How Long Should I Be Off Work For Whiplash?

By Stephen Bishop. Last Updated 29th April 2024. If you’ve been injured in the likes of a road traffic accident, you may have asked yourself the question “how long should I be off work for whiplash?” The answer is that it would depend on the severity of the injury you sustained.

Our guide to whiplash claims provides information on how this type of injury can be debilitating. We cover the symptoms of whiplash and what treatments are typically provided. We explain the length of time it may take you to recover from a whiplash injury, and we go into how long you may have to be off work.

We also look at the time you should take off work in order to fully recover and provide an idea of how much personal injury compensation you may be awarded in a successful claim against a party deemed responsible.

We then explain how a solicitor could represent you without asking you to pay a retainer (upfront fee) or ongoing fees once it is established you have a strong case against a responsible party.

To find out more on how long you should be off work for whiplash, please continue reading our guide by clicking on the sections below. Alternatively, if you want to discuss your case with a member of our Legal Helpline team, please do so by telephoning us on 0161 696 9685.

a man and woman looking at a piece of paper. the woman is wearing a neck brace

Jump To A Section

  1. How Long Should I Be Off Work For Whiplash?
  2. Can I Claim For A Whiplash Injury That Stopped Me From Working?
  3. What Are The Whiplash Injury Regulations?
  4. The Steps To Making A Whiplash Claim
  5. No Win No Fee Whiplash Injury Claims
  6. Quick Links

How Long Should I Be Off Work For Whiplash?

If you have suffered a whiplash injury, then you may be asking, “How long should I be off work for whiplash?”. The NHS says that symptoms of a whiplash injury usually get better within 2 to 3 months. However, the exact answer to this question will depend on a few factors. These include what type of work you do; how severe your injury is, and what your doctor has recommended.

You may also be asking, “Can I get a sick note for whiplash?” and whether it’s even necessary to get one. It again depends on how severe your injury is and how much it affects your ability to carry out your work duties. You usually won’t need a sick note if you are off work for less than a week. However, if you need to be off work for more than a week, then you can usually get a sick note from your GP.

If you have suffered a whiplash injury that has caused you to take time off work, then you may be eligible to claim compensation if you were hurt because another party breached a duty of care they owed you. To learn more about whether you have valid grounds to claim, read on or contact our advisors for free today.

Can I Claim For A Whiplash Injury That Stopped Me From Working?

In various scenarios, you are owed a duty of care by another party. 

For example, while using the roads, all road users owe each other a duty of care to use the roads in a responsible manner that prevents causing harm to themselves and others. They should also comply with the Road Traffic Act 1988 as well as the rules and regulations set out in the Highway Code.

Should a road user fail to adhere to their duty of care, this could result in an accident where you suffer a whiplash injury. For example, the driver behind you failed to notice you had come to a stop at a red light due to them being distracted by their phone. This causes them to crash into the back of your car, and you suffer a whiplash injury.

If you have suffered a whiplash injury, then you may have valid grounds to claim compensation if the following applies:

  • You were owed a duty of care by another party.
  • This duty of care was breached.
  • You suffered a whiplash injury because of this breach.

Will I Receive Sick Pay For Any Time Off Work?

If you require time off of work due to suffering a whiplash injury, you may be wondering if you are entitled to receive sick pay. Depending on the nature of your contract, you may be entitled to contractual sick pay. However, you will need to check with your employer as they are not legally obligated to provide you with this.

Alternatively, you may be able to receive statutory sick pay (SSP). You could receive £116.75 in SSP if you are too ill to work. It is paid by your employer for up to 28 weeks. However, certain eligibility requirements will need to be met.

You may also be eligible to receive compensation for a loss of earnings. To discuss your whiplash injury claim and see whether you may entitled to receive compensation for any lost earnings, you can contact our advisors.

What Are The Whiplash Injury Regulations?

If you’re seeking whiplash compensation, how you claim compensation has changed in some instances. The Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021 mean that you would need to claim through an alternative method if:

  • Your injury is worth £5,000 or less
  • You are over eighteen and were either a driver or a passenger
  • The injury occurred in either England or Wales

If your injury matches the above three criteria, you will need to claim using the method as detailed in the regulations. You would use an online portal to seek whiplash compensation as opposed to using the standard method.

However, you may be unsure how much your injury is worth. Our advisors can provide you with a second opinion regarding the potential value of your injury. This could help you understand the avenue you should take to seek compensation. To learn more, contact our team for free legal advice to see if you’re eligible to claim and to understand how much potential compensation you could receive.

The Steps To Making A Whiplash Claim

An important step in the whiplash claims process is collecting evidence. Evidence can help support your claim as it could prove who was liable for the accident and the injuries you suffered.

Some examples of evidence that you could collect to support your claim include:

  • A copy of your medical records stating your injury and the treatment you required.
  • Witness contact details so that they can provide a statement about the accident at a later date.
  • Dashcam or CCTV footage of the accident.
  • Photographs of the accident scene.

There may be other kinds of evidence that could help support your claim for whiplash. If you choose to work with a solicitor, they can evaluate all areas of your claim and help ensure that you have adequate evidence.

For more information on how to claim for whiplash or to see if you could be eligible to work with a solicitor on our panel, contact our advisors today.

No Win No Fee Whiplash Injury Claims

Once a solicitor has assessed your case and found that you have a valid and strong personal injury claim against a third party, you would be offered No Win No Fee terms.

No Win No Fee whiplash injury claims allow you to pursue your case for compensation without having to worry about the money it costs to have legal representation. This means your solicitor can begin their investigations without requesting that you pay them any fees to do so.

Your claim would be assessed during a no-obligation, initial consultation that is free of charge so you do not have to worry about paying for legal advice from the outset. No Win No Fee agreements are legal contracts drawn up between a solicitor and yourself that set out the Terms and Conditions of the agreement.

Included in this contract is the agreed percentage that you would pay if your case is successful, which is called a ‘success fee’. This would only be payable to your No Win No Fee lawyer when you receive whiplash injury compensation. It’s used to cover their costs in representing you.

Should your whiplash personal injury claim be unsuccessful, the ‘success fee’ would not be payable because of the No Win No Fee Agreement the solicitor signed, nor would you have to pay any of your lawyer’s fees.

To speak to one of our expert advisers about No Win No Fee claims, please get in touch today. You can do so in the following ways:

man holding neck in pain due to whiplash injury

Quick Links

The link below takes you to a guide on personal injury compensation and whiplash recovery time:

Personal injury compensation and whiplash recovery time

The link provided below takes you to a guide that explains the level of compensation you could be awarded in a successful whiplash injury claim:

Compensation for whiplash injuries

For more information on the symptoms associated with a whiplash injury, please follow the link provided below:

NHS symptoms whiplash

For more information on the treatment of a whiplash injury, please click on the link below:

Whiplash treatments

More Helpful Guides

Thank you for reading our guide. We hope it’s answered the question, “how long should I be off work for whiplash?”