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What Is The ‘Eggshell Skull’ Rule?

Imagine this scenario: you and your co-worker both have exactly the same accident at work – say a bump to the head. Your colleague gets little more than a bruise and shrugs it off within a couple of days. For you, the effects are more serious.

It turns out that your skull is more fragile, and more likely to be injured by that innocuous bump than other people. Your injury is more significant, even though the majority of the general population – like your co-worker – would not have experienced the same level of harm.

This is the basis of a fundamental legal doctrine known as ‘eggshell skull’ or ‘eggshell plaintiff.’ It means that a defendant must take the plaintiff as they find him. It doesn’t matter that most people would not have sustained a serious injury: you did, and it isn’t your fault.

Of course, this concept isn’t restricted to ‘eggshell skulls’ and head injuries – the principle is intrinsically woven throughout personal injury cases across the board. Broken legs, repetitive strain injuries, back injuries and all other types of injury are subject to the same doctrine.

Defendants may try to argue that they shouldn’t be held responsible for any unusual susceptibility to injury. They might even attempt to drive down the value of a case based on the argument that the accident would not have affected anyone else so profoundly.

There might be caveats and convolutions within all of this, and as with any injury case, you need a specialist attorney to handle them. Bighorn Law personal injury attorneys know the landscape and how to navigate it. We know that cases can turn on medical reports, and how crucial it is to assemble the right medical evidence from the right doctors.

When it comes to pursuing a case, there’s no one better to have in your corner than Bighorn Law. We have the expertise to negotiate the potential pitfalls of a complex claim, protect your rights and fight tirelessly for justice on your behalf.