Car Accident Injury Claims – What Is their Value?

In Criminal Defense Law in Spokane WA by Jeremy Friedland

When a person is injured in a car accident that is not their fault, compensation for their losses and expenses are normally paid by the insurance company of the at fault driver. Car accident lawyers are experienced in determining the value of injuries and can help accident victims present valid injury claim amounts to reach a settlement. When insurance companies disagree about claim amounts, injury cases can end up in court. Therefore, an injured party should work with an experienced auto accident lawyer who knows how to best represent injured clients and seek the best settlement possible.

Filing Car Accident Injury Claims

After suffering injuries in an automobile accident, injured victims may face high medical bills, loss of income, and potentially lengthy, ongoing or permanent care or assistance as a result. Initially contacting experienced car accident lawyers prior to talking with the other driver’s insurance company is recommended, as preparing documentation to seek a fair claim settlement begins immediately. When an injured person contacts an insurance company before understanding the true extent of financial damages, they may be offered an early settlement. Even if the offered amount seems adequate, accident victims should discuss any offer with an attorney before accepting any settlement.

Determining Injury Claim Value

Putting a dollar amount on an injury claim requires research and consideration of many factors above and beyond medical bill amounts. There are formulas used by both car accident lawyers and insurance companies to determine a ballpark figure for injury claims that is then tailored to each injured person. In addition, each calculation is subject to its own specifics to arrive at a reasonable amount. These factors include age, health and existing medical problems, type of employment and salary, and many other personal details including how lasting effects of sustained injuries will affect an injured party in the future.

It should also be noted that the comparative responsibility of an injured party varies by state and settlement amounts may have to be adjusted to reflect this aspect. Based on an established claim amount, responsibility is assigned a percentage that is subtracted from the claim amount as applicable by individual state laws.

What Is Included With Injury Claims?

An injury claim is based on:  type and extent of sustained injuries; current and estimated future medical expenses; rehabilitation expenses; past and future medical assistance; and ongoing or permanent care. These amounts are challenging to estimate, as the duration of an injury and the estimated cost of care must be calculated. Additionally, loss of income and earning potential is another part of the injury settlement equation, as is the loss of any pension or benefits, expenses for any activities of daily living and/or home health care, and other associated expenses.

Pain and suffering, loss of companionship, emotional distress, and anxiety and depression are also considered as a part of injury claims. Any family hardships suffered because of an injured loved ones, such as financial or emotional distress, may also be included.

Calculating a fair settlement for compensation after sustaining injuries in a car accident is much more involved than is often realized. Things other than medical expenses and loss of income are used by car accident attorneys to determine the value of an injury claim. Because dealing with insurance companies can be challenging, a person who has been injured in a motor vehicle accident should work with experienced car accident lawyers before beginning any type of negotiations regarding an car accident claim!

Maurer Law

505 West Riversite Suite 400

Spokane WA 99201

(509) 319-2209

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