The first thing our new clients ask us is how much their car accident case is worth. Baton Rouge auto accident attorneys understand why car accident victims are upset. They also understand that they want to make the other driver pay. However, you must be reasonable when it comes to settling your lawsuit.
Many of them don’t even wait to find out if their insurance claim will be approved. They want to sue the other driver and they want a lot of money. Many of them don’t realize that you can’t collect damages without proving they were injured.
For example, if your total out-of-pocket expenses are $15,000, you can’t sue somebody for a million dollars.
Here, we’ll talk about how much the average car accident case settles for. We’ll also briefly touch on the types of damages you can demand in your case. If you still have questions after reading this article, just give us a call. We’ll answer your questions as best we can. We can even give you an idea of what your case may be worth.
Your Personal Injury Lawyer in Baton Rouge Will Demand Damages
If you have to sue the other driver, you’ll need to file a complaint. In your complaint, you must list any damages you feel you’re entitled to. Before you can demand these damages, however, you must prove that you deserve them. For example, if your medical bills were only $30,000, you can’t demand $300,000 in medical bills. The same is true for property damage. If it only cost $3,000 to fix your car, you can’t demand $15,000 in property damages.
For most car accident lawsuits, you’ll be entitled to some or all of the following types of damages:
Obviously, if you incur medical bills related to your car accident, the defendant should be responsible for them. Your Baton Rouge auto accident attorney will submit copies of your medical bills. This includes any money paid out by your primary health insurance. They’re going to want to be reimbursed.
If your doctor says you need additional medical care in the future, you can include this in your demand.
If your car or SUV needs to be repaired, you can demand reimbursement for this. If your car happens to be totaled in the crash, you can demand fair market value.
You can demand two types of damages for lost income. First, you can demand compensation for any time you missed from work. Second, you can demand compensation for any future lost income you may experience. For example, if you’re no longer able to work because of your injuries, you’ll end up on disability. You can demand the difference between what you will receive on disability compared to what you would’ve earned at work.
Pain and Suffering
Most people who sue for a car accident demand pain and suffering. These damages are meant to compensate victims for any physical or mental anguish they suffered. Your personal injury lawyer in Baton Rouge is going to estimate this amount at three times your medical bills. If your medical bills were $50,000, you’ll demand $150,000 in pain and suffering.
The important thing to remember is that you aren’t going to get your full demand. When you settle your case, you will have to compromise on the total amount. Settlement negotiations involve a give and take. Your lawyer will start out high and the defendant’s lawyer will start out low. Then they will hopefully meet somewhere in the middle.
Why Would Your Personal Injury Lawyer in Baton Rouge Urge You to Settle?
Some people aren’t happy when their Baton Rouge auto accident attorney suggests they settle their case. They feel like they are giving up their chance to see the defendant in court. However, sometimes, this is the best option.
There are a number of benefits to settling your car accident lawsuit. Some of these include:
- You’ll get your money a lot faster if you settle. It can take years to go to trial.
- There’s no guarantee that you’ll win in court. It’s better to walk away with a fair amount than take the chance of losing and getting nothing.
- If you settle, you’ll get your money in a lump sum relatively quickly. Most settlements are paid within thirty days. If you win in court, you may never see a dime. Even if you do, it could be months or years down the road.
- Trials are expensive. You have to remember – any money your Baton Rouge auto accident attorney spends on your case is money you don’t get. You have to reimburse your lawyer for the money they paid in preparation for your lawsuit. If you go to trial, you could end up spending thousands of dollars for no good reason.
What you may not realize is that the defendant is just as eager to settle as you are. They don’t want to take the chance of losing in court either.
What Percentage of Your Total Damages Will You Receive?
It’s fair to wonder how much your total settlement will be. Your settlement isn’t going to be for the full amount. And it’s not possible for any personal injury lawyer in Baton Rouge to give you an exact amount. It all depends on the facts of your case and how things progress with the defendant.
Typically, car accident lawsuits settle anywhere from 50% to 60%. There has to be an incentive for the defendant to settle. Most insurance companies have an internal legal team. You have to expect to compromise during settlement negotiations.
Contact an Experienced Baton Rouge Auto Accident Attorney Today
If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident, you probably suffered some painful injuries. You need to focus on getting better. Your personal injury lawyer in Baton Rouge can handle the legal side of things. To make this happen, you need to call and schedule your free, initial consultation.
The goal is to settle your case. If this can not be done, your lawyer will be ready to fight for you in court. Since you don’t have to pay anything upfront, it’s in your best interest to retain legal counsel right away.