I occasionally will see clients who have been in a couple of accidents within weeks of each other. For example, I have a client who was rear ended on the Interstate in Seattle in December, 2012 and then moved to Palm Coast, Florida where she was again rear ended in January. Who pays? What is fair? Should she be able to collect double or what?
The law requires her doctors to apportion the damages she had in each accident if they can. In her case, she mostly had right arm injuries from accident #1, and some neck injuries, and left leg injuries and neck injuries in #2. Since the doctor in accident #1 was in Seattle he obviously only treated her for injuries cause by the first wreck. Doctor for accident #2 is apportioning his time for treating accident #1 and #2, and both so there will be sensible apportioned bill at the end of her case. The same principal is at work if one of the accidents causing injuries was a slip and fall and the other was a auto case.
If it is not possible to apportion the treatment, and resulting pain and suffering what happens then? Then both drivers are fully responsible for all injuries. If the bills for #1 are $10,000 and the bills from #2 are also $10,000 and the pain and suffering is also equal then each driver will owe half of her total claim. If the at fault driver for #1 or #2 had no insurance then my client will make a claim against her own UM carrier for the amount owed by the at fault driver who had no insurance.
This stuff gets really complicated! Just writing about it is hard to do since there is so many possible variations of what can happen. I suggest you definitely should see a qualified lawyer to discuss and explain your legal rights if you have been in several accidents. I once had a client who was rear-ended 3 times in 6 months. It was no laughing matter to her. I recommended she get a Hummer!