You’ll find numbers bandied about on the internet purporting to state with certainty what the average settlement for a whiplash car accident is. However, those numbers will not help you determine the possible value of your case. Why? Because each collision claim depends mainly on the damages suffered by the victim and other facts of the case.
Working with a personal injury law firm often offers a better understanding of how much you could recover through the claims process. A car accident attorney will handle your insurance claim, including placing a fair settlement value on your case and demanding justice in the form of an appropriate payout.
Explaining Whiplash and How It Affects Collision Victims
Whiplash is an injury that affects the soft tissues of the neck, upper back, and shoulders. The head whips back and forth during a collision, moving these muscles, ligaments, and tendons beyond their normal range of motion, leading to strains, sprains, and tears.
In the hours and days following the crash, a whiplash sufferer begins to develop symptoms such as headaches, a stiff neck, pain, and loss of range of motion. Tingling or numbness running down the arms, dizziness, and fatigue are also possible.
Whiplash Affects Crash Victims in Many Ways that a Settlement Can Address
When someone suffers whiplash, it can disturb their everyday life for several weeks or longer because they:
- Miss significant time from work
- Cannot participate in activities and hobbies
- Develop a chronic condition that leaves them unable to return to their previous position at work
- Must hire others to handle things previously done at home, such as mowing the lawn
- Experience severe pain and suffering
In addition to these expenses and losses, victims have medical bills to pay and car repair bills to manage. These costs, especially when combined with lost wages, sometimes become overwhelming, which is why financial recovery through an insurance settlement is so important.
For a free legal consultation, call (800) 537-8185
Other Factors that Affect the Value of a Car Accident Claim
The injuries, expenses, and losses incurred by the victim play a considerable role in determining the value of a collision claim. However, these factors could also come into play:
- The facts of the case, such as when a driver acted intentionally
- Whether the victim contributed to causing the collision in any way
- Any caps on damages set by state law
- Whether the victim met the filing deadline for their claim
- The maximum payout of the at-fault party’s insurance policy
Accurately valuing a whiplash claim is not easy. It is sometimes challenging to prove the severity of soft tissue injuries, especially when it comes to the pain and suffering you endured. At the same time, you will need a working knowledge of personal injury law in your state to know if you considered all the necessary factors when calculating the settlement value of your claim.
Consider Long-Term Implications of Whiplash Injuries in Your Settlement
Whiplash can cause lasting pain and permanent damage in some cases. Unfortunately, there is no real way to determine who sustains permanent injuries or why. An in-depth expose by The Atlantic called whiplash “a medical mystery.”
However, you could face additional expenses and concerns if you develop chronic pain after a whiplash injury. You could then have long-term pain management needs, a disability, and loss of enjoyment in activities.
A personal injury attorney well-versed in whiplash injury claims can help you put a fair and accurate offer on the table when they enter negotiations with an insurance company. They will fight for the compensation that falls within the range they determine reasonably represents your current and future needs. They can also take your case to trial if necessary.
Will an Attorney Sue the at-Fault Driver and Make Me Go to Court?
Most car accident claims do not go to trial. Instead, the victim or their attorney negotiates a settlement with the at-fault driver or their insurer, and there’s no need to sue. However, you might want a law firm on your side that will do what it takes to secure fair compensation for you, even if that means filing suit.
There are deadlines in these cases, although exceptions can mean you have less time. In general, you would have:
- Two years in Alabama per Ala. Code § 6-2-38
- Three years in Arkansas per Ark. Code Ann. § 16-56-105
- One year in Louisiana per La. Civ. Code Art. 3492
- Three years in Mississippi per Miss. Code Ann. § 15-1-49
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Morris Bart, LLC Reviews Whiplash Accident Claims for Free
The Morris Bart law office near you can discuss your legal options with you today for free. You can learn more about the areas we serve and how our contingency fee services work. We will also explain your legal options and rights as an accident victim.
Call (800) 537-8185 now to speak with a team member about your crash case.
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