The amount of money you recover from a car accident case depends on many factors: the severity of your injuries and material damages, the strength of your evidence in a claim or lawsuit, your attorneys’ skills in negotiating a settlement, and more. It can also depend on where the accident occurred. For example, you can recover more from an accident in a rural area than in a densely populated urban area. Your type of injuries affect the amount you get back, and so do the laws in your state. But let’s take one thing at a time!
Factors that Determine How Much You Recover From a Car Accident Case
1. Your Proof’s Strength
In a car accident case, you need to prove that the other driver was responsible for your injuries. You must also show the number, type, and severity of your wounds.
The more severe your injuries are, the more money you can recover in a car accident case settlement. For example, if you have severe injuries or if you are going to need a long time off work because of your injuries, then you could get a larger settlement. However, suppose your injuries are relatively minor. In that case, the defendant’s insurance company may only offer a small amount of money back to pay for medical bills and lost wages from work. Suppose you need physical therapy, special facilities at home (to help you move around the house in a wheelchair), or psychotherapy for mental anguish. In that case, your attorney will ensure the liable party reimburses you for all these troubles.
According to a car accident lawyer in Altoona, to strengthen your case, you should gather as much evidence as possible to prove that the defendant is responsible for your damages. The more substantial the proof in your case, the more likely you will get a large compensation settlement for medical bills, pain and suffering, loss of pay, and other damages.
2. The Defendant’s Insurance Company
If a defendant’s insurance company offers a quick settlement, you may decide to accept it. However, if you do take the first offer, you won’t be able to revisit the issue in the future, file a new claim, or initiate a lawsuit. Some injuries will manifest later, so the first low-ball offer might not cover all your future healthcare expenses, loss of enjoyment of daily activities, ability to make a living, etc. In a quick settlement, the amount of money is probably very small. Therefore, you may better wait to see what the insurance company offers, hire an attorney, and let them begin settlement negotiations.
3. The Laws in Your State
Many states have laws regarding how much someone can recover from a car accident case. For example, California has a law that caps how much pain and suffering damages someone can receive from being injured in an accident in a private vehicle. However, other states don’t put a cap on how much someone can recover. Nevertheless, some laws limit the amount someone can recover for an injury to 2/3 of their income from all sources.
4. The Defendant’s Intoxication
If the defendant was intoxicated while causing the accident, you could get a more considerable damage amount back in a car accident settlement. However, alcohol consumption is only one of several factors that you have to look at when determining how much money you can recover from a car accident case. If a drunk driver caused you injuries and material damages, you could initiate a civil action parallel to the possible criminal action taken against the defendant. Consult with your attorney about this. Sometimes, the evidence in a criminal case (the police report) can also be used later in a civil one, but it depends on the courts.
5. How Much Income You Lose
Suppose you are injured in a car accident and cannot work because of your injuries. You could get a larger settlement back from the defendant if you no longer have your regular income or if the accident caused a temporary or permanent disability. If you are injured, and your spouse is the one who lost their income as a result, then they could get some damages, although it is not guaranteed. Car accident laws vary by state, but your attorney might be able to negotiate a satisfactory award in court.
6. Your Need for Future Medical Care
If you need future medical care and if the other driver caused your injuries, you should hire an experienced car accident lawyer in your area to help get a large settlement for you. The cost of future medical treatment is a significant factor that car accident lawyers consider when determining how much money someone can recover from a car accident case.
The amount you can recover from a car accident case depends on where the accident occurred, how severe your injuries are, and what long-life consequences you will suffer. Witnesses are also crucial to your case because they can provide evidence that supports your claim that the other driver was at fault. A lawyer with experience in car accident cases will be able to help you get fair compensation for your suffering and future medical care needs.