Car accidents are terrible events, often leading to severe injuries and financial losses. For example, the cost of property damage in crashes is about $4,600 per vehicle. Conversely, evident injuries cost $28,500 and more. A Douglasville auto accident attorney can help you get compensation as an auto crash victim.
However, many accident survivors have several questions. For instance, they want to know the average settlement they can get from the at-fault party. Calculating this figure alone will be challenging. This is because you need to consider different factors. Fortunately, you can escape this stress if you hire a lawyer.
What Is a Settlement in Douglasville?
Thousands of accidents happen on Georgia roads annually. Motor vehicle crashes are the primary cause of injury deaths in the state. In addition, they’re the second leading source of hospitalizations. Suppose all these accident cases were to end up in the courts. Then, they’ll crowd the court’s dockets for years.
Consequently, the victims wouldn’t get compensation quickly either. That’s why many car crash survivors accept insurance settlements. An average settlement is any resolution of legal disputes without the court’s intervention. Essentially, it’s an agreement that eliminates litigation.
Notably, you can accept compensation before filing a lawsuit. Conversely, settlement negotiations can continue during litigation. It’s thus not unusual to find parties sign settlement agreements while in court. However, the average settlement terminates the proceedings. Furthermore, the accident victim agrees not to file a new action.
What Is the Average Settlement for a Douglasville Car Accident?
First, all motor vehicle collisions are different. The losses are unique to each accident. So, there’s no uniform settlement amount for Douglasville car crashes. However, the Insurance Information Institute has an estimate of national compensation amounts. The average compensation in 2019 was:
- $18,417 for bodily injuries, and
- $4,525 for property damage.
However, your settlement may be higher or lower than these figures. This is because different factors affect car accident compensation amounts. We explain the most crucial aspects below.
The Severity of Your Injuries
The extent of your wounds is the primary determinant of your settlement. For example, car accident injuries require treatment resulting in medical bills. So, severe injuries mean more hospital bills. On the other hand, you wouldn’t have to pay much for minor wounds.
You thus cannot recover more than your injuries cost. This only applies to medical damages, though. However, your physical wounds can lead to other types of harm. For example, you can suffer:
- Emotional distress, and
- Pain and suffering.
In both cases, you may require expert medical attention. Consequently, you can get additional compensation.
Other Financial Losses
Medical bills aren’t the only sources of economic losses. Instead, several other factors can drain your resources following a crash. Some of them include:
- Cost of vehicle repair
- Lost or damaged personal property
- Cost of domestic help
- Alternative transportation
An excellent attorney will calculate all these bills. Then, they’ll ask the fault party to compensate you for them during negotiations. Proving these losses is pretty easy too. All you have to do is show the receipts for the services.
Vehicle Insurance Policy Limits
Insurance policies don’t cover all extents of damage. Instead, vehicle insurance coverages have contractual limits. Suppose a driver has the minimum coverage in Georgia. This coverage is $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident for bodily injury and $25,000 per accident for property damage.
Now, imagine the driver hitting your car, causing $30,000 in medical expenses. But, then, you can only recover up to $25,000 from their insurance company. Therefore, you’ll have to find another source for the remaining $5,000 or file a lawsuit against the motorist.
Sometimes, the responsible party in an accident is clear. So, the victim doesn’t have to prove their fault. However, frequently, liability isn’t clear. The fault party may even deny responsibility for the crash. Sadly, this complicates the compensation process. But, if the fault is apparent, you can get a high settlement.
This is because the insurance company knows they have a bad case. Therefore, they wouldn’t want the issue to get to court. However, suppose there’s room for doubt about the accident’s cause. Then, you may not get a large settlement. Your compensation would instead depend on your ability to establish liability.
Are There Statutory Caps for Damages in Douglasville?
No, there are no limits to your recoverable compensatory damages. Georgia has left the group of states that have statutory limits for damages. Statutory limitations generally apply in the courts. The judge will ensure that the jury cannot award damages exceeding the cap.
However, insurance negotiators also considered these laws during settlement discussions. Fortunately, the Georgia Supreme Court has since abolished such rules. This means that you can claim and recover any amount as a settlement. So, the insurer cannot claim that your request exceeds the statutory cap.
What Is a Fair Compensation?
Indeed, settlement amounts are primarily subjective. They depend on the circumstances of each case. However, defining a fair settlement is an objective endeavor. Fairness means that the payment covers all your financial and other losses from the crash.
This would include:
- Physical injuries
- Emotional damage
- Property losses
- Other non-economic losses
The strength of your evidence also points to the fairness of your average settlement. The stronger your case, the higher your settlement should be. So, suppose you have lots of evidence supporting your claim. Getting a small compensation will thus be unfair.
How Do I Get the Maximum Settlement for My Douglasville Car Accident Case?
Only solid evidence can get you the money you want. This applies whether you’re filing a lawsuit or attending insurance negotiations. So, it would be best if you built a strong case against the fault party. In addition, you must also establish why you deserve the money you’re demanding.
The insurer and fault party will not pay a large settlement because you asked nicely. Instead, you must show they’ll pay more if the case gets to court. This is where an excellent attorney becomes necessary. Therefore, hiring a lawyer after a crash is very vital. They significantly increase your chances of getting a fair settlement.
Get Fair Compensation With the Best Douglasville Attorneys!
Have you or a loved one been in a Douglasville car accident? Then, you might have lost your property and sustained injuries. Thankfully, Georgia law allows you to proceed against the fault party directly. You can sue them or accept an insurance settlement.
However, whatever choice you make, you’ll need a personal injury attorney in Douglasville, Georgia. At Hartley, Rowe & Fowler, we have just the right lawyers for you. Our attorneys have spent their careers fighting for accident victims. In addition, we’ve won significant settlements for our clients. So, call us today for a FREE consultation on your case.