If you suffered harm in a car crash, you probably want to know how much money you can recover from a car accident settlement. Yet, while many of these settlements can range in the thousands and even hundreds of thousands of dollars, it is tough to figure out what an average car accident settlement amount can be.
You need to remember that every car accident is different, with its own unique circumstances. As a result, numerous factors can impact how much money a car accident victim can obtain. To better help you understand these factors and how they can affect a car accident settlement, we have prepared this blog.
In it, we will go over these different factors and discuss how you can improve your chances of getting the maximum money you need after a car accident. We will also review how an experienced car accident attorney in Florida can help you fight for the financial recovery and justice you deserve.
Information To Know About Car Accident Settlements
A settlement refers to an agreement that ends a dispute without having to go to trial. Following a car accident, the settlement process usually happens between the liable party and the victim, or the victim and the insurance company. Both parties tend to reach the settlement process before a trial has commenced or once the trial process has started.
Yet, while the settlement process may seem relatively straightforward, it can be quite challenging for parties to agree to a fair amount that suits both of their needs. For these reasons, following a car crash, you should consider speaking to an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible. These lawyers can handle this settlement process for you, ensuring you do not do or say anything that can impact your case and assist you as you fight for the maximum financial recovery you deserve.
A Review of the Car Accident Settlement Process in Florida
After a Florida car crash, the car accident settlement process begins with the victim sending a demand letter to their insurance company. This is because Florida is a no-fault car insurance state, which means that car accident victims will first turn to their own coverage to obtain lost income or get money for their injuries.
This demand letter will usually lay out details about the car crash, information about the damages that resulted from it, who was responsible for the incident, and a settlement demand, which will detail the settlement amount needed and a deadline by which the insurance company needs to meet these expectations.
Once the insurance company receives this letter, it will investigate the accident and determine whether it will accept or deny these demands. If the insurer agrees with the claim, they can make a settlement offer and begin settlement negotiations. If the insurer denies the claim with their reasoning, the victim must appeal the decision.
If the parties enter settlement negotiations, both sides will present their arguments until there is a resolution to the conflict. However, if the parties cannot reach a settlement agreement, the victim and their attorney may decide to take their case to trial, where they will try to fight for all the compensation they deserve.
Factors That Can Influence Settlement Negotiations in Florida
Numerous factors go into determining how much a car accident victim can obtain in a car accident settlement, including the seriousness of the harm that resulted and the effects of these injuries on the person’s life.
In addition to these two important factors, the following elements may affect the settlement offer’s amount:
- Whether the victim can work after the accident and the amount of their lost income
- The type of medical treatments required and the length of these treatments
- Whether the victim needs additional care that they did not need before the accident
- Whether the injuries resulted in permanent limitations
- The type of evidence presented and the credibility of the evidence
- The number of at-fault parties responsible for the accident
- The victim’s patience regarding their willingness to wait to settle for a fair amount
Additionally, in Florida, drivers must have at least $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) coverage through their automobile insurance. Consequently, this coverage can play a significant role in a person’s payout following a car crash, especially since numerous limits exist to these PIP claims and what victims of a car accident can recover. For instance, these individuals cannot obtain compensation for pain, suffering, and other non-monetary damages when pursuing a PIP claim. The victim can only recover these costs by filing a third-party claim against the at-fault driver.
As a result, if you want to figure out which factors can impact your ability to secure all the money you need after a car accident, consider speaking with an experienced Florida motor vehicle accident attorney. These lawyers can help you better understand what can impact your case while also assisting you in preparing the strongest legal case on your behalf.
Should You Accept the First Settlement Offer You Receive?
Although receiving a settlement offer after a car crash may seem like great news, accepting this amount may not be in your best interest, as it is probably not the most money you can get.
After a Florida car accident, the insurance company may offer you a settlement amount to cover your losses. However, you must remember that the insurance company and their representatives are trained professionals who resolve claims for as little money as possible.
This is because the less the insurance company pays, the more money they make. For these reasons, it is not uncommon for insurers to offer a meager settlement amount shortly after an accident. They hope they can resolve your claim without you realizing the full extent of your injuries or confirming with a legal professional whether you can go after more money. Yet, if you accept this amount, you cannot return to the insurance company later and ask for additional funds.
Consequently, before you accept any offer from the insurance company, you should consider speaking with a knowledgeable Florida car accident attorney. These lawyers can not only determine the total extent of your losses, but they can also figure out whether the settlement offer covers your current costs and future expenses. If it does not, they can return to the insurer and try to fight for more money on your behalf.
Actions You Can Take to Help the Settlement Process
After a car crash, thinking about taking action is probably the last thing you want to worry about. However, taking specific steps after these accidents can ensure you get the treatment you require, protect your legal rights, and help you go after the settlement amount you deserve.
That is why after a car accident:
Reach out to the Authorities
Following a motor vehicle accident, the best way to notify the authorities about the accident and get the police to the scene is to call 911 immediately. Once you get the medical treatment you require, the police officers can also investigate the crash and write their observations in their police report. This report can provide you and your attorney with valuable details regarding the accident that can help during settlement negotiations.
Get to a Doctor
Even if your injuries appear relatively minor, you should still get to a doctor and get examined. Depending on the circumstances, certain serious injuries, such as traumatic brain injury or spinal cord damage, take some time to manifest. You may not even know you sustained these debilitating injuries until days after the accident. However, failing to get these conditions treated right away can lead to catastrophic repercussions.
Additionally, once you get examined by a doctor, these medical professionals can write down information regarding your injuries, their severity, and what caused them in your medical report. Providing you and your lawyer with evidence of the extent of your trauma and a connection between the harm you suffered and the car accident, which you can use to help you negotiate for the money you need.
Reach out to an Experienced Car Accident Attorney
After a motor vehicle accident, gathering evidence and talking to witnesses is not always feasible. Fortunately, when you contact an experienced car accident attorney after a motor vehicle collision, you will not have to worry about obtaining this evidence alone. Instead, when you work with these attorneys, they can secure this evidence for you, which can help you go after a settlement that works for you and the losses you endured.
For instance, these lawyers can try to obtain photographs of the vehicles involved in the crash, the damage to these vehicles, your visible injuries, the placement of these vehicles on the road, traffic signs and signals near the area, the weather conditions, road defects, and anything else that can show what happened. They can also speak to witnesses who can provide testimony to help corroborate your claim.
Heading to Trial if Settlement Negotiations Go South
Depending on the circumstances of the car accident, your attorney may decide that heading to trial can help you get the compensation you deserve. This is because pursuing litigation means you can go after a variety of damages that were not possible before, including:
These damages refer to compensation for the verifiable losses that result after an accident, including payment for:
- Medical bills resulting from doctor visits, prescription medications, assistive medical devices, hospital stays, and other types of treatments
- Personal property repair or replacement expenses
- Future medical expenses
- Physical therapy
- Lost income and lost business opportunities
- Child care expenses
These damages refer to payment for injuries that are more personal than other out-of-pocket expenses.
They include damages related to:
- Pain and suffering
- Physical impairment
- Mental anguish
- Loss of consortium
In addition to the above compensatory damages, you may also be able to pursue punitive damages. However, unlike the other damages, designed to compensate victims for the losses they sustained, the court only awards punitive damages to punish the wrongful party for their gross negligence or intentional misconduct and deter others from committing these acts.
Work With an Experienced Motor Vehicle Accident Attorney and Fight for the Compensation You Need
Going after the compensation you need after a motor vehicle accident can be complicated. Not only are there countless factors that can impact your settlement offer, but you will likely also be dealing with insurance representatives trying to do everything to get you less money than you are entitled to.
However, when you work with a knowledgeable car accident attorney, you will not have to deal with this process alone. Instead, once hired, these attorneys can go over your accident with you in detail, determine your legal options, and review your questions and concerns.
They can also:
- Thoroughly investigate the incident and gather the evidence required to show the extent of your damages and what happened.
- Hire experts to substantiate your claim, such as medical doctors, accident reconstructionists, financial specialists, etc.
- Handle the settlement negotiations with the other parties and go after an offer that is fair to you.
- If needed, take your case to trial and fight for maximum damages.
If a car accident caused you significant injuries and you want to know how much money you can get from a car accident settlement, contact an experienced motor vehicle accident attorney as soon as possible for your free case evaluation. Learn how a car accident lawyer can pursue the money you deserve.
Hire Dolman Law Group To Get You the Most Money Possible
When it comes time to choose an attorney, we hope you will consider the Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA. We pride ourselves on being well-versed with respect to car accident law and are specialists in Florida law. We handle motor vehicle collisions as well as all other types of personal injury claims. We encourage all our potential clients to do their research. Check out our Google reviews, our ranking on Avvo.com and Superlawyers.com, and verify our background on the Florida Bar's website. We have built our entire business on reputation and word-of-mouth. Unlike many other law firms, we do not rely on big-budget TV advertising or pay-for-clients referral services to keep unaware clients rolling in. Instead, we trust that our former clients will recommend us through online reviews, by telling their friends, and by supporting us on social media. It's not always easy, but that's how an honest business operates, and we like it that way.
We also pride ourselves on providing the best results possible for our clients and have consistently successfully won numerous million and multi-million dollar settlements on behalf of our clients. Those who have been involved in an auto wreck and want to ensure that they receive the maximum compensation to which they are legally entitled to stand to benefit substantially by working with an experienced personal injury lawyer at Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA.
If you or someone you love has been injured due to someone else's negligence, don't settle for anything less than you deserve. At Dolman Law Group, one of our experienced personal injury lawyers will sit down with you, go over your case including case specifics depending on the type of claim, and answer any questions you may have during a free consultation. Don't hesitate to make that first step towards financial recovery today. Call us at (866) 722-7212.