Car Collision Injury Settlement...
(Claremont, CA, USA)
I had a car collision injury in Ohio. The auto accident was the other person's fault. It happened last May 2010. My back is still in pain. I have been to a chiropractor, pain Dr, had an MRI, X-rays, and physical therapy.
I can't sit for too long without my back really hurting. It hurts when I lift. I have to use a lumbar back support whenever I sit to help with the pain.
I talked to the Insurance woman today and she offered me $5,000 above all the money I owe for Dr's bills which is $3,200 plus the almost $500 I paid out of pocket. I have no idea how much to ask for but I feel $5,000 isn't enough for my daily pain.
I was told I can't hire an attorney in California where I live, that I have to hire one from Ohio where the accident occurred.
My quality of life is not what it used to be. How much should I ask for? Thank you for your help.
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ANSWER for "Car Collision Injury Settlement...":
Although you are negotiating with the driver’s insurance company, you should also keep the 2 years “limitations” date in mind at all times. It seems the Claims Adjuster is offering you net $5,000.00 dollars above the $3,200.00 for your Pain and Suffering. The amount is a little less than 1x the medicals. The usual amount for cases similar to yours is at least 3x medicals.
You will have to decide how much more your future medicals and out of pocket expenses may be. From the facts you are certainly going to need future medical treatment. If that is the case, the $5,000.00 you are being offered may not only end up being less than 1x medicals, but might conceivably not even be enough to pay all your future medical and out of pocket expenses.
You have asked what amount to ask for. It might be best if you did not settle the case at this time. Rather, tell the adjuster you are going to continue receiving treatment. Tell the adjuster you will continue to fax her medicals and out of pocket expenses as they appear so she can just “pay as you go.”
Once all your treatment is completed you can negotiate a final settlement based on the total of past, present, and future medicals. Just don't forget about the statute of limitations for filing a suit or you'll lose all rights to compensation.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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