Being injured in an auto collision caused by another driver’s negligence can be costly physically, emotionally, and financially. As such, you are likely entitled to financial awards for numerous forms of losses incurred. However, it is also likely you have concerns about how to calculate your car accident compensation amount accurately.
Simply put, compensation is calculated by adding together the economic and non-economic costs you incurred. Simple right? Unfortunately, no, this is not always the case.
Why Car Accident Compensation Is Challenging to Assess
Some damages are fairly straightforward to calculate, such as expenses accompanied by invoices or receipts. Others are not as easy to quantify. For instance, emotional trauma can affect people differently.
Further, other factors must be considered that can affect your claim’s value, such as shared liability for a crash. Let’s take a closer look below.
How Car Accident Compensation Amounts are Calculated
Calculating damages after a collision is vital to ensure you are awarded a fair settlement or verdict. Let’s begin by breaking down exactly what is meant by economic and non-economic damages:
These damages are easily quantifiable and can be calculated by adding up expenses you were billed for, such as:
- Medical bills
- Lost income
- Property damage or lost property
- Other out-of-pocket expenses related to the accident
It is important to keep all invoices and receipts related to these losses so you or your attorney can use them to prove your expenses later.
Non-economic damages are losses sustained by an injured party that are not defined in strictly monetary terms. They apply to the subjective harm suffered from the pain, suffering, and emotional distress caused by the accident. In wrongful death lawsuits, damages such as loss of consortium and companionship would apply here as well.
A common method used to calculate this type of loss is known as the “multiplier method.” The process involves taking the total amount of your economic damages and multiplying them by a certain number to determine the value of your non-economic damages. The multiplier can vary depending on:
- The severity of your injuries
- Your recovery time
- The impact and duration of your injuries
- Your diagnosis and prognosis
- How much fault is apportioned to the other party
Bear in mind, due to the laws regarding comparative negligence, if you are more than 50% responsible for your injuries, you are barred from recovering damages altogether.
Support to Help You Assess the Value of Your Claim
Assessing the value of your claim accurately may seem like a difficult task, especially while still recovering from the accident. However, you deserve to be compensated appropriately, so it is vital to do everything possible to document your losses in the best way possible. In addition, working with an injury attorney who can help you put together a settlement package can be beneficial in reducing the stress of the situation.
Other Factors Can Affect the Value of Your Claim
Assessing and calculating the financial losses you incurred is one part of the process. Other factors will also affect how much compensation you ultimately receive, such as:
The Type of Insurance Coverage Available
The minimum liability insurance coverage you are required to carry by law is:
- $25,000 for bodily injury and $50,000 per accident
- $25,000 for property damage per accident
Suppose your damages exceed the maximum limits of your insurance coverage. In that case, you may be able to pursue compensation from the driver (or their employer if they contributed to the accident) by filing a civil lawsuit. To be successful, you will need to prove the other party caused the accident by gathering evidence to support your case.
An injury lawyer can be of assistance by examining the details of your insurance policy, as well as those of other potentially liable parties. The goal is to explore every possible avenue from which you can seek compensation.
Your Interaction with the Insurance Company
What you say to an insurance company can affect your claim and the amount of compensation you can recover. An injury lawyer can manage all communications with insurers to ensure you avoid common pitfalls that could harm your case. Remember, any statement you make can be used against you at a later date.
Further, insurers typically seek to pay out as little as possible during settlement negotiations, while an attorney will build a case to argue for a more favorable outcome.
We Can Help You Calculate the Value of Your Compensation Claim
The attorneys at George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers understand the frustrations you face when dealing with the aftermath of an accident caused by another’s negligence. To find out how we can help, call for a free consultation at (888) 612-7001. Meanwhile, if you would like to review what former clients have to say about our services, please check our testimonials page.