Individuals who find themselves in a car accident that wasn’t their fault could have a right to compensation for damages. The question many find themselves asking is, “How much is my accident worth?” Often, insurance companies try to settle with injured parties for as little as possible. When it comes to compensation via a settlement or other means, it is imperative to know what is reasonable.
Legally, individuals are eligible for compensation to try and make up for the losses incurred by the accident. Compensation should balance out any damages, injuries, and losses suffered. Money can be recovered for: the full cost of all medical bills, the total cost of care repairs or other lost or damaged property, and money to offset any lost wages due to the accident.
In essence, how much money people can get from a car accident should at a minimum pay for all of the abovementioned costs. Ideally, the amount of compensation received would be more than those costs. Receiving additional compensation for an accident will likely require the injured party to claim and prove that they experienced pain and suffering directly caused by the accident.
When an individual seeks compensation for pain and suffering, they often will need to do more than file a claim through an insurance company. In many cases, legal representation will be necessary. If the lawyer and the insurance company are unable to reach a suitable agreement, the case will likely be taken to court.
Once in front of the judge, they will take into account who’s at fault in the car accident, the type of injury, treatment plan, length of therapy, loss of income, and severity of the accident. In many instances, a settlement is only offered when the medical treatment is complete. Individuals who suffer a permanent injury will likely receive compensation with the injury under consideration.
For an individual to claim pain and suffering, they must have suffered an injury from the accident. Therefore, it is crucial that the individual sought medical attention immediately after the accident. As some injuries, like whiplash, don’t always manifest themselves immediately, it is advisable that all individuals seek medical attention after an accident, whether they think they need to or not.
When filing an injury claim with another driver’s insurance company, the compensation is limited by their policy maximum. So if $30,000 in damages were sustained, but their insurance limit is $20,000, the injured party may want to consider suing the other party individually to obtain the additional $10,000.
On average, most car accident settlements range between $14,000 and $28,000, depending on the specifics of the accident. Additionally, individuals can expect to receive more compensation if the other driver was driving under the influence.
There are many online accident settlement calculators available to help estimate the amount of compensation that could be expected. Keep in mind that these calculators are not always accurate and are not meant to be a replacement for sound legal advice.
Typically, individuals have one or two years after the accident to file a lawsuit. A minor can file a lawsuit any time before they turn eighteen years of age.