Being injured in a car accident is an incredibly stressful experience. At the same time that you are trying to recover physically from your injuries, you are also faced with significant medical bills, lost income, and uncertainty about the future. If you are wondering how much can someone sue for a car accident, you are in the right place.
If you are considering suing a negligent party for damages, you are likely wondering, How much can I sue for? And, will it be enough to cover the costs of my medical care? My lost income? What about my pain and suffering?
There is no “typical” settlement amount for a car accident case. Rather, the value of any car accident lawsuit is dependent upon the specific circumstances of your accident and injuries.
With the right legal guidance, you can get answers about the potential compensation you could receive if you file a lawsuit. That information will help you to make informed decisions during the claims process.
How Much Is an Average Car Accident Settlement in Indiana?
Unfortunately, there are no useful “averages” for car accident settlements in Indiana. The differences from one case to the next make it nearly impossible to compare.
There are a few reasons why we don’t have solid numbers, either. First of all, there is no centralized data source for settlements. A law firm can share numbers about their specific case results, and individuals can look up newsworthy cases to learn about examples, but there is no one crunching the numbers.
Additionally, many cases are settled out of court – even if the lawsuit process has already begun. In those instances, the numbers are almost always confidential, which means you are not going to get a good “average” number.
Many car accident settlements or court awards are in the hundreds of thousands of dollars – or even millions.
The best way to find out how much your case might be worth is to speak with an experienced and knowledgeable car accident attorney.
Factors That Influence Settlement Amounts
The factors that influence settlement amounts can be complex – and they are unique to every individual accident. How much can someone sue for a car accident? Let’s take a look at some of the factors that affect the settlement.
Insurance Coverage Limits
Liability insurance policies have a max payout cap. In Indiana, the minimum legal coverage that a driver can have is $25,000 per person for bodily injury. If an at-fault driver has that minimum coverage, their insurer will limit the payout to $25,000.
If your losses exceed the maximum coverage limit, you can file a claim against the negligent party directly. It is harder to get compensation in these situations if the at-fault driver has limited assets. However, an attorney can help you determine your options.
Frequently, insurance payout caps are above the minimum coverage requirement. It’s not uncommon for caps to be set at levels like $50,000 or $100,000 per person.
In severe injury cases, multiple insurance policies may end up being involved. For example, you may sue the at-fault driver and collect damages from your own insurer if you carry underinsured motorist coverage.
Another factor is that multiple parties may be at fault. You may name more than one negligent party in your claim, which would involve suing for the maximum amount from each one.
Degree of Liability
Indiana is a comparative fault state, which means that multiple parties can be found liable for the same accident.
For example, consider that you were injured in an accident that was mostly someone else’s fault. What if you were partially responsible for the accident? Does that mean that you are ineligible for compensation?
No, Indiana would not say that you are out of luck. Rather, your total compensation amount or court award will be reduced by the same percentage as your liability. If you were 20% responsible for the accident, your compensation will be reduced by 20%.
Severity of Injuries
The severity of your injuries directly affects the amount you can sue for. Even a concussion from a car accident can lead to expensive medical bills, so more serious accidents are even more costly!
Serious and catastrophic injuries cost so much more than minor injuries, leaving you with more costly medical bills and an intense rehabilitation period. When your injuries are more severe, you also have more non-economic damages, such as pain, suffering, scarring, and loss of enjoyment of life.
What Damages Can You Sue For?
After an accident, you can sue for both monetary and non-monetary damages.
Monetary damages include:
- Emergency transport costs
- Medical bills, including surgeries and follow-up appointments
- Rehabilitation costs
- Pain medication
- Mental health therapy for trauma
- Property damage
- Lost wages from missed work
- Lost earning capacity if you are unable to return to work
Non-monetary damages include:
- Pain and suffering
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
- Wrongful death
Crossen Law Firm- Indianapolis Personal Injury Attorney
Many complex factors determine what a car accident injury claim may be worth, and no two cases are the same. While it’s not possible for us to provide a specific number that you should expect, an experienced car accident attorney can assess the details of your case and help you understand what compensation you may be entitled to.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident in Indiana, don’t leave your recovery to chance. Contact the dedicated legal team at Crossen Law Firm for a free, no-obligation review of your case.
Our attorneys have helped accident victims recover millions of dollars over decades of practice. Let us put our experience to work for you. Contact us today at (317) 401-8626 to get answers about your legal options and to get the maximum compensation you deserve.