In Alabama, the average payout in a personal injury case is between $3,000 and $10,000. However, some settlements are worth millions, causing the median figure to be around $50,000.
When you file a personal injury lawsuit, you expect to get maximum compensation for your damages. However, the size of the settlement depends on a variety of factors. The high integrity of your case doesn’t always guarantee a high payout.
To make sure you have a chance of obtaining fair compensation, consider hiring a personal injury lawyer. An experienced legal team from Morris Bart can fight for a settlement you deserve.
Factors that Affect Personal Injury Settlements in Alabama
Two similar personal injury cases can lead to different settlement amounts. These factors can have an effect on the final figure.
The Extent of Your Injuries
Extensive injuries lead to longer treatments, higher medical bills, and time-consuming recovery. For example, catastrophic injuries such as spinal cord injuries or skull fractures could lead to a permanent disability. In these cases, you could seek compensation for:
- Medical treatment
- Recovery therapy
- Household services
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
If your injuries come with serious or permanent consequences for your life and wellbeing, you can seek higher compensation. Meanwhile, minor injuries like broken bones or slight whiplash could lead to lower settlements.
Amount and Quality of Evidence
Evidence is key to proving how much money you are entitled to. For example, if you sustain a serious head injury and want to be compensated, you would need to collect:
- Medical bills
- Doctors’ reports
- Incident reports
- Witness statements
The more evidence you can provide to prove the extent of your injury, the easier it will be to convince the insurance company that you need a higher compensation. That’s why it’s imperative to start collecting evidence right after the accident. With time, some evidence gets lost while witnesses’ memories fade. If you wait too long, the strength of your case decreases, taking the settlement amount down with it.
Ideally, you need to contact a personal injury attorney from the site of the accident to get advice about evidence collection. The next best option is to call a lawyer within several days after the accident. The earlier you start collecting evidence, the better chance you have of maintaining its quality.
Expert Witness Testimonies
While it can be easy to back economic damages by presenting bills and reports, non-economic damages are harder to prove. Meanwhile, non-economic damages can increase your settlement substantially.
To demonstrate pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of consortium, and other physical and emotional damage, you would need to hire expert witnesses. Usually, these witnesses are medical professionals who can testify to the extent of your anguish. Additionally, these witnesses can predict which economic and non-economic damages you are likely to incur in the future.
The quality of expert witness testimony has a direct effect on the size of your settlement. That’s why it’s imperative to find qualified witnesses. A personal injury attorney can help you hire the right witnesses and obtain their testimonies.
Alabama is a contributory negligence state. This means that even if you are 1% responsible for causing your injuries, you can’t recover any damages.
For example, driver A runs a red light and hits driver B who is speeding. The judge decides that driver A is 90% responsible for the injuries while driver B is 10% responsible. In this case, driver B can’t recover any damages.
If you think that you may be partially responsible for your injuries, don’t dismiss your chances of obtaining compensation. With an experienced personal injury attorney, it may be possible to prove the absence of your negligence or play the wanton card.
Wanton behavior is reckless conduct. For example, if driver A was under the influence, they can’t use contributory negligence as a defense.
The Expertise of Your Attorney
Personal injury cases are rarely straightforward. While you can get a settlement without hiring an attorney, it probably won’t be a fair one. Proving your case to the insurance company or the court requires legal expertise and experience.
A personal injury lawyer can:
- Conduct an investigation
- Uncover evidence
- Speak to witnesses
- Hire expert witnesses
- File all documents correctly and on time
- Negotiate with the insurance company
- Represent you in court
Each step of the personal injury case has an effect on the amount you can recover. A slight mistake may not break your case but could lower your chances of getting a reasonable amount.
A personal injury attorney can evaluate your chances of getting a high settlement. Consulting a legal professional doesn’t just help you get an idea of how much you can get but also increases your chances of obtaining fair compensation.
For a free legal consultation, call 800-537-8185
Negotiating a Higher Settlement
If you are unhappy with the amount the insurance company or the defendant is offering, you don’t have to settle. Your attorney can evaluate your chances of getting a higher compensation if you continue fighting for your money.
Regardless of the extent of your damages, insurance companies will work hard to minimize the payout. The right approach to negotiations could increase the settlement. If you are still unhappy with the figure, you can proceed to fight for your money in court.
While the majority of personal injury cases end in a settlement, some of them play out in court and end in a verdict. To make sure the verdict brings you the expected results, you may want to hire an attorney.
Consult an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney Today
The settlement amount for personal injury in Alabama varies from thousands to millions of dollars. If you’d like to find out how much your case is worth, consider contacting a personal injury attorney.
The legal team from Morris Bart can evaluate your case for free and help you get the money you deserve.
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