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Protecting Yourself: A Comprehensive Personal Injury Settlement Guide

Written by Tom Crosley
Mar 11, 2022 Catastrophic Personal Injury
  1. 1. What is a Settlement in a Personal Injury Case?
  2. 2. What is the Average Settlement Payout for Personal Injury Cases?
  3. 3. What Can Affect My Settlement’s Value?
  4. 4. How Long is the Claim Process?
  5. 5. Crosley Law: Personal Injury Lawyer Defending Injury Victims in San Antonio

When you’re going through a tough recovery after an injury and facing an uncertain future, the last thing you want to worry about is whether you’re getting cheated by your insurance company.

Filing a personal injury claim can be stressful and frustrating enough on its own. When you finally see a settlement offer, it can be extremely tempting to just take it and put it all behind you. But how do you know if the settlement you’re being offered is fair, or will cover your long-term needs?

By hiring an experienced personal injury attorney, you can pass the burden of filing your claim onto someone who knows the tricks your insurance company may use to cheat you out of a fair settlement. At Crosley Law, we know the impact an injury can have on you and your loved ones. Let us relieve the stress by taking the lead on filing your claim, communicating with your insurance, and fighting back against unfair settlements—all so you can focus on getting better.

In this article, we will provide an overview of what to expect from the personal injury settlement process, including timeline, average settlement value, and what may influence your case’s outcome.

What is a Settlement in a Personal Injury Case?

At the most basic level, a settlement is a negotiated sum of money that the at-fault party (through their insurance company) pays you to make your claim go away. By offering you a settlement before trial, the insurance company is attempting to avoid any further legal action.

However, the insurance company is still a business and will try to protect its bottom line rather than prioritizing your wellbeing. They will have no shame about offering you a settlement that’s far less than what your case is worth if they think it will save them money in the long run.

There are two common types of settlements:

  • Lump-sum: An agreed-upon single payment given to you by your insurance company soon after negotiations
  • Structured: Payments of varying size and frequency that are given over time based on your settlement’s value and terms.

Regardless of what type of settlement you get, it is important to remember that by accepting a settlement, you are closing your claim for good. Once a settlement is accepted, there will be no opportunity for you to go back and get more money for your injuries. So, make sure not to accept any offer you consider to be unfair or insufficient. Take any future costs that your injury could cause into account when evaluating your settlement’s value.

Related: Insurance Settlement FAQs

Regardless of what type of settlement you get, it is important to remember that by accepting a settlement, you are closing your claim for good. Once a settlement is accepted, there will be no opportunity for you to go back and get more money for your injuries. So, make sure not to accept any offer you consider to be unfair or insufficient. Take any future costs that your injury could cause into account when evaluating your settlement’s value.

What is the Average Settlement Payout for Personal Injury Cases?

The average settlement value for a typical mild-to-moderate personal injury claim can range from $3,000 to $75,000. However, under the right circumstances, very serious personal injury and wrongful death cases can produce settlements ranging into the millions of dollars.

That said, even seemingly simple and straightforward person injury claims will usually have many factors that affect the outcome of your settlement offer, so you need to be sure to be careful while filing. All claims require extensive evidence as well, so collect any and all proof of the severity of your injuries.

Related: When Should I Agree to a Structured Settlement?

The average settlement value for a typical mild-to-moderate personal injury claim can range from $3,000 to $75,000.

What Can Affect My Settlement’s Value?

No two personal injury cases are exactly the same, which means personal injury settlement amounts can vary significantly depending on the specific circumstances. Working with an attorney to accurately calculate the value of your case before filing a claim can help you avoid accepting a settlement that’s too low.

Some of the variables to keep in mind include:

Ability to Establish Fault

If you have a straightforward case and it will be easy for you to prove that the other party was at fault, the person who caused the injury (or that person’s insurance policy) will be more eager to settle. While it can be difficult to wait for a settlement if medical bills are piling up, take the time you need to gather information and protect yourself.

Damage Types and Severity

You should also know the different types of damages you can request as part of your settlement. Economic damages include, but aren’t limited to, lost wages, medical bills, property damage, and the costs of transportation to and from medical visits. General damages include pain and suffering, humiliation, and mental anguish. Pain and suffering can make a big impact on the value of your case, like in the case of Kaegan’s TBI claim.

Your settlement should include all the types of damages available to you, because once you sign the settlement you will likely give up your right to recover for those losses. The value of your injury will depend on the nature and extent of your injuries, your wage loss, and how long the injury can be expected to last. Be sure to gather as much evidence as possible to help calculate and estimate the impact of your injury.

Available Insurance Coverage

Most insurance policies have a cap on how much they will pay out to injured claimants. In Texas, for example, individual drivers are only required to carry a minimum of $30,000 in liability coverage per person and $60,000 per accident. On the other hand, a trucking company may carry six or seven figures’ worth of commercial vehicle liability insurance to protect their assets from lawsuits.

Once you’ve reached the limit of all available insurance policies that cover you, it may be difficult to get any more out of an at-fault party. Your attorney can help you identify any potential sources of insurance coverage that may be available to you.

Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer

A good personal injury or accident attorney will be aware of personal injury settlement guidelines and can help you negotiate your settlement successfully. Experienced attorneys like those at Crosley Law Firm can help you figure out the value of your injury for settlement purposes during a case evaluation.

An experienced personal injury attorney can help you gather and analyze evidence, negotiate with the insurance company, file your claim, and even fight on your behalf if the insurance company refuses to offer you a fair settlement. Your attorney can make sure you get the maximum amount you deserve, like in the case of Michael and Justin.

How Long is the Claim Process?

The average length of a personal injury claim can vary drastically depending on the details of your injury, how well the claim is filed, and how quickly your insurance company chooses to respond.

Many claimants believe that the claim process will be quick, but this is a common misconception. While some small and simple personal injury claims can be settled within a few days or weeks, most will take months to a year or more to resolve—during which time you and your loved ones will be under financial pressure and collecting medical expenses. (Insurance companies are not shy about using these stalling tactics for leverage.)

The average amount of time it takes for claimants to get their settlement is . This time can vary based on the success of your case, any negotiations, and even if your claim is denied. Claims that are denied tend to take much less time but can involve a lengthy personal injury lawsuit process if you choose to fight your denial.

Hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer can often speed up the process by making sure your claim is handled efficiently. That being said, if you can only choose one or the other, it’s much better to get a fair settlement than a fast settlement. Your attorney can help you keep the bill collectors away while your personal injury case is still open.

Crosley Law: Personal Injury Lawyer Defending Injury Victims in San Antonio

Our team of personal injury lawyers are ready to help you through the personal injury claim process. At Crosley Law, we provide the high-quality, cutting-edge work you can expect from an experienced personal injury law firm. We know the tricks that your insurance company uses to deny most personal injury cases and are here to teach you how to avoid these pitfalls, file a successful claim, build an attorney-client relationship you can trust, and get you the fair personal injury settlement you deserve.

If you or a loved one have been injured and are unsure what to do next, call Crosley Law today at (210) LAW-3000 or fill out our simple contact form to schedule your free consultation with a personal injury attorney.

References

David, G. How Much Can I Get for My Personal Injury Case and How Long Will It Take? NOLO. How Much Can I Get for My Personal Injury Case and How Long Will It Take? | Nolo

Adam, K. What’s the Average Amount For a Personal Injury Settlement? Adam S. Kutner Personal Injury Attorneys. Average Personal Injury Settlement Amounts | Adam S. Kutner, Injury Attorneys (askadamskutner.com)

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

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