Minor Impact Soft Tissue (MIST) Claims

What is a Mist Claim?

MIST is an acronym that means “Minor Impact Soft Tissue.” MIST is a classification used by some insurance companies such as Allstate to designate an automobile accident insurance claim that involves minimal visible damage to the claimant’s vehicle and a “soft tissue” injury.

What is Considered a Minor Impact?

Whether an impact is classified as minor by a particular insurance adjuster may be judged by the lack of visible damage to the injured claimant’s vehicle or it may be judged by the repair cost of the damage to the vehicle. Some insurance companies go by an arbitrary amount such as $1,000.00 or $1,500.00 that has been set by the company.  If the damage is below the arbitrary amount, then the claim is automatically classified as a minor impact collision.

What is a Soft Tissue Injury?

A Soft Tissue Injury generally refers to an injury to the connective tissues (ie muscles) that is not readily identifiable to the observer. Another commonly known name for soft tissue injury is a whiplash injury.  Despite the fact that these injuries can be extremely painful and even serious when they include injuries to the disk, concussions or other factors, insurance companies know that it is easier for them to convince a jury that the injured party is not really that hurt if they cannot see an injury with their own eyes—especially if there is not much visible damage to the vehicle to make the magnitude of the collision more obvious.

How MIST Claims Are Handled?

Every insurance company handles claims differently. However, one thing you should know is that if you hear the MIST term being tossed around by the adjuster about your claim, that is a good indication that he sees your case as small potatoes. His settlement offer will likely reflect the small value classification. One insurance company used to refer to these cases as “DOLF” files which meant: “Don’t Offer to settle Litigate Fully.” Many of them have the attitude that they will pay on these claims only when a jury orders them to.

What Can You Do?

You have two choices when your case gets tagged as a MIST claim. Get low-balled or get help. While an attorney that handles car accidents may be able to help get a better offer, it is not uncommon at all that these kind of cases have to be litigated and taken to trial.  In any event a free consultation from a personal injury trial lawyer might be worth your while.  Contact Simmons and Fletcher, P.C. today: 800-298-0111.


Paul Cannon

Paul Cannon has practiced personal injury trial law since 1995. He is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law (2005). He has earned recognition as a Super Lawyer by Thompson Reuters in 2017 & 2018, and as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer by the National Trial Lawyers Association in 2017. He is a Shareholder, trial lawyer and online marketing manager at Simmons and Fletcher, P.C. His legal writings have been published by the Texas Bar Journal, Business.com, Lawyer.com HG Legal Resources, Lawfirms.com, and others. He has been asked to give education talks and media interviews on dog bite law.