8 Factors That Can Affect How Much Money You Get after a Crash
Posted in Car Accident on September 27, 2018
Most car accident victims have two priorities after their crashes: making sure they and their loved ones get better and finding out how they’ll pay for their accident-related expenses.
The financial hit that an auto accident can cause is often two-fold. In addition to the upfront costs, including medical bills and vehicle repair expenses, victims also may be unable to work for long periods of time. That means no paychecks for themselves and their family members.
However, victims aren’t without recourse after crashes, especially when accidents weren’t their fault. In Tennessee and throughout the U.S., people who are injured through no fault of their own can file claims for compensation against negligent parties. That means drivers who speed, drive while drunk or distracted, or engage in reckless behaviors can be held liable for the expenses incurred by victims when they cause crashes.
The amount of compensation that victims can receive after accidents varies from case to case. There are many factors that influence final payouts, even in fairly cut-and-dry crashes where it seems obvious that one party was at fault and the innocent driver was seriously injured.
Car Accident Compensation Claims Can Be Complicated and Subjective
It’s common for auto accident victims to experience days or even weeks of severe pain, shock, and disbelief over what happened. During this time, victims are often vulnerable, and they can make mistakes that cost themselves money or even the chance to pursue compensation in the first place.
In addition to those potential mistakes, there are other factors you should be aware of that can change how much money you can get from the insurance company. Some of the most common mistakes and circumstances that can impact the dollar figure in your settlement check include:
- The severity of your injuries—A victim who suffers a broken arm in a car accident will be unlikely to receive the same amount of compensation as a victim who is paralyzed or disabled due to spinal injuries or a traumatic brain injury. The insurance company will consider the severity of your injuries when it offers you a settlement, but we’ll make sure the adjusters know that injuries don’t have to be physically disabling to affect quality of life and the ability to work.
- The evidence that proves the other driver was at fault—If the insurance company doesn’t fully believe that the other driver caused the crash, it may be reluctant to pay out any money to you. Our legal team will collect evidence that leaves no doubt about the cause of the crash and the behaviors the other driver engaged in that led to it. We’ll collect police records and even consult experts to create a comprehensive and definitive sequence of events that led to the crash.
- The comprehensiveness of your medical records—Even when victims and their lawyers can prove another driver was at fault for a crash, insurance companies may still balk at paying out settlements due to not believing that injuries and disabilities are crash-related. It’s common for insurers and adjusters to claim that injuries or disabilities were pre-existing. Our lawyers will collect your medical records and get analysis from medical professionals to prove your injuries occurred during the crash.
- The amount of money you’ve lost while you were out of work—For many families, missing even a single paycheck can be devastating. And when you’re recovering from an auto accident injury, weeks and even months can fly by—all of which are unpaid because you’re not on the job. You shouldn’t have to experience financial uncertainty because of a crash that wasn’t your fault. We’ll determine how much money you’ve lost in wages because of your injuries, and we’ll include that information when we send our demand letter to the insurance company.
- The future expenses and lost wages you’ll incur as a result of the accident—For many auto accident victims, getting medical treatment and starting the recovery process is just the beginning of a long and difficult road. If your injuries are severe, you may need additional surgeries and physical rehabilitation to regain mobility and strength. In addition, you may be unable to work the same job you used to work, or your efficiency may be reduced. That can jeopardize your career and your opportunities to succeed. Your car accident may continue to impact you for years to come, but we’ll fight to make sure you’re fairly compensated for it.
- The statements you make to police, the other driver, and the insurance company—Insurance companies are always looking for an advantage or a way out of paying the money that victims should be entitled to receive. One of the ways they accomplish that is by using any and all evidence against victims, including their own words. The adverse insurance company is only worried about saving themselves money and will look to trip you up during calls that they record. When you get our legal team on your side, you won’t have to worry about those potential pitfalls, because we’ll take over all communication with the insurance company.
- The decision to accept the insurance company’s initial settlement offer—In the days or weeks after your crash, the other driver’s insurance company may get in touch with you and offer you a quick and small While the amount may be tempting—especially if medical bills are piling up and you’re out of work—it’s almost always a ploy to get out of paying you the full amount you deserve. That’s because accepting an initial settlement offer often includes a clause that prevents you from seeking additional compensation, and there’s a good chance you’ll need it when the true cost of your accident is calculated.
- The experience, resources, and determination of your lawyer—There are many car accident attorneys in Nashville and throughout Middle Tennessee. Some of those law firms treat clients more like numbers than people. They operate on a quantity over quality principle, and that means victims are often advised to accept settlements that aren’t enough to pay for their full accident-related expenses. With a dedicated law firm on your side, you won’t have to worry about being viewed as just another payday for your lawyer. Instead, you’ll get personalized care and attention every step of the way.
At Matt Hardin Law, our Nashville auto accident lawyers know how important it is for victims like you to get maximum compensation. That’s why we always go the extra mile when building claims for our clients. The insurance company is always well prepared for a fight, but so we are.
With 30 years of experience getting settlements for people who were hurt in crashes, you can count on our track record of success and our dedication to getting the job done. Call today at (615) 200-1111 or complete a free online consultation.