How Much is the Average Settlement for a Car Accident Case?
If you or someone close to you has been involved in a Texas car accident, you might have heard about personal injury claims and the compensation they offer crash victims. One of the first questions that attorneys hear from clients that have suffered serious injuries in car accidents is, “How much can I get in a car accident claim?”
It’s a question that an injured person has every right to ask. In fact, Texas law ensures that people who have suffered injuries because of someone else’s negligence have the opportunity to make their case for compensation. But, like many other questions that people have after suffering an injury, the answer depends on the unique circumstances of your case.
How Much Can You Get in a Car Accident Case? Well, it Depends.
Compensation in car accident cases can range from thousands to millions of dollars. There are a few factors that determine how much you can seek in damages. Damages are the costs you face due to a car accident. Damages include:
Medical Expenses: The medical bills you encounter after an injury in a car accident will constitute a sizable portion of your damages. Medical expenses are incredibly costly. They can include…
- Ambulatory care
- Diagnostic procedures
- Prescription medications
- Care from specialists,
- Surgical procedures
- Medical devices
- Personal care assistance, such as nursing care or nursing homes.
Loss of Income: Another major factor that will determine how much you seek in a personal injury claim is the impact of your injury on your income. You will not only seek compensation for the time you missed at work, but you will also need to calculate how much future income will be lost because of time missed or because of an injury’s impact on your ability to earn income.
In many cases, someone with a debilitating injury will never be able to make the same amount of money as they did before their injury, so it is very important to factor in an injury’s impact on your future earnings.
Property Damage: Damages in a personal injury claim should also include any costs related to your vehicle, such as repairs or replacements. The extent of the repairs needed and the value of your vehicle will obviously be key considerations when determining property damage.
“Non-economic” Damages: Non-economic damages is a term used to describe the consequences of an injury or accident that aren’t necessarily financial in nature. They might include pain, suffering, disfigurement or emotional suffering. Calculating how much you should seek in non-economic damages is difficult for someone unfamiliar with the personal injury claims process.
It’s also worth noting that the adjective “non-economic” is somewhat misleading. Anyone who has suffered from chronic pain, post-traumatic stress disorder or disfigurement knows that there can be very tangible financial implications of these conditions. Any of these conditions can inhibit our performance at work or render us unable to perform routine tasks like we did before suffering them.
Factors that Determine How Successful Your Car Accident Settlement Will Be
In addition to figuring how much you can seek in damages in your claim, you’ll also need to consider a couple of other very important factors, such as:
Your ability to negotiate and make a case. The ability to negotiate a satisfactory settlement (often with an insurance company) or to make your case in front of a jury is critical when seeking compensation.
How obvious it is that the other driver is at fault. If a drunk driver caused your injury and it’s clear that the car accident was the result of another driver’s negligence, then an insurance company will be more likely to comply with your request for compensation. However, car accidents often have causes that are less clear-cut and require more research, case-building and explanation to get compensation that truly reflects your needs.
The insurance coverage the other driver has. If the other driver in your car accident has adequate insurance coverage, you’ll be more likely to get the compensation you deserve. Unfortunately, in many cases, a driver is either underinsured or uninsured, so even if an insurance company is willing to pay you without argument, they will offer you less than you deserve.
If this all seems a bit complex, you should know that you don’t need to go it alone.
There are clearly many factors at play when determining how much you should ask for in a claim, and even more factors dictating how likely you are to get adequate compensation after a car accident. This is why so many people hire attorneys to help them with the process.
There are several advantages to hiring a skilled personal injury attorney. They will handle all the paperwork and correspondence with insurers, other attorneys and any other parties involved. They will make sure that everything is filed on time and in accordance with the law.
Good attorneys go beyond handling the basic tasks required to file a claim. They conduct thorough investigations, calculate damages that truly reflect the costs you face and build a case that can be made in front of a jury. These efforts make it much more likely that you will get payment you deserve and not settle for a fraction of what you might get if you decided to do things on your own.
Guajardo & Marks is Here to Help
Our Dallas car accident attorneys have helped hundreds of people across Texas get the payment they need. We prepare every case to go all the way to trial. We believe that only a thoroughly prepared case will get maximum results for our clients, so even if it results in a settlement, it is substantial. The other side always knows that we mean business, and our clients know that we’ll get them the compensation they deserve.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, don’t hesitate to call us today to schedule a free consultation. If we don’t win your case, you owe us nothing.