A car accident can blindside victims. Most people do not have the funds readily available to pay for expensive medical bills, property repairs and missed wages. Instead, they rely on insurance companies to provide coverage for these accident-related losses. If you were recently in a car accident in San Antonio, understanding what you could potentially receive in a car accident settlement could help you plan for the future. The exact answer, however, will depend on the details of your case.
Average Case Results in Texas
In Texas, the average car accident settlement amount insurance companies offer is around $21,000. This amount will serve to cover the victim’s medical expenses and property damage repairs after a collision. More valuable claims could receive closer to $35,000 in damages. Insurance settlements will fall within the policyholder’s coverage limits. Injured parties in Texas will seek reimbursement from the at-fault party’s insurance company. The settlement amount offered will vary according to numerous factors.
- Severity of personal injuries
- Costs of past and future medical expenses
- Point of maximum medical improvement
- Serious losses such as wrongful death
- The victim’s emotional pain and suffering
- The value of the damaged vehicle
- Extent of damages and costs of repairs
- The price to replace a totaled vehicle
The average settlement amount for car accident cases in Texas might not accurately reflect what your case is worth. Only a car accident attorney can give you a precise settlement prediction based on the unique facts of your case. Discussing your economic and noneconomic losses with an attorney could give you a better idea of the value of your claim. Then, your lawyer can go to work fighting for fair results on your behalf.
Types of Damages Recoverable
Even if your particular car accident settlement does not match the average amount in Texas, it could have the same potential categories for recoverable damages. Damages refer to both the losses you sustained and the types of monetary awards you could receive through an insurance claim. Texas civil laws enable crash survivors or the loved ones of the deceased to file claims for three main types of damages.
- Economic damages. Your insurance claim should include a description of every out-of-pocket expense you had because of the car accident. This can include medical bills, car repairs, rental cars, transportation costs, lost wages, lost capacity to earn, legal fees and court costs. Add up the values of all economic damages the car accident cost you, as well as the money you will foreseeably spend in the future.
- Noneconomic damages. Noneconomic damages are intangible losses you and your family suffered because of the crash. You may have experienced physical pain, emotional distress, post-traumatic stress disorder, mental anguish, grief, loss of consortium or lost quality of life. A lawyer can help you assign a numeric value to noneconomic damages. The more severe your injuries, the more these damages could be worth.
- Punitive damages. Some car accident cases may qualify for punitive damage awards. Punitive damages punish the defendant for wrongful acts and gross negligence, such as drunk driving or vehicular homicide. A judge may award punitive damages to a plaintiff during a car accident trial in Texas. Punitive damages have a cap of $200,000 or twice the amount of economic damages plus noneconomic damages (whichever is greater), up to $750,000.
Your car accident settlement could reach six or seven digits depending on the extent of your damages. A catastrophic crash that causes permanent brain damage or another disability, for example, could be worth millions in San Antonio. The state of Texas does not place a cap on any other damages besides punitive in car accident claims. If an insurance company refuses to offer a fair amount, a lawyer can help you take your case to court. The skill of your attorney could reflect the amount of your final car accident settlement or verdict.