There is no way to determine the average settlement for broken ribs in a car accident. Too many variables come into play when evaluating the worth of your claim. Your injuries and the treatment you require play a central role in its potential value. Still, each accident is unique, making the settlement value dependent on the facts of the individual case.
Working with an attorney can help you better understand what a fair settlement would look like and what you need to do to get it. A personal injury law firm can handle the claims process for you and fight for an appropriate payout based on your damages.
Broken Ribs Often Require a Long, Painful Recovery
Unfortunately, broken ribs do not have a ready-made repair. It takes time for the body to heal, and you will likely need to follow your doctor’s instructions for rest and icing the area until you recover.
When you see a doctor, they will use a hands-on examination along with medical imaging to identify rib fractures, collapsed lungs, or other complications. Doctors regularly use x-rays, computerized tomography (CT) scans, or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies to diagnose broken ribs and rule out other injuries.
According to the Mayo Clinic, it generally takes about six weeks for broken ribs to heal if you do not have any complications or require treatment for related injuries. Your doctor will:
- Restrict your activities
- Recommend icing your side or chest regularly
- Prescribe pain relief
- Teach you how to do deep breathing exercises to reduce the risk of developing pneumonia
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Your Settlement Could Include Compensation Related to Your Injuries
When you pursue compensation through an insurance claim, the money you demand from the at-fault driver will depend greatly on your injuries. Their severity and necessary treatment can dramatically alter the value of your settlement, thus making it nearly impossible to determine an average figure. Related expenses and losses include:
- Medical bills, including diagnosis and treatment
- Future care needs
- Lost income for your time away from work
- Pain and suffering
Other Damages That Could Affect the Value of Your Claim
While your broken ribs will play a significant role in the value of your case, you likely suffered damages unrelated to the injuries as well. These could include the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle, rental car costs, or paying for parking at your appointments. You can recover all these damages as a part of your claim.
Shared Fault and Your Car Accident Claim
If you shared fault in your crash or the insurer or at-fault driver accuses you of contributing to the accident, you might want to speak with a car accident attorney before filing your claim. Allegations of contributory negligence can significantly hurt the value of your settlement.
Courts in Alabama could bar you from recovering compensation of any kind if you contributed to causing the accident in any way. The Alabama Supreme Court confirmed this rule in Golden v. McCurry (1980).
Other states allow you to get compensation but reduce how much you can recover based on your percentage of fault:
- In Arkansas, the state bars recovery for drivers over 51 percent at fault under Ark. Code Ann. § 16-64-122.
- Under La. Civ. Code Art. 2323, anyone involved in a crash can sue in Louisiana.
- The Mississippi law, Miss. Code Ann. § 11-7-15, is almost identical. Anyone can sue regardless of shared fault.
Do I Need an Attorney to Recover a Settlement for Broken Ribs?
There is no legal requirement that you work with or consult a law firm before agreeing to a settlement in your car accident case. The insurance company must work with you in good faith or risk facing legal action themselves. However, many advantages exist for letting a lawyer manage your claim by:
- Protecting your rights
- Managing communications
- Investigating the crash and gathering evidence
- Identifying the liable parties
- Defending you from accusations of shared fault
- Valuing your claim
- Negotiating with the insurance company
- Filing suit if necessary to recover just compensation
There are deadlines for how quickly you must begin the legal process in car accident cases. Each state sets its statute of limitations. Your attorney will meet this deadline if a lawsuit becomes necessary in your case.
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The Team From Morris Bart, LLC Will Review Your Car Accident Case for Free
The Morris Bart law firm operates 16 locations in the Gulf South, representing collision victims in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Arkansas. We provide complimentary care reviews to those within our service area, so victims better understand their case and legal options. We are a contingency-fee law firm.
Call (800) 537-8185 and let us go to work on your case today.
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