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February 28, 2023

Personal Injury Settlement Amount Examples and FAQs

by Evan Breaux | Attorney | 0 comments

Below, we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions people have about personal injury settlements, along with examples of car accident settlements in New Orleans that Breaux Law Firm has won for our clients. How do settlements work? How long does a settlement take? What is the typical compensation? Read on for our answers.

Settlement FAQs

Q: First, what exactly is a Personal Injury Settlement? 

A: A car accident settlement is when the insurance company of the at-fault driver in a car accident offers the victim a financial payment. A settlement is one way to agree to end a dispute. The other way to resolve a dispute or claim is through the court system, with a judge or jury making the final decision on who is at fault for the accident, to what degree, and what amount of money should be paid to the victim.

All sorts of accidents can result in a personal injury settlement. These accidents might involve automobiles, motorcycles, boats, animal bites, product liability, medical malpractice, wrongful death, maritime jobs, and even offshore jobs. At Breaux Law Firm, we are experienced personal injury attorneys in all of these fields and more.

Q: What Types of Personal Injury Cases Pay the Most?

Auto accidents and medical malpractice are two types of personal injury claims that result in high settlements. Medical malpractice claims are complicated, but due to the complexity of the issues and the potentially life-altering harm caused to victims, the compensation can be large. 

Auto accidents are another type of personal injury claim where a victim can end up receiving a significant sum of money to cover medical expenses, past and future damages, loss of wages, and property damage. 

A common assumption is that being in a car accident with a rideshare driver working for a corporation, like the rideshare companies Uber and Lyft or a commercial trucking company, will result in a large pay-out. Sometimes this can be true. In the event of an accident with a commercial driver or rideshare driver, that corporation’s insurance company will send out a specific insurance adjuster to review the damage to the vehicles, evaluate the case, and either deny fault, refute the severity, or offer the victim a minimal settlement to close the case. Another common argument trucking and rideshare companies often use is that their drivers are independent contractors and thus the company owes nothing to an injured victim.

Be aware that by accepting a small amount of money as an initial settlement, you are giving up your right to pursue further reimbursement of related damages. In other words, if your injuries turn out to be much more severe, but you accepted a small settlement from a corporation’s insurance company, you can no longer file a claim or sue for reimbursement of additional medical bills or other accident-related costs. 

The truest answer to this question is: The personal injury cases that pay the most are the ones where the victim hires a personal injury attorney.

Q: How Do Personal Injury Settlements Work?

A: Again, a settlement is a monetary payment offered as an agreement to end a dispute between two parties. In car accident cases, a settlement means the victim (or “plaintiff”) waives all future legal rights stemming from the accident, and will no longer be able to file additional lawsuits relating to the car accident in the future. If you settle with an insurance company on your own, without hiring a personal injury attorney, you might find yourself undercompensated, even if the property damages, medical costs, or other accident-related damages turn out to be far greater than the victim had previously understood. Working with a personal injury attorney can ensure that this does not happen to you.

The at-fault driver does not pay the settlement out of their own bank account. In most cases, the at-fault party’s insurance company pays the settlement. A personal injury attorney is the person who communicates with that insurance company on your behalf, ensuring that you receive a full and fair compensation.

Q: How Much Compensation is Typical in Personal Injury Cases?

A: The amount of money awarded in the average personal injury settlement varies greatly and depends on many different factors. At Breaux Law Firm, the majority of the settlements we win for our clients can fall anywhere between $15,000 and $1 million. The amount will be determined by you and your attorney based on your medical bills, property damage, loss of income, and past and future pain and suffering. However, the amount can change during the negotiation process, and the at-fault party’s insurance company will make a “final offer” before reaching an agreed-upon amount.

Some car accident settlement examples: 

One thing to keep in mind is that the at-fault party’s insurance company is hoping to pay the victim as little as possible. This is their main goal during negotiations and the entire settlement process. So you’ll have to fight. You will have to know when to reject an offer that is too low. But you don’t need to do this on your own, and in fact, you should not. Working with a personal injury attorney means you have someone who is fighting for you—and with you—through the whole process.

Q: How are Personal Injury Settlement Amounts Determined?

A: After an accident, the victim will file an insurance claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company. The police who are called to the scene of the accident will establish who is at fault. The at-fault party’s insurance company will investigate the accident using an insurance claims adjuster, who will review evidence such as police reports, statements from witnesses and all involved parties, medical records, photographs, video footage, and recordings.

After completing the investigation, the claim is accepted or rejected by the insurance company. However, just because a claim is approved, it does not necessarily mean the insurance company agrees to provide proper compensation for the victim’s damages. The victim may still need to evaluate the amount offered and fight for fair reimbursement. If a claim is rejected, a victim doesn’t need to accept the insurance company’s decision as final. At this point in the process, the accident victim should be consulting with a personal injury lawyer. The attorney will study the claim, investigate the accident, and help ensure that the victim receives the compensation to which they are entitled.

Often, by offering the injured party a quick settlement, the insurance company is also asking the victim to agree not to pursue further compensation or a lawsuit in court. That might turn out to be a bad decision, especially if the victim’s injuries are long-lasting or increase in severity during the months after the accident. This is yet another reason why injured parties should not accept a settlement without first hiring a personal injury attorney.

The best settlement amounts are determined between a victim and their personal injury attorney. The attorney is able to use their experience and expertise to fully grasp the extent of the injuries and suffering, and will help prepare and submit all documents to strengthen the claim and demand. If you are in New Orleans or Louisiana, reach out to the attorneys at Breaux Law Firm, who provide personalized care and have won millions of dollars in reimbursement for clients. We do not recommend that anyone attempts to negotiate a settlement with an insurance company on their own.

Q: How Long Does It Take to Reach a Settlement?

A: The amount of time it takes to reach a settlement depends on many factors. Accident settlements may take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months or even a few years. Remember, reaching a settlement outside of court ultimately saves the insurance company a lot of money. Hiring lawyers to defend the case in court can be expensive for the insurance company, and can cause the case to drag out even longer.

Working with experienced personal injury lawyers ensures that your claim is filed quickly and accurately, and that your settlement process moves smoothly. A personal injury lawyer is your advocate who will help you make key decisions, like whether to accept or reject a settlement offer—and this will make your claim move faster in the long run.

Q: How Can a Lawyer Help with Personal Injury Settlement Amounts?

A: Simply put, using an attorney will help you get more reimbursement from your insurance claim or from a lawsuit. Why? Because insurance companies know that if a victim has hired an attorney, the insurance company cannot settle the case as quickly and as cheaply as they would with an unrepresented person. In other words, the insurance company cannot take advantage of an injured party who is represented by a personal injury attorney. A personal injury attorney acts as a shield, protecting the victim from the manipulation and greedy tactics of the insurance company.

One of the best things you can do for yourself as a victim of any type of accident is to seek professional legal representation. Dealing with insurance companies, filing claims, and going to court are all very complicated, but a lawyer can guide you confidently through each step.

Q: Why Choose Breaux Law for Your Firm Personal Injury Lawyers?

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A: After an accident, your first step should be to take the time you need to recover, both mentally and physically. Your next step should be to contact the attorneys at Breaux Law Firm for a free consultation. Our attorneys will assess your case and determine how you can receive the best compensation for the damages you sustained. There is nothing more valuable and reassuring than having someone by your side who understands your case and your rights, and who will ensure you receive the full compensation you’re entitled to. Your attorney’s payment will be a percentage of the amount you are awarded in the settlement, so you don’t have to worry about paying your attorney at all.

To select the best personal injury attorney for you, ask for recommendations among your family and friends. Which attorneys have they worked with previously? Did they receive settlements or compensation that successfully met all of the accident-related costs? Which firm treats their clients with respect, personal attention, and dignity? Because that is what we strive for at Breaux Law Firm. Our motto is “personal attention for personal injuries.” We’ve been in business for decades and are experienced in personal injury law. We believe our clients are like family and will fight for you as if we were fighting for one of our own. Our reputation speaks for itself; we are ready to fight for you.

Reach out to us today at (504) 914 7779 or info@breaulaw.com. We will share with you our personal injury settlement amounts examples, and will discuss your claim and the settlement that is fair compensation for the full extent of your injuries.  We’re here for you.