If you have been involved in a car accident, once you are done treating your injuries, your first question may be: How much can I get? Obviously, you want to be able to obtain the compensation that will cover the costs of your medical care, vehicle damage, lost wages, and other losses. But how much can you realistically expect to receive?
The answer is not cut and dry. There are many factors that affect the value of a car accident case. Here are several to consider:
Amount of Damages
The amount of compensation is primarily based on economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages refer to damages that have monetary value, such as medical bills, lost wages, and property damage. Non-economic damages refer to damages that cannot be easily calculated such as pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life.
If the injured party is partly at fault, this can affect their compensation. New York is a pure comparative negligence state. This means that even if the injured party is 99 percent at fault, they can still recover compensation. However, the amount will be reduced based on their percentage of fault. For example, if the Plaintiff is awarded $100,000 at trial, but is 50 percent at fault, they will receive only $50,000.
There are other factors that can affect compensation. For example, if the liable party caused the accident on purpose or was driving recklessly (such as speeding or driving while intoxicated), then the victim may be able to seek punitive damages.
Witnesses and strong evidence can help increase your settlement amount. On the other hand, if you have pre-existing medical conditions and become injured, this can possibly lower your amount. If the case goes to court before a jury, then the likeability of either party can affect the outcome as well.
Average Settlement Amounts
Given these factors, there are some monetary guidelines that can help you predict how much money you can receive in a car accident settlement. For example, a crash that caused minor injuries such as whiplash soft tissue injuries can net between $10,000 and $25,000. However other damages such as unreimbursed lost wages may increase the total amount of compensation that you are entitled to receive. Injuries that require surgery are often times paid higher and can range from $50,000 to $1,000,000 or more, pre-trial, depending on the severity and extent of the injury involved. Verdicts at trial vary widely.
Spinal injuries that require surgery may result in settlement amounts of $1,000,000 or more. Brain injuries that result in some sort of dysfunction may be paid in the $100,000 to $500,000 range, depending on the severity and permanency. However, a catastrophic brain injury that permanently impairs a person and requires daily assistance can result in settlements in the millions of dollars. The same goes for paralysis.
Contact a New York Car Accident Attorney Today
Car accident settlement amounts can vary widely, depending on the injuries involved. In general, the greater your injuries, the greater your compensation amount.
To maximize your compensation, you need aggressive legal representation. Seek help from New York car accident attorney Michael J. Redenburg, Esq. P.C. He can assess your case and help you get top dollar for your damages. To schedule a free consultation today, call (212) 518-2095 or fill out the online form.