Recovering from a car accident can take years. While the incident itself may last only a few moments, the resulting fallout can impact accident victims for the rest of their lives. This is especially true of those who suffer back injuries in the collision. Cars can be repaired and replaced, but back and spinal cord injuries can forever change the way a person lives their life.
If you’ve been hurt in such an incident, you may have questions about the value of your settlement. With medical bills piling up by the day, it’s natural to feel anxious about your financial future. This is especially true if you’ve suffered an injury that limits your ability to work. The idea that you may never return to work is indeed scary. Thankfully, accident victims have certain rights afforded to them – including the right to pursue compensation from reckless drivers who caused their collision.
While many questions may remain about your health and financial future, understanding how much to expect from a back injury car accident settlement can help ease your mind. Only an experienced personal injury attorney can offer you specific insight into your case, but by learning about the factors that impact the average settlement amount of such a claim, you’ll arm yourself with much-needed facts about your rights.
Calculating Back Injury Car Crash Settlements
Insurance companies use complex formulas and algorithms to determine the value of each car accident claim filed. Though it’s impossible to know their exact methodology, car crash lawyers generally advise accident victims to tally up their financial damages to understand how much their settlement is potentially worth. Using a car crash accident calculator can help you do the math.
To make best use of such a tool, you’ll want to gather up any bills, invoices and receipts you’ve accrued because of the crash. Everything from the ambulance bill to the prescription medication costs can be factored into your settlement. Of course, back injury victims may have a lifetime of treatment ahead of them, making it difficult to put a dollar figure on the impact of the crash. A car accident lawyer can help you understand the full financial weight of the injuries you’ve sustained.
If you’ve missed work or lost out on the chance to earn a living because of your injuries, you can also include lost wages in your calculations. Whether you missed a week of shifts because you were hospitalized or you’ve been out of work since the incident occurred, the financial damage can be recouped in an accident settlement. Even if the future of your career looks murky because of new physical limitations brought on by your back injury, it’s worth including the costs you’ve accrued thus far in your calculations.
In addition to the financial damages you’ve incurred, you can be compensated for the pain and suffering caused by the wreck. Emotional anguish and loss of normal bodily functions can also be factored into your settlement. These damages are difficult to assign a dollar figure to, which is where settlement multipliers come into play.
Rather than guess at how much your non-monetary damages are worth, victims can add up their financial damages and apply a multiplier to understand the potential value of their settlement. Generally speaking, these multipliers range between one and five, depending on the severity of the injuries. One is used for more mild injuries, while five is reserved only for the most serious, life-changing, catastrophic injuries.
Back injuries often warrant a high settlement multiplier because of how significantly they impact the lives of the victims. Any time an injury changes the way you walk, stand, sit, or earn a living, the settlement amount increases. If you now depend on others in ways you didn’t before the wreck, your multiplier will be bumped up even higher.
The Value of Your Back Injury Car Accident Settlement
While online tools like our car accident settlement calculator can help you better understand the value of your claim, there’s no substitute for legal advice from an experienced attorney. Back injury settlements can be difficult to calculate, especially if your medical future is uncertain. In fact, many lawyers advise clients to wait until they’ve reached maximum medical improvement, or MMI, before filing a claim. Depending on local car accident statutes of limitations, you may need to act sooner, though.
Before you take your next legal steps, it’s a good idea to schedule a consultation with a local car accident lawyer. While many accident claims can be handled without an attorney, back injury settlements are more complex. With so much riding on the result of the claim, it’s worth hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer to represent you in negotiations with the insurance company.
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