The amount of monetary compensation that accident victims may recover following a car accident via a personal injury settlement or litigation depends on various factors. Those factors include the severity of their injuries, the amount of time they missed from work, and other accident-specific circumstances. Therefore, monetary damage awards vary significantly from case to case.
To maximize the monetary compensation that you receive in your car accident case, you should undergo prompt medical treatment as quickly as possible after your accident. Next, you should retain skilled legal counsel to handle your case immediately. A lawyer can determine your eligibility for filing a claim and assist you during all settlement negotiations with the at-fault party’s insurance company.
Moreover, if your case must proceed through the court system, your lawyer can represent you at all courtroom proceedings (including civil jury trials), advocate for your legal interests, and pursue the highest amount of monetary recovery available to you.
The best way to know how much to expect – and how to obtain that amount – is to consult with a car accident lawyer immediately.
Types of Car Crashes That Can Lead to Serious Injuries
When people drive unreasonably and negligently, they may cause different types of accidents that leave other drivers and passengers with severe injuries.
Some of the most common types of car crashes include:
- Sideswipe accidents, where a negligent driver causes their vehicle to drift over into an adjacent travel lane, striking another car and causing the occupants to suffer injuries
- Head-on crashes, where the fronts of two vehicles strike one another, often at high rates of speed, causing severe injuries and fatalities
- Broadside accidents or T-bone collisions, where the front of one vehicle hits the side of another car, usually at a traffic intersection where a driver negligently runs a red light or stop sign and fails to yield the right-of-way to other vehicles
- Rear-end crashes, where one vehicle hits the back of another car, often causing the occupants of the front car to suffer soft tissue whiplash injuries or head injuries
- Overturn accidents, are when a speeding vehicle overturns in the middle of the roadway or a traffic intersection, often resulting in a multi-vehicle pile-up.
If another driver operated their vehicle negligently and you suffered injuries in one of these traffic accidents, you have legal rights and options open to you. A knowledgeable car accident lawyer in your area can help you explore those options and decide on the best way to proceed forward with your personal injury claim or lawsuit. Your lawyer can then help you pursue the total settlement compensation you deserve.
Car Accident Causes
Although there are some exceptions, the majority of car crashes happen when other drivers disobey traffic laws, fail to observe the road, or otherwise drive in an unsafe or careless manner.
First, some car accidents result from repeated traffic law violations, including failure to yield the right-of-way to others at the appropriate times, speeding, tailgating other vehicles, and failing to use turn signals properly. Serious traffic accidents may also occur when drivers engage in road rage, often by following other vehicles too closely or aggressively weaving in and out of heavy traffic, inadvertently causing a crash.
Car crashes may also occur when drivers are fatigued while they are behind the wheel. Fatigued driving is especially problematic with commercial truck drivers who try to stay awake for hours on end usually to reap financial incentives from the trucking companies that employ them. However, when a driver becomes fatigued, they may experience numerous physical symptoms, along with delayed reflexes and reaction time.
Consequently, a drowsy driver may not maintain control of their car or stop in time to avoid a traffic crash.
Car accidents can also happen when drivers become distracted behind the wheel. In some cases, a driver becomes distracted when they roughhouse with vehicle passengers or become fixated on a cellular device, such as a tablet or phone. At other times, drivers become distracted when they fiddle with GPS navigation systems or otherwise divert their attention away from the road. When drivers fail to watch the road attentively or fail to utilize their rearview and side view mirrors, they might fail to see an approaching pedestrian or vehicle, causing an accident.
Finally, some car accidents result from driving under the influence of alcohol or DUI. A driver is legally intoxicated when they violate established blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limits. For example, drivers of passenger vehicles who have a BAC of at least 0.08 percent are legally intoxicated. However, a zero-tolerance policy applies to commercial drivers, including truck drivers, as well as minors who are under 21 years old.
A criminal DUI conviction can lead to severe legal penalties and collateral consequences for offending drivers. Drunk drivers and their insurance companies may also have to pay various civil damages to accident victims when they cause car crashes due to their intoxication.
If you sustained injuries in a car accident that resulted from one or more of these types of negligence, a skilled personal injury lawyer in your area can help. Your lawyer can determine your likelihood of success in a personal injury claim or lawsuit and can pursue a car accident claim on your behalf with the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
Injuries in Car Collisions
Drivers and passengers who become involved in serious car accidents are often left with injuries that require them to attend ongoing medical appointments and miss significant time from work. Since every car accident case is different, not all accident victims will experience the same physical injuries and symptoms as other drivers. Instead, car accident injuries are highly circumstance-specific.
The injuries that drivers and passengers suffer in car accidents depend upon the speeds of the involved vehicles, the specific type of car accident that occurs, and the circumstances leading up to the collision.
The force of a car collision is oftentimes enough to move an accident victim’s body abruptly forward and backward or from side to side in their vehicle. In addition, a part of the accident victim’s body might hit something in their vehicle, leading to severe and sometimes permanent injuries.
Common injuries that car crash victims routinely suffer include:
- Traumatic head and brain injuries, including concussions
- Broken bones
- Rib fractures
- Internal organ damage
- Disfigurement injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Open lacerations
- Bruises from airbag deployment
Following a car crash, the most crucial step you can take is to promptly seek medical treatment at a hospital emergency facility. When an ambulance driver, relative, or friend transports you to the hospital, it shows the insurance company that your injuries are serious, that you are unable to drive yourself, that you require medical treatment, and that you are willing to make your medical treatment a top priority.
Also, by seeking early medical intervention following your car crash, you show the insurance company that your injuries are worthy of compensation, and you increase your chances of making a full monetary recovery through settlement or litigation.
While you are in a hospital emergency room, the responding medical provider can physically examine you, order X-rays and other imaging studies, render the appropriate medical diagnosis, and recommend follow-up medical treatment if your injuries require ongoing care.
Moreover, while you seek ongoing medical treatment for your injuries, a skilled personal injury lawyer in your area can begin investigating your accident circumstances, obtaining documentation from various sources, and preparing a settlement demand package for the insurance company adjuster to review.
Factors That Affect Monetary Recovery in Car Accident Cases
The monetary damages that car crash victims are eligible to recover frequently depend upon various essential factors. First, to even be eligible to recover financial compensation in your case, you must demonstrate the legal elements of your claim. First, you must prove that another driver violated their legal duty of care to you. In most circumstances, this means that the responsible driver violated one or more traffic laws.
Second, you must show that as a direct result of the other driver’s negligence, your car crash occurred. Finally, you must demonstrate that as a direct result of the car accident, you experienced at least one physical injury or other medical condition.
The monetary damages that car crash victims receive depend upon:
- The speeds of the vehicles involved in the accident
- The amount of time that the accident victim had to miss from work to recover from their injuries
- Whether the accident victim had to switch jobs and take a pay cut due to the injuries they suffered
- The extent of the accident victim’s inconvenience, pain, and suffering
- Whether the accident victim experienced emotional trauma after their accident, such as from a post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Whether the accident victim may have to miss time from work in the future due to their symptoms and ongoing medical treatment
If you are eligible to recover monetary compensation for your car accident injuries, a skilled personal injury lawyer in your area will do everything they can to maximize your overall economic recovery and ensure that you receive the total amount of damages you need in your case.
Potential Monetary Awards for Car Crash Injuries
Generally speaking, the more serious a car accident and the more significant an accident victim’s injuries, the higher the overall monetary compensation the accident victim may recover via their personal injury claim or lawsuit.
Some of the most common damages that car crash victims can recover in their case include compensation for:
- Mental distress and emotional anguish stemming from accident trauma and the physical injuries they suffered in their accident
- Loss of use of a body part, such as where the accident victim suffers a permanent spinal cord or paralysis injury that limits their ability to feel in one or more body parts or limits the use of their limbs, including hands, arms, legs, or feet
- Loss of life enjoyment when an accident victim’s injuries prevent them from enjoying life to the fullest or participating in one-enjoyed physical or recreational activities
- Lost earnings when an accident victim’s injuries prevent them from working for a period of time after their accident
- Loss of earning capacity when an accident victim’s injuries limit their ability to work after their accident
- Loss of spousal companionship when an accident victim’s injuries prevent them from being intimate with a spouse or limit their physical intimacy
- Permanent disability or disfigurement when the accident victim suffers a disfiguring injury, such as permanent scarring
- Past and future inconvenience, pain and suffering, and other intangible losses the accident victim’s injuries cause them to experience
Your lawyer can work to maximize your overall monetary award by retaining experts to testify in your case including medical experts and highlighting the overall strengths of your claim. Moreover, your lawyer can threaten the insurance company with litigation if they fail to make a fair settlement offer in your case.
Speak With an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer Near You Today
If you sustained injuries in a recent car accident that another driver caused, time can be a critical factor. This is because accident victims only have two years from the date of their accident to file a lawsuit seeking monetary recovery.
In almost all situations, filing a lawsuit after the deadline has expired automatically eliminates the accident victim’s ability to recover monetary damages. Therefore, you should take legal action as soon as possible and retain skilled legal counsel to represent you right away.
A skilled car accident lawyer can investigate your accident circumstances, file a claim with the appropriate insurance company on your behalf, and represent you during all settlement negotiations with insurance company adjusters. Your personal injury attorney in Edmonton can also handle all verbal and written communications with adjusters and initiate appropriate negotiation strategies in your case.
Finally, if the insurance company does not offer you fair monetary damages for your accident-related injuries, your lawyer can represent you at a civil jury trial in court, mediation hearing, or binding arbitration proceeding and aggressively fight for your right to the total compensation you deserve.