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Car Accidents and Broken Bones: How Much Is My Case Worth?

Mar 02, 2021 Car Accidents
  1. 1. Look Out for These Common Broken Bones After a Car Crash
  2. 2. What Can I Expect After a Bone Breaks?
  3. 3. How Much Is My Broken Bone Worth in a Personal Injury Claim?
  4. 4. Crosley Law: Demanding Fair Compensation for People With Broken Bones

Broken bones are common during car accidents. The forces during a collision can shatter bones in our back, legs, pelvis, and other areas, causing pain and severe limitations. And while some broken bones heal relatively quickly, these injuries can also become complicated and lead to permanent disability.

Our team of experienced personal injury lawyers helps people recover from crash-related broken bones and other life-changing injuries. Here, we explain the essentials of an injury claim involving a broken bone and outline factors that might affect your case’s settlement value.

Look Out for These Common Broken Bones After a Car Crash

During a car wreck or motorcycle accident, your body experiences dramatic forces, like acceleration and deceleration. For example, you could feel these forces when an airbag strikes your body, your car hits a guardrail, or another vehicle collides with yours. Sometimes these forces cause bones to break.

Our bones aren’t as rigid and rock-like as we think they are. In fact, our bones can bend and flex when force is applied. But they do have their limits. When the forces from a collision are too great, our bones can crack, break, or shatter.

Common fractures involve the following body parts:

  • Back and neck
  • Collarbone (clavicle)
  • Hips and pelvis
  • Leg (tibia, fibula, and femur)
  • Ribs and sternum
  • Skull and face

While some broken bones are quickly identified, due to their severity, others take time to diagnose. For example, if you have a hairline fracture, you might experience some pain and swelling, but not the severe symptoms associated with a more dramatic break.

What Can I Expect After a Bone Breaks?

On average, it takes more than a month for a broken bone to heal. Your recovery will depend on many factors. First, the severity and complexity of your fracture will be a major factor. There are many types of broken bones:

  • Avulsion: During the fracture, ligaments, muscles, and other soft tissues were pulled away from the bone, taking a piece of bone with them. These injuries are very painful and sometimes require surgery.
  • Comminuted: Your bone is broken into at least three pieces. These fractures are much more difficult to treat and almost always need surgery.
  • Compound or open: Some of the bone has pierced through your skin, causing an open wound, increasing your risk of infection.
  • Displaced: The bone has moved out of place and must be realigned.
  • Greenstick: The bone bends and breaks on one side, but not the other. This kind of fracture is more common in children, due to their pliable bones.
  • Non-displaced: The bone is broken but remains in its normal alignment.
  • Oblique: The break runs in a diagonal across the bone.
  • Spiral: The fracture has a spiral shape and runs around the bone.
  • Transverse: The fracture runs in straight line.

Your doctors will recommend different treatment options, depending on your type of fracture and its severity. For example, comminuted fractures often require surgery. And if you have an open fracture, your doctor will likely prescribe antibiotics to help prevent infection.

Most fractures require some form of splinting, either with an immobilizer or a cast. More serious breaks might require external fixation or an open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF), where doctors implant pins or screws in the broken bone and use hardware to stabilize it during the healing process.

You may also need physical therapy after the bone is healed, since most people lose strength and flexibility while they’re in a cast and immobilized.

However, some broken bones take much longer to heal. Occasionally, the bone will not mesh back together, causing a nonunion. This complication typically requires additional surgery and intensive medical care. Other times, people experience infections, chronic pain, and other issues during and after a severe fracture.

In these cases, you might find yourself out of work for an extended time—and you’ll need help from an experienced personal injury lawyer to get the support and compensation you deserve.

How Much Is My Broken Bone Worth in a Personal Injury Claim?

Because your injury is unique, there’s not a simple, set formula for calculating your damages. However, you might be entitled to compensation for:

  • Hospital and medical bills
  • Medications and medical equipment (like crutches and wheelchairs)
  • Physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • Lost income and wage-earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress

Several factors will impact your claim’s value, including the severity of your injuries, the amount of insurance coverage that applies to your claim, and the circumstances surrounding your motor vehicle accident.

When you work with a car accident attorney, they will identify all of the insurance policies that apply to your claim. Then, they will carefully calculate all of your damages, helping you get a fair settlement.

Now, let’s explore two of our clients’ claims for broken bones.

Several factors will impact your claim’s value, including the severity of your injuries, the amount of insurance coverage that applies to your claim, and the circumstances surrounding your motor vehicle accident.

Multiple Fractures Put Kelly B.’s Career on Hold

Kelly had just finished her general surgery residency and was about to start a new job. However, her bright future was suddenly put on hold when she was involved in a multi-car pileup. When she woke up, Kelly was in the hospital. The trauma doctors told her that she’d broken both her leg and wrist—and that she needed two surgeries.

Because her broken leg and wrist were on the same side, Kelly couldn’t use crutches and relied on a wheelchair. A fiercely independent woman, she had to move in with family while she healed and had to delay her medical practice.

Our car accident lawyers helped her move forward, negotiating $1,005,000 in total settlements for Kelly. After paying her attorney’s fees and case costs, Kelly recovered $587,736.24 for her medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost income.

Related: 18-Wheeler Turns a Surgeon’s Life Upside-Down

Joseph Struggles to Get the Treatment He Needs for a Broken Collarbone

Joseph was riding in an SUV during a severe rainstorm. When traffic came to a sudden stop, an 18-wheeler rear-ended the vehicle at a high speed. The crash caused a four-car pileup and Joseph said they got knocked around like pinballs. During the crash, he suffered a displaced fracture in his collarbone. He needed emergency surgery, but he did not have health insurance.

Unsure what to do, Joseph started calling lawyers, and one of them referred him to Crosley Law. With our help, Joseph got the surgery he needed—and the settlement he deserved.

Our investigation uncovered that the truck was driving too fast for the conditions. With help from accident reconstruction experts, the big rig’s GPS data, and other evidence, we forced the truck driver to admit that he had caused the crash. In the end, the insurance companies offered a $125,000 settlement. After attorney’s fees and costs, Joseph received $68,354.58.

RELATED: Crosley Law Helps Victim With Fractured Collarbone After Truck Wreck

Crosley Law: Demanding Fair Compensation for People With Broken Bones

At Crosley Law, we’re proud of our track record of success and commitment to our clients. Our law firm takes a compassionate and cutting-edge approach to personal injury law, helping people with broken bones get the answers and compensation they deserve.

If a reckless driver injured you or someone you love, we want to help. You can schedule a free consultation, by calling 210-LAW-3000 | 210-529-3000 or filling out our website’s easy contact form.

The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.

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