How much money should you expect to receive in a settlement if you sustained a concussion in a car accident? Settlement amounts depend on the type of accident, the severity of the victim’s injuries, and the victim’s estimated future costs. As a result, settlement amounts vary significantly.
It is difficult to pinpoint the average value of an injury lawsuit involving a concussion since settlements vary widely.
Because settlement sizes range so significantly, it is no wonder that many car accident victims have questions about what to expect after a devastating collision. This blog post should help clarify some of the unknowns. We will review some information you need to know about concussions, settlements, and how an experienced car accident attorney can help you fight for the compensation you deserve.
Symptoms of Head Injuries
Car crash victims could sustain anything from mild concussions to severe traumatic brain injuries.
Some of the more common symptoms of head injuries include:
- Vomiting or dizziness
- Loss of consciousness lasting several minutes to hours
- Seizures or convulsions
- Confusion, amnesia, or personality changes
- Slurred speech
- Feeling light-headed
- Ringing in the ears
- Dilated pupils
- Clear fluids draining from the ears or the nose
Symptoms from concussions are usually temporary. However, even mild concussions can cause long-term problems such as constant headaches and issues with memory, concentration, balance, coordination, and personality changes.
How to Seek the Money You Need After a Concussion?
If you sustained a concussion in a car crash because of another person’s wrongful actions, you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries. You can seek compensation from the at-fault party or their insurance company. Typically, insurance companies settle car accident concussion cases out of court.
If you accept money in a settlement, you agree to cancel any pending lawsuits in return. Most car accident cases settle since the litigation process is expensive and time-consuming.
A car accident lawyer with experience in handling concussion cases can help you navigate the settlement process. They can negotiate with the insurance company’s representatives, ensuring that they do not ignore your injuries or waste time processing your claim. Settlement negotiations generally start before the victim files a lawsuit and can continue after the filing.
Once you and your lawyer accept a settlement offer, you cannot later file a claim for more compensation, even if you have additional expenses from the same accident. Therefore, your lawyer must negotiate aggressively to ensure that you get the money you need.
If you sustained a concussion injury in a car accident, you should reach out to an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. A lawyer will negotiate on your behalf to pursue an offer that covers all of your current and future needs.
Factors That Can Affect a Concussion Injury Settlement
No legal professional can tell you exactly how much your car accident claim is worth because there are just too many factors that can affect the value of your claim.
These factors include:
- The severity of the Injury: Even a mild concussion can upend a victim’s life by wrecking their ability to work, maintain relationships, and live their planned life. Consequently, a victim with a severe injury might need more compensation to pay for losses than if they sustained a minor head injury.
- Necessary Medical Treatments: The medical treatments that a victim needs also affect settlement amounts. If a victim needs ongoing physical or occupational therapy for years after the accident, they may need more significant compensation. Similarly, if they need assistive medical devices installed in their home, they may need more money to pay for those devices.
- The Victim’s Characteristics: The victim’s occupation, age, and prior medical history can affect the overall settlement value.
- Number of Defendants: If numerous parties caused the motor vehicle accident, each defendant might be required to pay a portion of the victim’s losses.
- Defendant’s Conduct: If the wrongdoer’s conduct was intentional or malicious, the victim’s lawyer could leverage the possibility of punitive damages during the settlement negotiation process.
- The At-Fault Party’s Liability: If it is apparent that the at-fault party caused the car accident, the settlement offer may be higher. On the other hand, if the other driver or insurance company disputes fault, they may be less likely to offer the victim a fair settlement.
- Other Factors: Additional factors that can influence a settlement’s value include the credibility of the evidence, the extent of a victim’s pain and suffering, and whether the victim needs replacement services like child care.
An experienced car accident lawyer can review your case to see which factors might play a role. They can use the information you give them to estimate how much your concussion case may be worth, and they can help you negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company.
Types of Financial Damages You Can Pursue in a Concussion Car Accident Lawsuit
If you sustained a concussion in a car crash and the insurance company refuses to make you a fair offer, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit. In a personal injury lawsuit, your lawyer may request the following types of compensation:
These damages are easily quantifiable and measurable losses, including:
- Past and current medical expenses related to doctor visits, hospital stay, ambulance services, prescription medications, surgeries, and other medical treatments you require after the accident
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Personal property damages, including replacement expenses and repair costs
- Domestic replacement services, including child care, cleaning, or grocery shopping services
- Rehabilitative therapy, including physical and occupational therapy
- Other out-of-pocket expenses
These damages are subjective losses. Because these losses are not easy to quantify, they are often harder to prove.
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional anguish
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Reputation Loss
- Loss of compassion
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Unlike the other damages which compensate a victim for their losses, punitive damages exist to punish the at-fault party for their egregious actions. They deter others from engaging in similar activities. However, a court only awards punitive damages to the victim under certain circumstances.
For example, in California, the injured party’s lawyer must show that the defendant was guilty of malice, fraud, or oppression through clear and convincing evidence.
How Long Do You Have to File a Lawsuit After a Car Accident Causes a Concussion?
A statute of limitations sets the amount of time a person has to file a lawsuit. If you do not file your claim within the allotted period, you may not be able to file a lawsuit to regain your losses.
Each state has its statute of limitations, and time limits vary on a state-by-state basis. For instance, you only have two years from the date of the car crash to file your case in California. You may have even less time to file your case if exceptions to the rule apply.
Therefore, you should speak with a skilled car accident lawyer in your area as soon as possible. A lawyer will review the facts of your case and determine when you must file a legal claim. They can also ensure that your legal motions and documents are prepared correctly and filed with the appropriate court before time expires.
Work With an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer and Fight for the Compensation You Need
Before you can collect compensation for your concussion injury and the other losses you sustained in a car crash, you must show that another person’s wrongful actions caused the accident. However, gathering evidence and preparing legal arguments to prove your case is complex and challenging work.
A car accident lawyer can ease your burden by managing the legal process.
When necessary, a lawyer can:
- Review your accident with you in detail, evaluate your legal claim, and determine whether you have a viable case.
- Answer your questions, provide legal support, and advise you of your legal options.
- Thoroughly investigate your car crash and secure the evidence to prove what happened.
- Hire expert witnesses like accident reconstructionists, doctors, financial specialists, and even engineers to validate your claim.
- Handle negotiations with the insurance company and fight for a fair settlement offer.
- Proceed to trial if the insurance company refuses to negotiate.
If a car crash disrupts your life by causing your debilitating concussion, do not wait any longer to get the legal help you need. Instead, contact an experienced and trusted car accident lawyer for a free case evaluation and determine how much your concussion case might be worth.