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A car accident can be one of the most terrifying experiences in a person’s life. Car crashes often cause serious injuries, both physically and mentally. Some of the most common and most serious injuries involve passengers’ backs or necks. Such injuries can come compounding medical expenses and financial insecurity. If this is the case, victims of such car accidents should consider consulting an experienced car accident injury attorney as soon as possible to learn more about their options and learn how they can get their lives back on track.
If you or a loved one has been in an accident resulting in a back or neck injury, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 for a 100% free case evaluation with our Texas car accident attorneys.
Factors Affecting Neck and Back Injury Settlement
Although there may be general standards across different situations, calculating an exact number for every settlement is extremely difficult. Every case is unique, and the settlement calculations are not an exact science. Regardless, understanding the factors that can affect the value of car accident neck and back injury settlements can be a helpful strategy when it comes to setting expectations and working through the negotiation process.
1. Severity of the Injuries
Perhaps the most important factor in estimating the value of your injury settlement is the extent of your injuries. Generally, the more severe the injuries the larger the settlement. This includes the difference between broken bones and spinal damage all the way to cuts and bruises. Another important factor to consider as it relates to the severity of the injuries is the permanency of such injuries. If injuries are permanent, such as disfigurement or chronic pain, you may be able to receive a larger settlement offer.
In simple terms: the more severe the injury, the higher the likelihood of a larger injury settlement.
2. Time Off Work
Another factor to consider is how the injuries you sustained have impacted your livelihood. Injuries can affect one's mobility or basic capability to perform previously simple tasks. If you are forced to take time off work, that could contribute to a larger settlement offer. Be sure to keep track of any time missed due to your injuries or any changes in your lifestyle as these will come in handy when it comes time to negotiate a settlement.
3. Expenses Incurred
Being the victim in a car accident can cause medical expenses to pile up. Trips to the doctor can become a regular part of your schedule and some treatments can be quite expensive. As it relates to settlements, frequent trips to the hospital or doctors, especially doctors with specialties, can lead to larger settlements. It is important to keep track of all the medical expenses incurred so that further down the line you can have evidence to support your claim.
Getting into a car accident can also cause expenses to accumulate as it relates to the repair of your vehicle. Most people use their vehicles on a daily basis to get to and from work or to run necessary errands, so it is safe to say that an operating vehicle is essential in most people’s day to day lives. However, some people may not have the available funds to repair their vehicle on their own especially if they were the victim in a car accident. For this reason, it is important for victims to hold on to all receipts related to vehicle repair and have them readily available when it comes time to negotiate a settlement.
4. Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering is possibly the most difficult factor to determine with an exact dollar amount. Pain and suffering can result from an accumulation of all the previous factors as somewhat of a catch-all category. It is important to remember however that pain and suffering can be both physical and mental in nature. As this is such a difficult number to calculate, it is extremely important to keep a detailed account of the pain and suffering you experienced because of the accident and the results of that pain and suffering on your daily routine and finances.
Who Caused the Accident?
Immediately after a car accident, it may be totally obvious who caused the accident, or it may be difficult to determine. In this regard, it is important to know that Texas is a “fault” car insurance statement. What this means is that you may file a claim or lawsuit against the driver who was determined to be at-fault for the accident. Filing a claim or lawsuit is your best bet when it comes to being fairly compensated for the injuries you sustained from the car accident.
Car accidents can be the result of a variety of causes. Some common causes of car accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Reckless driving
- Hazardous road conditions
- Drunk driving
- Vehicle defects
- Weather conditions
- Failure to obey traffic laws
- Inexperienced drivers
When it comes time to file your claim, having strong evidence is essential. The stronger the evidence the higher the likelihood of a larger settlement. Evidence can come in many forms whether it be photographs of your vehicle’s damages or the injuries you sustained, or records of the expenses incurred resulting from the accident. It is difficult to argue with numbers and pictures so keeping detailed records of all the evidence you have gathered can be your greatest strength when it comes time to negotiate a settlement.
How to Calculate the Value of Your Back and Neck Injury Compensation
Again, the severity of your injuries is one of the most important factors in determining the value of the compensation you may be entitled to. The difference in severity of back and neck injuries can be drastic, ranging from spinal cord injuries causing paralysis to basic whiplash. But keep in mind, your primary concern should be your own health and well-being. Back and neck injuries can be very serious, so be sure to seek out all necessary medical care.
When it comes time to properly calculating the value of your back and neck injury compensation, doctors and your lawyer will likely be your biggest assets. Doctors can assess your injuries and their severity and explain to you the treatment that will be necessary. Lawyers on the other hand can explain to you your options as it relates to receiving compensation for the treatment you may receive. Remember that you never have to go through this process alone and seeking help is likely your best option.
Why Hire a Lawyer
Hiring a lawyer may be the best decision you make when it comes to filing a claim or lawsuit against the party responsible. An experienced car accident attorney can explain to you potential outcomes and provide estimates as to the value of your claim. An experienced car accident injury attorney will also most likely have been through this process many times before and can help calm your nerves and better prepare you for what lies ahead.
It is important to remember that you don’t have to go through this process alone. By hiring a lawyer you can have someone by your side every step of the way guiding you through the process and working in your best interest. If you want to truly seek the most out of your claim, your best option may be to hire an experienced car accident injury attorney as soon as possible.
How to Seek Compensation with a Lawyer
As explained above, settlement calculations are not an exact science and it is borderline impossible to have a completely accurate estimate. Therefore, experience is key. Seeking compensation with an experienced car accident injury attorney can prepare you for what to expect and can help manage your expectations on how much you may be able to seek. For experienced attorneys in the field, your case will likely not be their first so they will know what to expect and can help explain to you how to best increase your chances of a favorable settlement.
Remember, hiring an experienced attorney may be the best decision you make in an effort to seek the money you deserve if you find yourself to be the victim in a car accident. Being fairly compensated is the ultimate goal, and hiring a lawyer can be your first step in reaching that goal. As the victim, you should take every necessary step to make sure you get what is owed to you.
Legal Time Limits
For all personal injury lawsuits there are time limits in which victims are allowed to pursue their claims. These legal time limits are called statutes of limitations. Every state has different statutes of limitations as they relate to personal injury causes, some running from two years all the way up to six years.
In Texas, the deadline for filing a personal injury lawsuit is two years from the date of the car accident itself. It is important to remember this date is filing outside of this two-year limit may prevent your case from ever being heard.
GET HELP FROM TEXAS PERSONAL INJURY LAWYERS
At Zinda Law Group, our Texas accident attorneys have the experience, knowledge, and resources necessary to help you seek the maximum compensation for your injuries. And as one of our clients, you will pay nothing unless we win your case.
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