After a car accident, bills pile up quickly. Depending on the severity of the crash, you may face medical costs, time off work and replacing your vehicle. It is tempting to arrange a car accident lawsuit settlement as soon as possible, but a rushed resolution can result in less than you deserve.
Insurance companies review several criteria to decide how much to offer, but the final number may not cover all of your expenses. Typically, your claim will be against the insurer of the person who caused the accident. In South Dakota, all drivers must carry coverage for damage to another’s vehicle and for bodily harm or injury. Sometimes policy limits are lower than what you might be owed for all the damage caused by your accident, so you might also have a claim under your own policy. Especially in that case, it is a good idea to turn to a South Dakota car accident attorney for help.
Insurers will investigate how much repairs cost or, if the car is a total loss, agree to pay out the value of the vehicle before the accident. Therefore, if your car is older, you may receive less than you need to get a new vehicle. Your options may largely depend on what collision coverage you carry with your car insurance policy.
Medical Costs and Lost Wages
These are among the personal injury damages you incur because of the accident. They may be challenging to calculate, especially if you need ongoing care. Be aware that once you settle for an amount, you cannot ask for more, even if you have more medical care later on that is traced back to the accident.
Pain and Suffering
With every accident, there are intangible effects on your life and wellbeing. This is what pain and suffering damages are supposed to represent. Often an insurance company will multiply your medical costs and lost wages to come up with a figure for pain and suffering. Typically, insurers use a very small multiplier, though if medical bills are large, they might use a larger multiplier. Either way, that approach is not necessarily accurate or fair; serious, lasting effects often accompany injuries for which treatment costs are relatively low.
Talk to Us About Your Accident
There is no magic formula to determine how much your insurer will offer in a car accident settlement, and the amount offered to people not represented by an attorney usually is very conservative. Often, it may be far below what you need to get your life back on track. To get a full understanding of your options from an advocate who is on your side, speak to a South Dakota lawyer at Turbak Law at (866) 231-0914.