Car accidents are, unfortunately, a common occurrence on our roads. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were over 5 million car accidents that caused over 1.5M injuries in the United States in 2020 alone.
While some of these car accidents are minor fender benders, others can result in serious injuries that may have a lasting impact on your health and well-being. If you’ve been involved in an auto accident that wasn’t your fault, you may be wondering how the injuries you sustained will impact the value of your case. This article discusses some common injuries and how jurors tend to assess case value or what a car insurance company may think a jury will assess in a car accident injury settlement.
The Kryder Law Group, LLC Accident and Injury Lawyers has helped car accident victims deal with the legal process of a car accident case and car accident settlements. From minor injuries to severe injuries, we understand how life-changing injuries sustained from a car accident can be. That is why we will work on your behalf to examine all the details of your car accident lawsuit and get the maximum compensation possible in your car accident settlement or jury award.
Contact us today to speak to a personal injury lawyer from our law firm to begin working on your car accident case even while you continue to recover from your potentially serious injury.
In this Article
What damages could you be eligible for?
Jurors tend to award damages for a personal injury claim by evaluating the following factors:
Pain and suffering damages – This includes physical pain and emotional distress.
Loss of a normal life/loss of enjoyment of life – This includes the inability to participate in activities you once enjoyed due to your injuries.
Medical bills – This covers the cost of all past and future medical expenses related to your injuries.
Lost wages – This is the amount of money you would have earned if you hadn’t been injured in the accident.
Scarring and disfigurement – This covers physical scars that are permanent and visible.
The precise facts of each case and the injuries involved heavily influences how much in damages jurors tend to award. A car accident attorney at The Kryder Law Group, LLC can help determine the value of your injuries based on the average settlement amount from an insurance company or jury award in a similar personal injury claim.
What are the most common car accident injuries?
Here are some common car accident injuries and how they may impact the value of your car accident claim and what financial compensation you get in your car accident settlement or jury verdict if your case goes to trial:
Whiplash is a neck injury that occurs in a car accident when the force of the collision causes the head to be suddenly jerked forward or backward. This can happen in a rear-end collision when the force of the impact causes the head to snap backwards and then forwards. Whiplash can also occur in side-impact collisions.
Symptoms of whiplash can include neck pain and stiffness, headaches, dizziness, and difficulty concentrating. In some cases, whiplash can also lead to nerve damage.
Whiplash injuries can vary in severity. For example, someone who only experiences mild neck pain may recover within a few weeks. However, someone with more severe whiplash may require long-term treatment, including physiotherapy and massage.
Seek Medical Attention As Soon As Possible
If you’ve been involved in a car accident and are experiencing any of the above symptoms, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible. Once your car crash injuries have been diagnosed, your lawyer can help you determine the value of your case and you you might receive in a car accident settlement with the insurance company.
Minor Back Pain
These injuries can occur even in low speed, low impact collisions and may involve small compact cars or large trucks. Due to the shock of your auto accident, you initially may not even notice that you suffered any back injury until hours or even days later when you start to feel neck or back soreness and headaches. Your back and neck pain may even radiate into your arms or legs.
To treat this injury, you may visit your primary care physician, who would likely diagnose you with a minor neck sprain and recommend chiropractic care. You may be able to attend a series of sessions over a few weeks and ultimately make a full recovery.
How Minor Back Pain Can Affect the Value of Your Case
In these car accident cases, jurors will award you for your past pain and suffering resulting from your injuries plus the medical expenses and medical bills incurred from visiting your primary care physician and attending chiropractic appointments. And in a car accident case like this, since you did not miss any work and your daily living was not impacted, you would not receive any compensation for lost income or loss of a normal life. The insurance company would also take these factors into account when offering a car accident settlement.
Chronic Back Pain
Chronic back pain can result from low impact collisions or more serious crashes. You might feel immediate pain in the upper back and neck as a result of the auto accident, and an ambulance may be called to take you to the hospital for treatment.
While your X-rays do not show any signs of fractures, you may be prescribed a neck brace by your emergency room physician and told to follow up with an orthopedist in the next few days. You may then schedule an appointment with your orthopedist, who diagnoses you with a herniated disc (dislocation of your vertebral spine). As a result, you may undergo three months of physical therapy to help your back and neck heal so you can get back to the life you loved.
During this time, you may be unable to work and need to miss out on some fun experiences such as a family vacation or your weekly yoga class. It may be difficult to do normal tasks such as putting on a shirt, performing cleaning and yard work, and reaching for items in higher cabinets.
In some instances, these injuries may not heal with physical therapy alone, and a spinal fusion or epidural steroid injections may become necessary.
How Chronic Back Pain Can Affect the Value of Your Case
Since your injuries 1) objectively manifested in a MRI, 2) are directly supported by physical therapy and medical records, and 3) lasted for a protracted amount of time, jurors will tend to award larger damages for pain and suffering. Fair car accident settlements will take these same factors into consideration.
A jury may also award damages for lost wages associated with your recovery period and for your past medical expenses and future medical bills, including diagnostic X-rays, MRIs, and ongoing physical therapy. Additionally, they may award damages for loss of a normal life since you could not perform daily tasks and missed out on family events. These are the same factors that increase car accident settlement amounts. An experienced car accident attorney can help negotiate for a fair settlement from the other driver’s insurance company for these types of damages.
In the event a surgery is necessary, jurors will award damages for the pain and suffering associated with the surgery and its recovery period, surgical costs, and any scarring that resulted from the invasive surgery that was performed. These procedures can be very expensive and tend to substantially increase a case’s value, especially if the insurance company defendants concede it was related to your accident. Surgery is another factor that can also increase the value of your car accident settlement.
Fractures typically involve higher speed collisions where airbags deploy and the car’s interior is partially damaged. You may need to be extricated from the vehicle and taken to a hospital for emergency surgery.
These accidents often result in compound or spiral fractures, which involve painful surgeries to stabilize your limbs and a protracted recovery period that may take over a year. Depending on the precise injuries, you may experience unusual sensations such as burning or pins and needles near the fracture site due to nerve damage.
How Fractures Can Affect the Value of Your Case
You will likely be awarded greater compensation for pain and suffering due to your injury and the resulting surgeries and recovery. This award will include future pain and suffering since your injuries are permanent. Additionally, you will be compensated for your medical bills and for your lost wages, including future lost wages if you are still recovering at the time of your settlement.
Your award for loss of a normal life will also be higher as you will be unable to do many of the things you used to enjoy for possibly over a year, if not longer. Finally, you will be awarded for any related surgical scars, especially scars that are readily visible. Car accident settlements and jury awards both take these factors into account.
Traumatic Brain Injuries and Paralysis
Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) and paralysis are drastic, life changing injuries that affect not only a victim, but their family as well. These cases may result in permanent brain damage, necessitating 24 hour caregivers, regular visits to neurology physicians, and years of occupational and physical therapy.
Depending on the severity, victims may experience permanent cognitive injuries affecting their memory, ability to walk, use their hands, and their reasoning skills. They may be unable to walk without assistance for many years, sometimes for the rest of their life. Coupled with the emotional toll on victims and their families, the medical expenses needed to keep victims comfortable, which can reach millions of dollars, will permanently change the family’s day to day living.
How TBIs and Paralysis Can Affect the Value of Your Case
These catastrophic injuries are life changing, both for you and for your family. Jurors tend to award very large damages as these accidents usually result in permanent, lifelong disabilities. You will be awarded for all related medical charges, life care expenses, rehabilitation, and occupational and physical therapy resulting from the accident.
Economic expert witnesses will be helpful in calculating both past and future costs of your care. You will also receive a large award for scarring and disfigurement and for medical devices you must now use, such as crutches and wheelchairs.
Permanent disabilities can also result in large awards for loss of a normal life since you are unable to do many of the things you used to do and may miss out on major lifetime and social milestones.
Your spouse may also be able to file their own claim for loss of consortium to recover the lost love and affection you had before your accident. Jurors often award large multi-million dollar verdicts in these cases.
How The Kryder Law Group, LLC Can Help You Get the Compensation You Deserve
If you’ve been seriously injured in a car accident, the lawyers at The Kryder Law Group, LLC can help you get the compensation you deserve. We have experience handling car accident cases involving serious injuries and know how to build a strong case to get you the maximum amount of compensation possible. We know how to negotiate with the insurance companies to maximize your car accident settlement and can take your case to court if necessary. Contact us today for a free consultation.
What should you do if you’re injured in a car accident?
The first step is to seek medical treatment, even if you don’t think you’re seriously injured. Many seemingly minor injuries, such as whiplash, may not present themselves until days or weeks after the accident.
Once you’ve seen a doctor, it’s important to contact an experienced car accident lawyer. The Kryder Law Group, LLC is experienced in car accident law and can help you get the compensation to which you are entitled. We can give you an idea of what your case may be worth and give you car accident settlement examples. Give us a call today, and a personal injury attorney will walk you through everything step-by-step with no hidden fees.
Why It’s Important to Have an Experienced Lawyer on Your Side
When you’ve been seriously injured in a car accident, it’s important to have an experienced lawyer on your side. At The Kryder Law Group, LLC, our car accident lawyers have seen it all. We know how to build a strong case and get you the maximum amount of compensation possible. We will investigate all avenues of recovery including your own bodily injury insurance coverage.
Contact our law firm today for a free consultation. Our experience with personal injury claims can help you understand the value of your case and what options are available to you. Speak with a personal injury attorney from our law firm as soon as possible.
What to Expect During the Legal Process
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, the legal process can be daunting. The Kryder Law Group, LLC is here to help you every step of the way. We’ll explain what to expect and how we can help you get the compensation you deserve.
Call Today for a Free Case Evaluation
The first step is to contact us for a free consultation. During this consultation, we’ll review the facts of your case and determine the best course of action. If we decide to move forward, we’ll begin gathering evidence and building your personal injury case. We’ll determine what insurance coverage may be available including your own bodily injury liability coverage or insurance coverage from the other driver.
Once we have a strong case, we’ll negotiate with the auto insurance companies on your behalf. If we can’t reach an agreement for the car accident settlement amounts for your severe injuries in your car accident claim, we’re prepared to take your case to trial.
No matter what, you can rest assured knowing that The Kryder Law Group, LLC is on your side and fighting for you and your car accident settlement. Contact us today for a free consultation.