Visitor Question

Concussion from SUV Car Accident…

Submitted By: Anonymous (USA)

My wife and I were in an accident and our brand new SUV was totaled. I was a passenger and received a sprain, concussion, and contusion to the head. I even missed 3 days of work and was taken to the hospital after the accident.

What is a good amount I should start with for settlement negotiations?

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Anonymous,

All personal injury claims begin with medical bills. In the legal business medical bills are referred as the “Hard Costs”.

Before considering any settlement you really need to let your medical treatment run its course. One of the biggest mistakes people who represent themselves make is settling too soon, and for too little.

There isn’t any rush to settle your case. There is a 2 year Statute of Limitations period. That is the time period in which a person must settle his claim or file his lawsuit. After that date all legal rights to sue are gone.

These are the following items you will need to verify before beginning any settlement talks:

• Hard Costs

• Out of Pocket Expenses (These can include the cost of prescription and over the counter medications, bandages, parking fees for doctors’ offices, and even a prorated amount of the gasoline you used while going through all you had to during your convalescence)

• Lost Wages

Once you have all this information you will next need to request your doctors’ diagnoses and prognoses of your injuries and treatment. The doctors’ verification of your injuries and treatment are very important factors in the negotiations.

Then you can ask the insurance company for any amount of a multiple of 1. In other words, you might start at asking for 3 times your Hard Costs. You can ask for more if you like. The multiple really is a factor of your injuries and treatment costs.

The purpose of the multiple of Hard Costs is to avoid haggling over the amounts of out of pocket expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.

Once your settlement is made all of the above will be covered.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: September 11, 2011

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