How Is Car Accident Compensation Calculated?
Car accident compensation is calculated based on the unique circumstances of the collision.
To calculate a rough estimate of how much you may be owed after a car accident, you will need to consider the following factors:
- Determine the Value of Your Vehicle: Research the Kelley Blue Book value of your car or get an estimate from a local auto body shop.
- Calculate the Cost of Repairs: Research the cost of necessary repairs or get an estimate from a local auto body shop.
- Factor in Lost Wages: Calculate any wages you may have lost due to your injuries.
- Determine Medical Expenses: Gather medical bills, out-of-pocket medical receipts, medication receipts, and future medical procedure costs to accurately determine how much you spent on medical care and costs over several months.
Once you have all of this information, you can begin to calculate a rough estimate of how much you may be owed. However, it is important to remember that this is only a rough estimate, and the actual amount you are owed may be different. If you need assistance in calculating your claim, please contact an Arkansas car accident attorney for help.
What Factors Affect Car Accident Compensation?
1. Injury Severity
The severity of injuries sustained in a car accident can have a major impact on how much car accident compensation is awarded to the victims. Injury severity is often taken into account when calculating an offer for pain and suffering.
In Texas, serious injuries include those that cause a substantial disability that lasts for more than 90 days, bone fracture, significant disfigurement, or permanent organ damage or disability. When it comes to property damage, if the vehicle is deemed a total loss rather than just a small dent or two, the insurance company is likely to take the claim more seriously.
Data on average car accident compensation amount varies by source. The Insurance Information Institute reports the average claim for bodily injury after a collision was $20,235 in 2020, while the average property damage claim was $4,711. However, a Martindale-Nolo survey of readers who made car accident claims between 2015 and 2020 reported an average settlement of $23,900. Most received less than $10,000.
In addition, the victims may be eligible for noneconomic damages such as pain and suffering, which are hard to quantify and often require expert witnesses to establish the extent of harm. Ultimately, having an attorney who understands the true value of a claim can be invaluable in getting the maximum amount of compensation for the injuries sustained.
2. Type of Accident
The main difference between accidents of the same type is the type of car accident compensation that is awarded after the accident. General damages refer to non-economic losses, such as physical pain and suffering or mental anguish, that naturally arise due to the wrongful actions of the defendant. These damages are often assigned an exact dollar amount based on the severity of the injury and the sensitivities of the injury.
On the other hand, special or economic damages are awarded to financially compensate the injured party for any losses suffered because of the actions of the defendant. These types of damages refer to out-of-pocket expenses and can be established by summing up all the quantifiable financial losses suffered by the plaintiff.
3. Parties’ Insurance Coverage
Insurance coverage plays an important role when it comes to car accidents and seeking compensation for the damages incurred. In cases involving two or more parties, the amount of coverage can have a direct effect on the car accident compensation awarded. In cases involving one party, filing a first-party claim with their insurance company is the only option for reimbursement. For instance, collision coverage covers the cost of damage to a vehicle, while medical payments coverage takes care of medical bills up to the limit of the policy.
In cases involving two or more parties, it is important to determine the amount of insurance coverage each party has, as this will determine the potential for a successful claim. If the other driver is uninsured, the chances of collecting any money from the accident become slim.
An added benefit of no-fault insurance is that medical treatment for injuries can be authorized immediately regardless of who is at fault. However, all drivers should be aware of the amount of insurance coverage they have, as well as any additional riders or reduced coverage for medical bills only.
It is also important to consider who is responsible for paying when another driver borrows and crashes your car. In such a situation, the owner of the vehicle is legally protected under Florida law and it is essential to seek legal assistance to ensure protection.
Overall, insurance coverage plays a key role in car accident compensation, and it is important for all drivers to be aware of their own policy coverage as well as the coverage of other parties involved in an accident.
4. Liability Law
Liability law is essential for determining who is at fault for car accidents, as this affects the compensation that victims can receive. If a driver is found to be negligent, then they can be held liable for the damages caused in the accident. In some cases, other parties, such as vehicle manufacturers or businesses that served alcohol, can be liable for the accident.
In Texas, the modified comparative fault rule is used to determine the amount of compensation awarded. If the plaintiff is found to be more than 50% at fault, then they are barred from receiving any damages. If the plaintiff is found to be partially at fault, then their damages are reduced by their percentage of fault.
Most drivers are required to have liability insurance, which pays out the car accident compensation up to policy limits. If the damages exceed the policy limits, then the victim may pursue a claim against the at-fault driver directly for losses not covered by insurance. However, the at-fault driver may not have enough assets to pay the additional damages even if the court were to award them. Claims against the government also present many unique challenges, as they are subject to a much shorter statute of limitations.
5. Injury Type
The type of injury sustained in a car accident can have a significant impact on the amount of compensation that a victim can seek. In Texas, serious injuries such as substantial disability, bone fractures, disfigurement, and permanent organ damage or disability can entitle the victim to pursue a lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
Victims who have opted out of the no-fault system may also be able to seek compensation for medical expenses, wage loss, pain and suffering, modifications to their home or vehicle, lost earning potential, and emotional distress. In addition, damages can be sought for vehicle or property damage resulting from the accident.
The amount of compensation that a victim is entitled to can also depend on the severity of the vehicle damage sustained in the accident. If the vehicle is only slightly damaged, the insurance company may offer a settlement that does not take into account the full extent of the victim’s economic losses or the pain and suffering that the individual has endured. However, if the vehicle is deemed a total loss or has suffered significant damage, this can signal to the insurance company that the victim’s injuries were serious and that a larger settlement is necessary.
Finally, it is important for victims to follow their doctor’s orders and receive medical attention as soon as possible to provide evidence that their injuries are real and serious. This can help them to pursue the maximum amount of compensation they are entitled to.
6. Medical Bills
The cause of car accidents can range from driver error to environmental conditions, but one thing is certain: medical bills are a common result. Medical bills related to car accidents can include doctor visits, treatment costs, tests, hospitalization, prescription medications, physical therapy, rehabilitation, ambulance fees, in-home services, permanent disability, and other expenses. Depending on the severity of the accident, these medical bills can quickly accumulate to tens of thousands of dollars.
As a result of these medical expenses, accident victims may file a car accident claim to recoup some of their losses. If the accident was caused by another person’s negligence, they can pursue a personal injury claim to seek compensation for their damages. Under the no-fault system, medical bills can be authorized immediately regardless of who is at fault. However, if the claim exceeds the insurance coverage, additional damages may be sought from the negligent party.
In the event that the driver of your car was borrowed and crashed it, the driver’s insurance coverage is usually the primary policy that pays for the damages. The driver and the owner of the vehicle (you) may be held responsible for the damages, depending on the state laws. In this case, it is important to contact a car accident attorney as soon as possible after the crash to make sure you get the car accident compensation you deserve.
7. Need for Treatment
The need for treatment is a key factor affecting car accident compensation. Whether you are dealing with your own insurance company or the at-fault driver’s insurer, seeking and following medical attention in the hours, days, and weeks after an accident can provide evidence to support an injury claim.
On the other hand, if an adjuster perceives that the injury is exaggerated or faked, they may deny the claim. It is thus essential to seek medical attention as soon as possible after an accident in order to prove the seriousness of your injuries and help protect your right to fair compensation.
Additionally, it is important to follow your doctor’s orders precisely to avoid any risk of risking your settlement by overexerting yourself. An experienced attorney can help you get the car accident compensation you need by understanding the medical and legal aspects of your claim.
8. Injury Duration
The duration of an injury sustained in a car accident can have a significant effect on the amount of compensation that a person can receive. In Texas, serious injuries that last for more than 90 days, involve a bone fracture, cause significant disfigurement, or result in permanent disability such as organ damage or limited use of a body part are eligible for compensation. Property damage caused by the accident may also be subject to compensation.
It is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible after a car accident to ensure that there is an accurate record of your injuries, as well as to reduce the risk of malingering. If the injury is severe enough to cause disfigurement, temporary or permanent disability, or a bone fracture, you may be able to pursue a car accident lawsuit. However, you must act quickly, as there is a time limit for filing a lawsuit, known as the statute of limitations, which is usually three years from the date of the accident.
Pain and suffering is also subject to compensation, but the amount is determined by the severity of the case. Insurance companies will often calculate an offer by multiplying the medical and property damage bills by a number between 1.5 and four.
Finally, it is important to understand that you only have a limited time to move your claim forward and that you may have to take legal action within a certain time limit. In Texas, the statute of limitations is usually two years from the date of the accident, but this can vary. Therefore, if you are seeking compensation for a car accident, it is important to act quickly and seek legal advice as soon as possible.
9. Severity of Pain
The severity of pain experienced due to a car accident can have a major impact on the compensation an individual may receive. The more severe the pain, the more likely it is that the individual can successfully pursue non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, in addition to economic damages such as medical bills and lost wages.
When pursuing a car accident claim, a skilled attorney can present a convincing case for a higher award based on the severity of the pain experienced. InTexas, the law defines a serious injury as substantial disability that lasts for more than 90 days, a bone fracture, or significant disfigurement.
These criteria, along with an analysis of how the injury has affected the victim, can be used to calculate the total amount of compensation. Furthermore, the more severe the injury, the greater the value of the claim, as it will involve a greater amount of medical bills, property damage, and lost wages that can be recovered.
For this reason, it is important for individuals who have been injured in a car accident to seek the assistance of an experienced attorney to ensure that they receive the full amount of compensation they deserve.
10. Career Impacts
One of the effects of a car accident is the potential for lost wages and career advancement opportunities. Victims of a car accident may be unable to work due to physical injuries and this can greatly impact their ability to earn income.
Furthermore, when making a car accident claim, individuals may be able to collect for loss of earning capacity if their injuries prevent them from making future wages as they did before. To prove lost wages damages, individuals will need to provide pay stubs from recent past paycheck as well as evidence of any missed opportunities in order to receive adequate compensation.
A car accident lawyer can help individuals with this process. It is important for those who have been involved in a car accident to act quickly to protect their rights, as time is of the essence and seeking medical attention can help to support an injury claim. Additionally, it is important to follow all of the doctor’s orders to ensure that the claim is not denied due to suspicion of malingering.
Get a Free Case Consultation
Before you negotiate or sign anything, learn your rights and how to protect yourself and your family. A personal injury lawyer can talk to you about your legal options, how to avoid common mistakes, and how to maximize your claim.