With millions of citizens, Texas is the largest state in the contiguous United States. Since Texas has such a large population, Texas drivers are often faced with busy roads and hectic traffic. Accidents are bound to happen. There is always a probability that someone may act irresponsibly, and negligent activity frequently results in bodily injury.
When you are hurt in a car accident, the effects of your injuries could cascade and cost you in many other areas of your life. Given this, it’s understandable to worry about the amount of your compensation after a car accident. You would benefit greatly from the assistance of an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you calculate the value of your car accident claim.
What Is the Average Settlement for a Car Accident in Texas?
The specific details of your case determine your settlement amount. Texas is an at-fault state, so the at-fault motorist and their insurance company are usually liable for your damages. These damages could warrant a settlement ranging from the thousands to the millions depending on their severity. Consequently, it may be accurate to claim that there is no average auto accident settlement in Texas.
However, insurance companies may try to exploit consumers by giving them significantly less compensation than what they are legally entitled to. Thankfully, you don’t have to accept the insurance company’s initial offer. You can reject their offer and negotiate for a better one with the assistance of an accomplished lawyer. An experienced car accident lawyer can also help you accurately assess your damages to ensure you receive fair compensation.
Texas Auto Insurance Policy Limits
Drivers in Texas are required to have a minimum amount of liability insurance to cover claims for property damage and personal injury. The Texas Department of Insurance requires drivers to have a minimum of $30,000 per injured person and a maximum of $60,000 per accident, regardless of the number of people involved. Texas drivers must also have a minimum of $25,000 for property damage.
When more than one party submits a claim with the negligent driver’s insurance company for a single collision, the insurance company may make lowball settlement offers. In some situations, the minimums in a Texas auto accident settlement may not be enough to cover everyone’s losses, and injured plaintiffs may need to file a lawsuit to receive total compensation.
How Are Car Accident Settlements Calculated?
Because each case is unique, it is hard to gauge the value of a claim out of context. Accident victims must thoroughly analyze all of their losses from the accident. These losses make up your compensatory damages and will factor into your car accident claim value.
Your compensatory damages are made up of economic and non-economic damages. When you are pursuing damages, you are attempting to recoup all of your losses, so you should expect your losses to be covered by your settlement.
To make up for monetary losses, a successful car accident claim will award you economic damages. The most common losses covered by economic damages include the following:
- Urgent medical attention
- Ongoing medical care
- Lost pay
- Prescription medications
- Diminished earning potential
- Rehabilitation expenses
- Property damage
Non-economic damages are awarded to cover Intangible losses or losses that do not have a concrete monetary value. Non-economic damages typically cover the following:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
Since these losses lack a definite monetary value, your non-economic damages must be demonstrated with a reasonable level of certainty. To make sure that your claim is not devalued, your attorney may use a combination of documentation, testimony, and even expert witnesses to validate the compensation you are pursuing.
Punitive damages may also be available in some car accidents. If the at-fault party was egregiously negligent, such as in the case of drunk drivers, you could be awarded punitive damages. However, punitive damages are awarded by a court to penalize the at-fault driver, so they can only be given out at trial and not as part of an insurance settlement.
What Factors Could Reduce My Texas Car Accident Settlement?
Sometimes accident victims are partially responsible for their accident through the negligence of their own. While this makes them ineligible for their full damages award, they are still able to receive a portion as long as they are not primarily responsible for the accident because of modified comparative negligence. Sharing the proportion of fault is just one of the many ways an accident victim can negatively impact their settlement.
Other factors that could reduce your settlement include the following:
- An injury to a body part that sustained a prior injury
- Not seeking treatment right away
- Disregarding medical advice
- Your character
- The trustworthiness of your witnesses
An experienced car accident lawyer can help you counteract these attempts at diminishing your settlement.
What a Lawyer Can Do to Maximize Your Claim
You will be in the greatest possible position to obtain the compensation you are due if you have a lawyer on your side. Your attorney can look into the accident, create a compelling argument the insurance company can’t ignore, represent you in negotiations, and, if necessary, take your case to civil court.
Avoid allowing insurance firms to exploit you. Car accident attorneys with experience can negotiate with insurance adjusters and fight for you to receive the highest settlement.
Discuss Your Potential Settlement Value With a Tenacious Texas Car Accident Attorney from Hilliard Law
Car accidents can involve various factors that cause them to vary case by case, making them complicated to resolve without years of experience handling car accident claims. Every car accident can result in the victims suffering a different unique set of losses, but all require an in-depth knowledge of personal injury law and car accidents. An experienced personal injury lawyer can aid you in determining what your case is worth.
Texas residents considering retaining legal counsel for their car accident case should contact Hilliard Law. Since 1985, Hilliard Law has successfully defended numerous clients and will have likely addressed cases with similar circumstances to yours. Our experienced team of lawyers is relentless in their quest for the best possible settlements for their clients. Contact us at 1-800-334-3298 or fill out our contact form for a free consultation. If we take your case, we will work on a contingent fee basis, which means you don’t pay us unless we win.