How Much to Expect from a Car Accident Settlement?
Being involved in a car accident can affect nearly every aspect of your life. Depending on the severity of the injury, you may be left with significant medical bills. In some instances, these medical bills may climb as you continue to undergo treatment through your recovery. During this time, you may also face the financial stress of not being able to work. The longer you are out of work, the more difficult it becomes to pay your bills and other financial obligations. If another person was found to be responsible for the car accident, you may be owed a settlement to cover these expenses.
Where Do Auto Accident Settlements Come From?
The person who is responsible for causing the car accident is typically responsible for paying any damages that occur from the collision. Most of the time, the responsible party’s insurance will cover the cost of the damages. However, if you were found to be responsible or if there is no responsible party found, you may seek recovery elsewhere. If you have medical payment coverage included in your insurance (“med pay” coverage), your insurance company will pay the medical bills of the driver and passengers injured up to the policy limits.
What Type of Settlement Can I Expect from a Car Accident?
The amount you receive from your car accident settlement can greatly range depending on a variety of factors. When determining how much you will receive, your attorney will take the type of injury and the severity of the injury into consideration. He or she will also consider your treatment plan, loss of income, and length of therapy. Many times, a settlement is only provided when all of the medical treatments have been completed. If your injury is permanent, it will greatly influence the amount of compensation that you receive.
It is important to understand that there is no single formula for calculating a car accident settlement. In some instances, only your vehicle will sustain damage and you will only receive reimbursement for property damage based on the limits of your insurance policy. However, when an injury does occur you may be reimbursed for medical bills, loss of income, and pain and suffering.
To ensure that you are fairly compensated for your injuries, it is important to undergo an examination by a doctor following a car accident. Some types of car accident injuries, such as whiplash, may not become evident for several days following the collision. If you wait too long to receive medical care or have already negotiated a settlement with the insurance company, you may not receive the compensation that you fairly deserve for your injuries. As your compensation is based on a variety of factors, it is best to undergo a full examination directly after your accident, whether you believe you have suffered an injury or not.
What Else Should I Know About Car Accident Settlements?
In some instances, you may not receive the compensation that you would expect. If you choose to file a personal injury claim with the other driver’s insurance company, know that you are limited by the maximum on their policy. For example, if you have sustained $30,000 in damage but their insurance policy has a maximum limit of $25,000, you may need to sue the responsible party directly to reclaim the other $5,000 owed to you. If you have underinsured motorist coverage on your own insurance policy, you may be able to reclaim this money that way.
You will also want to ensure that you meet the statute of limitations for your car accident injuries in the state in which you reside. You typically have two years from the car accident date to file a personal injury claim. Note that there are some exceptions to this statute of limitations. For example, minors are able to file a lawsuit at any point before their 18th birthday. While you always have the option to go through the insurance company to collect your settlement, know that most insurance companies will try to lowball you. Working with an experienced lawyer is your best bet to getting the compensation that you deserve.
With the help of an expert personal injury lawyer, there are things you can do to help ensure that you receive fair compensation. First, you’ll want to have a complete investigation conducted, which means collecting any witness statements, medical reports, police reports, and any other important documentation relating to the car accident. Next, you’ll want to avoid releasing your medical records to the other driver’s insurance company. However, you will want to regularly update the adjuster about the severity of your injuries. You also do not want to let the adjuster persuade you into settling your case fast, as this will often lead to a lowball settlement.
When Should I Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer?
If you or a loved one has been involved in a vehicle accident that caused an injury, you will want to contact a personal injury lawyer right away. Working alongside an Atlanta auto accident lawyer can help ensure that you receive reasonable compensation based on the amount of car repairs and medical repairs that you have paid, as well as possible pain and suffering. For more information, contact The Dixon Firm today.