Depending on who’s data you’re looking at, the average settlement for whiplash injuries after a car accident is somewhere in the neighborhood of $10,000. However, it’s important to keep in mind that this, or any average car accident settlement amount you might find, will be skewed by a few million dollar settlements.
Another thing to consider about average whiplash settlements is co-existing injuries… is that $2,000,000 whiplash settlement the result of solely a whiplash injury, or were there other injuries or factors present? Many times when severe whiplash occurs, there can be traumatic brain injuries, concussions, and broken vertebrae. All of these injuries will increase the amount of the settlement, but were they really due to whiplash?
A less talked about factor in calculating car accident settlements is income, but it can play a large role. A surgeon or a high level tech CEO who can’t turn their head or look at a computer screen for a month might lose tens of thousands of dollars in income in that time, which will be included in the settlement offer. A part time, minimum wage earner will probably earn a thousand dollars or less in that same month. Even if all other factors remain the same, the settlement for the surgeon/ceo will be a lot higher simply due to income discrepancy.
Some factors involved in calculating a whiplash settlement after a car accident include:
- Medical expenses to treat the initial whiplash injury, such as hospital co-pays, neck braces, etc.
- Loss of income resulting in not being able to work due to the whiplash injury, or missing work for medical appointments related to the accident.
- Future medical expenses: Many whiplash injuries require ongoing chiropractic care, physical therapy, or both. This can be difficult to estimate in the beginning stages of a whiplash settlement negotiation, so a lot of car accident attorneys recommend finishing treatment before filing a claim for your whiplash injury.
- Pain & suffering/impact on daily life: Generally speaking, the more you’re day to day life is negatively affected, the higher your whiplash settlement will be.