People who’ve been injured in car crashes may wonder “how much is my car accident settlement worth?” The answer to this question is different for every car accident case. How much a car accident settlement may be worth depends upon all the circumstances involved. Some accident settlements are worth thousands of dollars, some tens of thousands, and some much more.
Here are two main things that influence how much a car accident settlement may be worth:
- The seriousness of injuries
- Whether fault is shared.
To get a more precise idea of what your unique car accident settlement may be worth, it’s important to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer. A skilled West Texas attorney will advise you about the possible value of a car accident lawsuit based upon all the circumstances in your case. But read on to understand the basics of what goes into determining what an accident is worth.
I HAVE SERIOUS INJURIES–WHAT IS THE VALUE OF MY CAR ACCIDENT?
How badly you were injured will be a main factor in determining the value of your car accident. Generally, the worse your injuries are, the more you can ask for in an insurance claim or lawsuit.
People who are seriously injured might need multiple surgeries, therapies and other long-term medical care, which is very expensive. They may miss significant time at work and in some cases may never be able to work again. They could have burns or disfigurement that affects their physical and emotional well-being. A bad injury accident can affect the rest of a person’s life, not only physically but financially as well.
Once an experienced car accident attorney reviews your case, they can help you determine a possible value of your car accident based upon your injuries.
SHARED FAULT IN A CAR ACCIDENT CAN AFFECT WHAT YOUR SETTLEMENT IS WORTH
Even if you believe the other driver was at fault for causing your crash, if that person’s lawyer or their insurance company can prove that you shared any fault, what your accident settlement is worth will be reduced. In legal terms, Texas is a modified comparative negligence state. What this means to you is that if you are found to be at all responsible for your injury accident, your settlement will be reduced by your degree of fault.
For example, suppose you are rear-ended in a crash. Usually, a driver who rear-ends another car is at fault. But what if your brake lights weren’t working? You could share some of the fault. If it’s determined you are 20% at fault for the accident, your settlement will be reduced by that percentage. This is just one example scenario. In some cases fault is very clear, while in others it is not as straightforward.
Car accident lawyers know how to examine the evidence to prove fault in injury cases. An attorney will help improve your chances of not being made to share blame for your crash.
HOW MUCH CAN I GET FROM MY CAR ACCIDENT SETTLEMENT?
How much you can get from a car accident settlement is based on the damages involved. Damages are the losses that you’ve suffered in the accident. In car accident settlement cases, damages could include:
- Current and future medical expenses. This includes doctor bills, hospital costs, physical therapy and other rehabilitation, drug costs, and the cost of medical devices and equipment.
- Lost wages. Lost wages are the days you missed from work while recuperating from your injuries.
- Lost earning capacity. If you can’t work anymore because of injuries, or your ability to work is reduced, you can pursue these damages.
- Property damage. Reimbursement for damage or loss of your vehicle or other property.
- Pain and suffering. Pain and suffering damages include compensation for chronic physical pain, scarring or other disfigurement, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, depression and more.
- Punitive damages. In cases of especially bad negligence, you may be able to ask for punitive damages, which are meant to punish wrongdoers.
An attorney will advise you how much you might get from a car accident settlement after they understand the damages involved.
WHAT TO DO AND NOT DO AFTER A CAR ACCIDENT TO IMPROVE YOUR CHANCES OF A HIGHER SETTLEMENT
To help your claim and improve your chances of getting higher compensation in a car accident settlement, there are some things to do and not do following a crash.
- Get medical attention—even if you don’t feel you were hurt, injuries can show up later.
- Get contact information for any eyewitnesses to the crash.
- Get a copy of the police report.
- Keep a daily record of how the injuries you sustained have affected your life.
- Admit fault—let the investigators discover the facts.
- Speculate to others at the scene about how the crash happened.
- Speak to the other driver’s insurance company—whatever you say to them may be used against you later.
Get the Help of a Skilled Car Accident Attorney
Unless you have been unlucky enough to have been in an accident before, you probably are not familiar with the insurance claims process. A skilled car accident attorney can improve your chances of getting a higher settlement amount because they know how to value accident cases and how to negotiate with big insurance companies. Car accident lawyers also know the law and will stand up for you in court if a fair settlement agreement can’t be reached before trial.
CONTACT A WEST TEXAS CAR ACCIDENT LAWYER TO LEARN WHAT YOUR SETTLEMENT MAY BE WORTH
If another party caused your serious injury accident through their negligent actions, you shouldn’t have to pay the financial price in addition to the physical one. An experienced West Texas car accident lawyer at Hanna Allen, PLLC will fight for your right to compensation. Once we learn the details of your case, we can counsel you about your options and advise you about how much your car accident settlement may be worth. Call us today at 432-220-2649 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with our compassionate attorneys.