injury Serious (b) £11,980 to £18,020 This compensation range is for shoulder dislocations or brachial plexus damage which results in movement loss with pain in the shoulder, neck and elbow.
Shoulder Injury Severe (a) £18,020 to £45,070 This compensation range is for brachial plexus damage which leads to significant disabilities.

As you’ll notice, every injury has a severity associated with it. This means that a minor injury is awarded less compensation than a severe injury. Therefore, your solicitor needs to demonstrate, with evidence, the exact nature of your injuries. This will help ensure you receive the right level of compensation for the suffering caused by your accident.

Once our advisors have assessed your claim, a solicitor could let you know about how much compensation you could be entitled to. The figures above are for one part of your claim. To find out what else could be included, please see the next section.

Other Damages You May Be Compensated For

A compensation package can be made of two heads of claim: general damages and special damages. General damages are awarded for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity inflicted by the injuries. The valuations of general damages have been outlined in the table above. Special damages are awarded to compensate you for any financial losses or expenses that may have been incurred, or perhaps will be incurred in the future. Here are some examples of the types of damages you can claim for: 

  • Medical Costs – You might think that because the NHS provides free treatment, there won’t be any medical costs to claim. However, the cost of prescriptions and over the counter medicines can soon build up.
  • Travel Costs – If you make trips to and from the doctor or a hospital, you could claim back fuel costs and parking costs as part of your claim. Also, if your injuries prevent you from driving, you could claim for any alternate travel arrangements you pay for.
  • Care Costs – In some cases where professional care is required to help you recover, the cost of the carer could be included in the claim.
  • Loss of Earnings – Should you need time off work because you need to visit a doctor or to recover if you lose any income it could be included in your claim. Furthermore, in cases which affect you in the long-term, you could include future lost income too.
  • Damaged Property – When items such as clothing, spectacles, phones or jewellery are damaged in an accident, you could ask for the cost of replacing them. In some cases, you could ask for the costs of repairing the item too.

To help your solicitor claim for special damages you should try to keep hold of receipts, parking tickets or bank statements which show the expenditure. Also, we recommend that you keep a diary of your spending because it can be quite tricky to remember every last detail when your solicitor goes through your claim with you.

Finally, if you are unsure whether you’ll be able to claim an expense back, please check with your solicitor before committing to it. They should be able to advise you and explain whether it can be claimed back or not.

No Win, No Fee Claims Against Direct Line Insurance

When a No Win, No Fee solicitor takes on a case, they’ll provide you with a Conditional Fee Agreement or CFA. This is the contract between you and the solicitor. Before they do that, though, they’ll have to check if your case is strong enough as they risk not being paid if the claim does not succeed.

When you are both happy to continue, you’ll sign the CFA. It will explain that you do not have to pay any fees upfront or during the claim and that if your claim is unsuccessful, you will not have to pay any of the fees your solicitor has incurred in pursuing your case.

In the event your claim is successful, your solicitor may ask for a small contribution toward their fees. This is known as a success fee and would be deducted from the compensation awarded at the end of the claim. Don’t worry, success fees are legally capped and will be agreed with you before the claim begins. 

Our solicitors can handle whiplash claims against Direct Line insurance on a No Win, No Fee basis. This way, you have financial peace of mind and confidence to pursue justice. To find out if you’re eligible to claim on this basis, please get in touch.

Talk To Us Today

Hopefully, you now know all you need to about making whiplash claims against Direct Line insurance. If you are ready to begin a claim using Legal Expert, then you can contact us by:

  • Telephone: Call our team of friendly professional advisors today on 0800 073 8804.
  • Live Chat: Speak online to an advisor from any page throughout this website.
  • Email: Send details of your claim to and we’ll get back to you.
  • Online: Submit your claim using our online claim form and we’ll call back at a convenient time.

You can contact us 24-hours a day and 7-days a week. Our advisors are friendly and experts in making claims so they won’t waste your time with irrelevant questions.

When you get in touch, we’ll start by offering a free assessment of your claim. We’ll look at what happened and also what evidence you have to support the claim. There’s no obligation or pressure on you to proceed but if we believe your claim is strong enough, we could introduce you to one of our No Win, No Fee personal injury solicitors.

Claims Guides And Resources

Finally, now you’ve reached the end of this guide about whiplash claims against Direct Line insurance, we’ve decided to provide some further links, guides and resources which we hope you’ll find helpful. 

Whiplash Injuries – This helpful guide from the NHS covers whiplash injuries, treatment and advises on when you should see a medical professional.

Claims Process For Whiplash – A government consultation about how whiplash claims are processed and handled.

Health And Safety Executive – The HSE provide resources for employers to help prevent accidents at work so that injuries to employees are avoided.

Road Traffic Accident Claims – A more in-depth look at when you could claim compensation for injuries sustained during a road traffic accident.

Claims For Assault Injuries – Whiplash can be caused by crimes such as assault. Therefore, you may find this guide useful.

Accident At Work Injury Claims – This up to date article explains when you could claim for injuries caused by an accident at work.

Other Guides You Can Read

Thanks for reading our guide about whiplash claims against Direct Line. If you need any further information or advice, please call and speak with a member of our team.


Written by Hambridge

Edited by Billing

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