How Much Should I Receive From My Car Accident?
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The worst-case scenario of your case’s value is always zero. The best-case scenario is an educated estimate based on the severity of the crash, your injuries, medical expenses, prognosis, your occupation, and your lifestyle. These factors also drive up the amount of your ‘pain and suffering’ and inconvenience damages.
Severity of the Crash
The higher the rate of speed at which the vehicles were traveling and the crash impact, the greater the damages are likely to be. But this is not always the case.
In every case, the first hurdle a victim must clear is the allocation of fault among parties. Regardless of the seriousness of the car accident, the victim must establish that another party was at fault before recovering any compensation.
Car accident attorneys gather evidence in injury claims and sometimes work with an accident reconstructionist or an engineer to describe the speed, force, angle, and impact of the collision and prove fault.
The amount of compensation a car accident victim receives will many times be proportionate to the amount of medical bills incurred. You may also need future therapy or other medical intervention to reach maximum medical improvement. These future expenses are part of your case value.
Even with documented medical expenses, however, insurance companies will work hard to erode your claim. One way they do this is by arguing that you suffer from a prior injury or pre-existing condition.
Insurance companies may also argue that the treatment you received was unnecessary under the circumstances or that you did not follow your doctor’s orders, making your situation avoidably worse.
Car accident attorneys sometimes rely on physicians to testify as to a client’s long-term outlook. Among the information a medical expert can provide is how long the victim will need treatment, the odds of the victim making a full and complete recovery, the likelihood of the injuries being permanent, and reasonably foreseeable future treatment.
Type of Work or Career
Car accident victims typically suffer wage loss from being under medical care. The amount of wage loss depends on the person’s occupation and nature of their employment.
An accident with incapacitating injuries may force a victim to work fewer hours, find a different line of work, or prevent the victim from working altogether. The loss of this income is part of what a victim should recover from the car accident case.
‘Pain and Suffering’ and Inconvenience
Victims should receive compensation for the physical pain or discomfort and the mental anguish they have to live with.
Due to their noneconomic nature and the absence of a court-recognized formula to calculate them, ‘pain and suffering’ and inconvenience damages are a big unknown in car accident cases.
Regardless of the approach used in the victim’s settlement demand, an insurance company will try to whittle it down. Because of the subjective nature of these damages and wide range of possibilities, this is an area where you really need a strong attorney.
Sometimes a car accident involves factors for which the court allows an award of punitive damages. The intent of punitive damages is to punish the offender where severe aggravating factors such as drug or alcohol abuse or road rage were involved.
Prosecuting a case incurs expenses. Even if you do not pay these upfront, you can plan to deduct something for case expenses from your case’s value. Expenses might include medical records costs, expert witness fees, court reporter fees, filing fees, and other expenses. Be sure to discuss these with your lawyer ahead of time, as what legal fees you can anticipate.
Talk to a Car Accident Attorney to Learn How Much You Can Receive from Your Car Accident
Pursuing a lawsuit can impose an emotional toll and can carry financial risks. Do not enter into a civil lawsuit without having an idea about what your bottom line looks like.
The Parrish Law Firm, PLLC helps car accident victims make the right call in handling their cases. We will provide an upfront analysis of your car accident case during a no-cost consultation with you and discuss how much you could receive from your car accident. To schedule a free consultation, call 571-229-1800.