Were you injured in a car accident in Texas? If so, one of the first things you should learn about is the average car accident settlement amounts in Texas.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, there were 14,202 serious motor vehicle crashes in the state in 2016 and more than 17,500 people suffered serious injuries. When we look at all injuries, however, the number is significantly higher. Indeed, more than 265,000 people sustained injuries in traffic collisions in the state of Texas in 2016. Additionally, most, if not all, of those individuals are seeking compensation through auto insurance claims.
When it comes time to file an auto insurance claim, you may be wondering what kind of settlement amount you can expect to receive. The Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association (RMIIA) reports that the average auto liability claim for property damage is $3,231. Additionally, the average claim for bodily injury is $15,443. Yet many settlements are higher while many are lower than the averages cited. Generally speaking, the car accident settlement amounts average can vary widely. A settlement total depends upon a number of different factors.
Type and Severity of Your Injuries and Property Damage Affect the Amount of Your Settlement
The type and severity of your injuries and your property damage can greatly affect the amount of your Texas car accident settlement. For example, you may be able to obtain a higher settlement if you have extremely costly medical bills, including surgeries and rehabilitative therapy. If your injuries were so severe that you have been unable to work, your settlement can also include lost wages.
Texas car crash settlements can also compensate for losses that are non-economic in nature, such as pain and suffering. In order to be eligible for a high settlement offer, you will need to provide substantial evidence about your losses, including but not limited to:
- Hospital bills;
- Physician statements and other medical records;
- Photographs from the accident site;
- Police reports;
- Witness statements from the scene of the crash; and
- Accident reconstruction report.
Policy Limits and Choosing Where to File Your Claim
Under Texas law, drivers must have minimum amounts of insurance to cover property damage and bodily injury claims. The Texas Department of Insurance cites the following as minimums:
- $30,000 for each injured person, with up to $60,000 per accident regardless of the number of people; and
- $25,000 for property damage per accident.
If multiple people sustain injuries in a single accident caused by a negligent driver, and everyone files a claim through the negligent driver’s insurance company, that insurance may try to offer low-ball settlements. In some cases, the minimums may be insufficient to cover everyone’s losses in a crash settlement, and injury victims may need to file a lawsuit to obtain full compensation.
Increasing the Amount of Your Car Accident Settlement Through Negotiation
Insurance companies in Texas are required to offer settlements and to negotiate settlements in good faith. Even if an insurance company offers a low initial settlement amount, you should know that you can always negotiate in order to obtain a higher settlement. Your Texas car accident attorney can help with counteroffers and the negotiation process to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.
Discuss Your Case with a Texas Auto Accident Lawyer
If you were injured in a motor vehicle collision and have questions about Texas auto accident settlements, you should speak with a Texas car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contact Fadduol, Cluff, Hardy & Conaway, P.C. for more information.