National Car Crash Settlement Amounts In The United States
If you’ve been in a car accident and suffered injuries, you’d be relieved to hear that you’re likely entitled to compensation. In the US, the average settlement amount for serious car crash accidents is approximately $41,783, according to Brown &Crouppen. In the case of minor injuries, the amount is much lower, between $10,000-15,000. And even in those cases, a car accident attorney can help you get the maximum amount in settlement.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, deaths from traffic crashes with collective medical and lost wages come to a whopping $55 billion per year! If that wasn’t enough, there’s data that suggests people with car crash lawyers get 3.5 times more compensation than those without a lawyer.
Additional car accident settlement values
Note that these averages don’t necessarily represent the standard settlement amount for every case. The circumstances surrounding each incident are unique as much as the characteristics of the vehicles involved. Be it a motorcycle, truck, or car accident claim. In conclusion, we can say that settlement amounts depend on many factors, among which the extent of injuries suffered plays the most prominent determining role.
- Average car accident settlement: $41,783.00
- Average truck accident settlement: $42,909.88
- Average motorcycle accident settlement: $67,564.31
What are the factors that determine the car accident settlement amounts?
While some factors may vary from state to state, most of the ones mentioned here are standard.
- Insurance policy coverage
In states such as Illinois, Kansas, and Missouri, the insurance coverage requirement is $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident. Most states also require coverage for uninsured motorists if an accident does happen with someone who’s not insured. Here also, the amounts are $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident. The insurance policy of the driver and the insurance providers have a massive influence on how car accident settlements are processed.
In most states, drivers are required to possess liability insurance as compensation is paid to victims when the policyholder is at fault. The victim may recover costs incurred in medical bills, injuries and property damage that were a result of the car accident. If the fault cannot be determined, getting a settlement becomes significantly more challenging, and as a result, both parties may have to compromise or take the case to trial.
- Severity of injuries
The severity of injuries is the biggest factor that determines the payout of a car crash settlement case. Obviously, a crash that caused serious injuries is likely to be higher stakes with bigger settlement amounts in comparison to a case that involves moderate to minor injuries. This is because serious, life-threatening injuries have adverse effects on the victim, leading to lost wages, loss of lifestyle, and continued medical needs.
A person might even have to spend up to $57,000 in medical expenses if hospitalization is required. So, you can understand why it’s essential to obtain the proper medical care and save the medical bills proactively.
- Financial loss
Financial loss is another major factor that determines how much a car crash settlement is worth. Financial loss includes medical expenses to treat injuries, damage to property, pain and suffering, and lost wages that might occur from missing work due to injuries. The scope of what is considered to be a ‘financial loss’ is extensive, and it’s best that you let your attorney do the assessment.
- State laws
Each state has unique laws about traffic, insurance coverage, and governing policies that address how car accident claims are to be treated based on which party is at fault and to what extent. If you have an attorney, they’ll be able to clarify which state laws will affect your claim and the necessary steps to take concerning getting a settlement or filing a lawsuit. You should only hire a lawyer that belongs to your state and is well-versed in local laws.
How are car accident settlements calculated?
Regardless of how much your claim is worth, the amount you’re likely to receive at most depends on the insurance provider and the at-fault party’s insurance coverage. The common factors that are used to calculate car crash settlements include, but are not limited to:
- Severity of injury
- Pain and suffering
- Current and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Fault and negligence
If your injury has happened due to the negligence of an uninsured individual, they may not have the means to pay for damages. In that case, you’re out of luck. However, if the at-fault person is insured, then you can only recover in settlement the amount that’s set by their insurance policy. The limit of every person’s insurance policy depends on how much coverage they can afford.
What if there’s no settlement offered?
The chances of that happening are very slim as settlements happen to be the most common outcome in car crash injury cases. That’s because insurance companies don’t want to go through the ordeal of a lawsuit, where they will have to spend more for a not-so-guaranteed outcome. According to a Martindale-Nolo survey, it was found that 98% of car crash victims recovered their compensation through an out-of-court settlement rather than a lawsuit.
Car accident settlements also don’t take much time to conclude, whereas a lawsuit could drag on for months. Your personal injury attorney will only think about initiating a lawsuit when all negotiations fail, and going to court remains the only way to get you justice. With a good lawyer by your side, you can be confident of fair representation and an honest verdict from the jury.