In Texas, a typical car accident settlement amount will include payment for related medical bills and lost wages, plus 2-3 times that amount for pain and suffering. However, the specific amount will be tied to unique factors in your case, and it can range from a few hundred to millions of dollars.
Even though there is no one-size-fits-all settlement value of a car accident claim, experienced personal injury lawyers can provide a personalized analysis. Talk to the attorneys at Crowe Arnold & Majors, LLP as soon as possible–and definitely before signing anything to ensure you are getting a fair value for your claim.
Types of damages available after a TX car accident settlement
Car accident settlements are made up of two types of damages: economic and non-economic. Some car accidents, namely those accidents caused by drunk drivers, may also be eligible for punitive damages. However, that cannot be included in an insurance settlement– for punitive damages, you would need to go to trial.
- Economic damages – are awarded to replace monetary losses. The most common include medical bills, lost wages, lost earning capacity, rehabilitation costs, and household services. If you need future medical treatment or medication, that should be calculated and included as well.
- Non-economic damages – are intangible losses like pain and suffering, emotional hardship, disability, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of consortium, and damage to reputation.
You will need to prove damages with a reasonable degree of certainty. Your lawyer may rely on a combination of documents, testimony, and even expert witnesses to ensure that your claim is not undervalued.
How car accident settlements are calculated
Insurance companies use computer programs that calculate losses like pain and suffering. For example, these programs will ask for details like the total cost of medical treatment, the type of injury, the severity of the injury, the geographical area, and your attorney’s history of taking cases to trial– to come up with a settlement range.
A popular alternative to computer programs is a multiplier approach– the total of economic losses is multiplied by a number determined by factors like the type and severity of the injury. For example, if the bills and lost wages total $15,000, the injury is of moderate severity, and the prognosis is good, a multiplier of 2 may be assigned. The pain and suffering would be calculated at $30,000, and the total settlement would come to $45,000.
No matter which method the insurance company uses with your claim, there is a risk of it being undervalued. An experienced Dallas car accident lawyer will call attention to factors that insurance companies often overlook. For example, if the injury had an unusual effect on your life or you’re not healing as expected– your lawyer will demand a greater amount.
Factors that can diminish your car accident claim
Some of the things that may lower your settlement include:
- A prior injury that affected the same part of your body injured in the crash
- Your negligence – Texas allows you to recover from another at-fault party as long as you do not bear more than 50% of the fault for the crash
- Delayed treatment, failure to follow medical advice, or other signs that your injury is not as serious as claimed
- Personal factors like how honest you or your witnesses appear when testifying
Dallas car accident lawyers prepare you to address these and other issues that may arise.
Contact us for a free evaluation
Choosing a skilled personal injury lawyer and presenting a strong case can help you secure a fair settlement. At Crowe Arnold & Majors, LLP, we stand up for the rights of Texans facing off against big insurance companies. Call or click today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with our experienced Dallas car accident lawyers to find out about your legal options.