It is not possible for anyone to tell you exactly what your car accident claim is worth until you’ve gone through the process and evaluated the various factors that will affect the value of the claim. For example, you need to tell your side of the story, establish liability, collect medical bills, and have a car wreck attorney review and advise on your case.
Of course, if you could get an instant answer to this question, you’d likely end up with less money than you deserve to compensate for your losses and injuries. It’s better to have an opportunity to present your case and have it professionally evaluated.
Every client is different, and after doing this for many years, we’ve determined that no matter how similar two car accidents may seem, they are never identical.
What we want to do is ensure that you are able to recover the maximum amount of compensation. That means that we work to build a compelling case, supported by evidence of medical records and other damages, to get the fair settlement that you deserve.
What Factors Will Impact The Value Of My Florida Accident Claim?
A quick settlement is tempting when you’re worried about the stress of damaged property, lost wages, medical expenses, etc. It is far wiser, however, to consult with an attorney to determine if there are additional factors that might increase the value of your case.
For example, consider the following:
- You fail to account for long term psychological effects of your injuries.
- You fail to anticipate the strain on personal life caused by injuries.
- You fail to accurately predict the duration of your medical treatment.
- Your condition worsens over time and you face more expensive medical procedures.
These are very common mistakes that people make after a car accident. There are many things that you cannot predict, and it is all too easy to fall for the insurance company’s attempts to settle for a low amount before you have time to realize what you’re in for.
When an experienced car accident attorney represents you, your claim is going to end up having more value. The attorney can help you see the big picture, plan for the future, and to avoid settling your case for an amount that is insufficient to cover your damages.
If My Accident Is Similar To Another, Can You Predict Its Value?
There are no two cases that are exactly alike, no matter how similar they seem, so the answer to this question is ‘no.’ Consider the following example:
- Driver One is a middle-aged woman who has had neck surgery in the past. She experiences neck pain and back pain after being rear ended. Unfortunately, she is unable to miss work and cannot make it to the doctor for a few weeks after the crash. She is ultimately diagnosed with having whiplash and will end up needing some physical therapy.
- Driver Two is a pregnant woman in her 30’s with no pre-existing conditions. She was rear-ended and taken to the hospital to examine pain in her back and neck. She is diagnosed with whiplash and receives a course of treatment that doesn’t endanger her pregnancy.
Even if both women were rear-ended in the same location on the same day, while traveling at the same speed with the same weather conditions, and even if they have the same insurance companies, as do the at-fault drivers, their cases will still not be identical.
No matter how close the circumstances are, each driver will receive different medical treatment and will seek that treatment at different types. They will each respond in different ways emotionally, and their injuries will affect their lifestyles in different ways. In the end, their claims have different values.
Is There a Three Times Formula For Florida Car Wreck Claims?
Many people believe that there is a magic formula for determining the value of a car accident claim. The idea is that you will receive three times the amount of your medical bills.
It is possible that you could receive three times your medical bills, but it is also possible for you to receive less than this or more than this.
In all, it is best to avoid making assumptions about the value of your case based on any kind of formula. Instead, contact an attorney to evaluate your case.
What Kind Of Expenses Can I Be Compensated For After My Wreck?
When personal injuries occur through a car accident, we look to recover in three different areas:
- Medical bills, past and future
- Lost wages / lost earning capacity, past and future
- Pain, suffering, disfigurement, disability, past and future
Again, the numbered factors above don’t apply to every case, and you should always have an experienced injury lawyer evaluate your specific claim.
Can I Ever Know My Accident Case Value More Quickly?
Accidents that leave a person with traumatic injuries; broken bones; the need for surgery; permanent hardware; and/or cause death, may constitute what is known as a “policy limits demand.”
In some cases, an accident will cause a serious traumatic injury, broken bones, surgical procedures, or even the loss of a loved one. At times, these circumstances may constitute the ‘policy limits demand.’ This means that the personal injury attorney would request from the at-fault insurance company a ‘certified declarations sheet’ (DEC) to reveal the total amount of money available in the policy.
This information lets you know exactly how much money you can ask for, and your attorney will help you decide if your injuries justify the entire amount to be paid in compensation. Even so, there will be other factors in your case that can affect how much the case is worth.
As an example, if your attorney is able to reduce some of your medical bills, you will receive a larger settlement. If your attorney can secure Underinsured Motorist Coverage (UIM) from your own policy to make up for the lack in the at-fault driver’s policy, then this could increase your settlement.
Should I Have A Florida Attorney Review The Insurance Policy?
It is always a good idea to have an attorney to review any insurance policy. This will help to ensure that you never accept a settlement that is less than what you deserve and never have to face the confusing language of the insurance contract alone.
Most people who don’t review insurance policies for a living are not able to understand everything in the paperwork of an insurance policy on their own. An attorney with experience in reviewing insurance policies for car accident victims can offer the right guidance for your case.
When you’re serious about getting a fair settlement, having an attorney to represent you will be the first step in finding out exactly what your case might be worth.
Five Factors That Can Maximize Compensation for Your Injury Case
The goal of an insurance claims adjuster is to convince you to settle early for a low amount. This is why the insurance company can make settlement sound like a simple and fast process. They’ll encourage adding up your medical bills, lost income, and an amount for pain and suffering, and then tell you that you’ll be good to go with a fair settlement. Your case is NOT this simple.
When you’re trying to maximize the compensation for your injury case, consider the following five factors and ask an attorney to help you evaluate the complexity of your case.
You should consider the severity of your injuries, how much treatment will be required in the future, and what sort of estimate you can get from a medical professional. You can get a basic estimate for your current and future treatments from your doctor.
No two victims of a car accident are identical, and some may have worse driving records and/or criminal histories than others. This can affect how you are treated in your accident claim.
Your age can also be a factor as the elderly and adolescents can expect to receive different treatment compared to the average 30 to 40 year old driver.
The Other Driver
You have to consider the other driver as a factor in the value of your case as well. The other driver may have been intoxicated, may have a history of past claims, or may be treated differently based on age, driving history, and criminal history as well.
The Damages and Losses
All of your damages and losses need to be supported by documentation of some sort. Even pain and suffering will be determined by the numbers found in your bills for ambulances, emergency care, surgeries, prescriptions, etc. Sometimes pain and suffering is worth four times the cost of damages.
You also need documentation for lost wages, lost ability to earn income, expenses for home care, etc. There are many different formulas that are used by insurance companies to calculate the amount of various damages and compare against supplied documentation.
Then there are the property damages to consider which will actually cover much more than the vehicle that you were driving. If you lost your glasses, damaged your clothing, or required a tow service, these are all property damage expenses that can be compensated.
The Negotiation Process
If you attempt to handle the negotiation process on your own, you will be up against an unfair balance in bargaining power. In some small claims, this isn’t such a big deal, but if you really want to know what your claim might be worth, you’re much better off with an experienced attorney representing you.
This is because there is a lot of detail and documentation to review and evaluate to determine the maximum value of your auto accident injury claim.
We are here to help you with your case, and we will never charge for an initial consultation to explore what sort of case you’re dealing with and help you decide if we’re the right personal injury attorneys for you.