Car accident victims are often left dealing with medical bills, property damage, and other financial losses. According to the US Department of Transportation, the annual economic cost of car accidents in Arkansas is over $2.3 billion.
If you were injured in an Arkansas car accident, you may be wondering how much your case is worth. This is worthy of consideration, as accident victims who do not know the adequate value of their personal injury cases can be left without the financial support they need to recover from their injuries.
At Minton Law Group, we have the legal knowledge and litigation experience needed to calculate the value of car accident cases accurately. We help our clients seek the maximum compensation they are entitled to receive. Call us today at 855-Xadjuster to schedule a free case evaluation.
How Much Money Will You Get in an Arkansas Car Accident Lawsuit?
After being injured in a motor vehicle accident, it is understandable that you are concerned about the possibility of financial recovery. You may be wondering how much someone can sue for a car accident.
What is the average car accident verdict or settlement? The answer depends on the circumstances of the accident. Each client and car accident case is unique, so the payout of verdicts and settlements varies widely and depends on several factors.
If a client only sustains minor injuries and/or property damage in an auto accident, the payout may be a few thousand dollars to cover medical expenses and the cost of vehicle repairs. However, if the accident victim has suffered more severe injuries, then he or she could be awarded substantially more.
For example, one of our clients who was injured in a motor vehicle accident by an intoxicated driver received a verdict of $350,000. Click here to view other past car accident settlements our law firm has achieved.
Factors That Affect How Much You Can Sue for After an Arkansas Car Accident
The following are some of the many factors that impact how much you can sue someone for after a car accident.
Liability insurance limits
Generally, you can sue the insurance company for the amount of damages up to the coverage limits. Coverage limits vary depending on the type of policy a driver holds.
Arkansas requires every automobile owner to have the following minimum liability coverage:
- $25,000 per person for bodily injury
- $50,000 per accident for bodily injury
- $25,000 for property damage
If the at-fault driver only had minimum liability insurance coverage, the cost of your damages may exceed the limits of what the car insurance policy covers. You will then need to sue the driver personally or look to other sources to recover the full extent of your damages.
Extent and severity of injuries
The severity and type of your injuries can impact the value of your car accident claim. Generally, the value of a personal injury case increases with the severity of an injury. In other words, the more extensive your injury, the more you can sue for.
For example, a person who sustains a severe spinal cord injury will likely receive a greater car accident settlement than someone who suffered minor whiplash.
Factors that are considered when determining the extent of car accident injuries include:
- The length of recovery time
- Whether the injuries are permanent
- How the injuries affect a person’s quality of life
- The impact your injuries have on your ability to support yourself financially
- The estimated cost of your ongoing medical treatment
Prompt medical attention
After a car crash, you don’t want to give auto insurance companies any reason to question your claim. Failure to receive prompt medical care after a collision can further complicate your car accident case.
The insurance company may refute the value of your car accident claim by arguing that your injuries were not caused in the accident since it took days or weeks for you to go to the doctor.
The insurer could also contend that your delayed treatment worsened your condition and that your failure to mitigate damages decreases how much your car accident settlement is worth.
Thus, seeking prompt medical attention after an accident increases your chance of receiving fair compensation for your personal injury claim.
Who is at fault and liable
Fault and liability do not always lie solely with the other driver involved in the car accident. While it is true that driver error is the most common cause of auto accidents, there may also be other factors involved. For example, defective car parts or poorly maintained roads may have contributed to the incident.
You may be able to car accident lawsuit against one or more of the following parties:
- Vehicle manufacturers
- Property owners
- Rideshare companies
- Auto parts manufacturers
- Delivery or trucking companies
- Government entities
- Auto mechanics
If your car accident involved a trucking company, rideshare service, or other business, the insurance policy may have coverage limits as high as $1 million.
Evidence and degree of fault
Your personal injury attorney will begin gathering evidence to prove fault immediately after taking on your case. The greater the evidence is against the plaintiff, the better chance you have of receiving a higher car accident injury settlement.
If the other party was entirely responsible for causing the car accident, you should receive full compensation for damages. However, your compensation can be reduced if you are partially responsible for causing the crash.
Arkansas is a modified comparative negligence state. This means that you can pursue a local car accident claim against another party even if you were partly responsible for the crash. However, the amount you recover will be reduced in proportion to your degree of fault.
The modified comparative negligence rule in our state caps out at 50 percent. This means that you cannot recover damages from the other party if you are 50 percent or more responsible for the accident.
Statements made after the accident
What you say after the accident could impact the amount of your car accident settlement. For example, saying the simple words “I’m sorry” at the accident scene could be construed as an admission of fault.
Additionally, be careful how you respond if an adjuster from the insurance company asks you how you are feeling. If you say, “I’m fine,” or “I’m okay,” the adjuster could claim that you yourself stated that your injuries are not that bad so you are now exaggerating your condition to get more money.
As you can see, it is in your best interests to avoid speaking to the insurance company until you consult with an Arkansas personal injury lawyer. It is especially important not to give an official or recorded statement with a personal injury attorney present. Any statements you make could be used against you if you are deposed or asked to testify in court.
How to Calculate Damages in Arkansas Car Accident Cases
Car accident victims can sue to recover money for the economic and non-economic damages they have suffered as a result of the accident. The extent of the losses you have sustained in the accident will affect how much money you can sue for from the other party.
A car accident lawyer from Minton Law Firm will know how to identify what damages you qualify for and how to accurately calculate the value of your claim.
The following are some types of economic damages commonly included in car accident lawsuits:
- Medical bills: Your car accident lawyer will calculate your past, present, and future medical expenses. This can include ambulance rides, exams, hospital stays, surgeries, rehabilitation therapy, prescription medications, and more.
- Property and vehicle damage: A personal injury attorney can also help you sue for the costs to repair or replace your vehicle. You can also seek compensation for personal items such as cell phones, laptops, tablets, sunglasses, and other items damaged in the collision.
- Lost wages: The injuries you sustained in the collision may leave you unable to return to work for an extended period of time. Your personal injury lawsuit can include lost wages, lost health insurance benefits, lost vacation days, and other work-related losses.
- Value of services: If you did not work outside of the home before the car accident, you might have provided household services that you can no longer perform. You may now need to hire outside companies that offer these services, which may be child care, lawn and garden maintenance, housekeeping, or transportation.
Your Arkansas car accident lawyer can also help you sue to recover money for non-economic losses such as:
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Loss of ability to enjoy life
- Loss of consortium
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Mental anguish
- Loss of society
These types of losses are subjective and more complicated to calculate. At Jason Minton Law Firm, we are prepared to utilize the help of doctors, psychiatrists, life care planners, and others when calculating your non-economic losses.
Typically, the more long-term your injuries are and the more your quality of life has been impacted, the higher your case value will be.
Unlike economic and non-economic damages, punitive damages are not awarded to victims to compensate for their losses. Punitive damages are designed to punish gross negligence or reprehensible conduct and deter others from acting in the same manner.
For example, if you were harmed in a car accident by a drunk driver or a driver that was street racing, the judge may choose to award you punitive damages.
The amount awarded for punitive damages in Arkansas can be substantial, even far greater than the award for compensatory damages. In some car accident cases, victims are awarded multi-million dollar settlements.
How to Maximize the Value of an Arkansas Car Accident Lawsuit
In order to recover fair and reasonable compensation, you will need to prove the other driver caused your motor vehicle accident and that you suffered damages. This requires evidence and documentation.
Taking the following actions can help ensure the success of your car accident lawsuit:
- Call 911 and report the auto accident. Ask for the responding officer’s full name and badge number.
- Take videos and photos of the accident scene. Document damage to the vehicles, road conditions, your injuries, and anything else that seems pertinent. Speak to any eyewitnesses of the accident and take down their names and contact information.
- Seek medical attention as soon as possible. Follow all medical treatments recommended by your doctor and keep copies of your medical bills. Document daily how you are feeling physically and emotionally in the days and weeks after the car accident.
- Do not post about the accident or your injuries on social media. The other party’s insurance company could find ways to use the information posted to devalue your case.
- Contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible and schedule a free consultation.
How Much Does It Cost to Sue Someone for a Car Accident?
After being injured in an accident, you are likely overwhelmed, stressed, and facing a mountain of medical expenses, all while being unable to return to work. Likely, the last thing that you want to worry about is how to pay the legal fees associated with filing a car accident lawsuit.
Minton Law Firm, like most personal injury law firms, represents car accident victims on a contingency fee basis. This means that you do not pay us any upfront costs or fees.
We only get paid if your case is successful, and then our fee will be a percentage of your verdict or settlement. In other words, if you don’t get paid, you owe us nothing.
Contact an Arkansas Car Accident Attorney Today
Have you been injured in an Arkansas car accident? Are you wondering how much compensation you are entitled to recover? Our personal injury attorneys would be happy to meet with you and discuss the value of your claim.
As a former insurance adjuster, Justin Minton is familiar with the tactics used by insurance companies to reduce the amount paid out for car accident claims. We, his empathetic legal team, care about the people we represent; that’s why we will fight to maximize your claim and get you the fair compensation you deserve when we take on your case.
Do not wait to call us. The sooner you contact our personal injury attorneys, the sooner our legal team can begin working on your case.
Contact our law offices today to schedule a free consultation. Call us 24/7 at 855-Xadjuster or complete the contact form. We proudly serve Little Rock – Pulaski County – Arkansas, Benton – Saline County – Arkansas, and Conway – Faulkner County – Arkansas.