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How Texas Car Accident Settlements are Calculated

Posted by : stevenson-murray on July 6, 2020

Explained By Our Houston Car Accident Lawyers

Car accidents injure three million U.S. drivers each year. In 2018, the most recent date TxDOT published crash statistics, slightly more than 249,000 motorists in our state suffered injuries from car accidents. Of those 249,000 motorists, more than 14,900 suffered serious injuries.

Serious accidents can disrupt your life and the lives of your family members. Depending on the nature of the injury and other factors, you or your family could face millions of dollars in expenses. For instance, the average lifetime costs of a C1-C4 complete spinal cord injury for a 25-year-old could total more than $5 million dollars. This figure does not include losses in wages, benefits, or costs associated with pain and suffering. 

Car accident settlements can help crash survivors and their family members recover compensation for these expenses. Our Houston car accident lawyers may be able to help you pursue a settlement or verdict. However, there are many factors that affect the outcome of a crash settlement.

Damages and Car Accident Compensation

A Houston car accident attorney can help negotiate a settlement with the insurance companies after a crash. The amount of compensation you can recover depends on your damages and factors surrounding the accident. 

Car accident cases involve two main types of compensatory damages, noneconomic and economic damages. 

Economic Damages in Texas

Economic damages are tangible expenses caused by a crash. Examples of economic damages may include: 

  • Medical bills. You are likely to have medical bills if you or a loved one suffered injuries during a crash. If the injuries were serious, then medical bills may also include costs associated with rehabilitation services or at-home medical care. 
  • Home modifications. Serious injuries may require modifications to your home. This is most often the case if a car accident resulted in a catastrophic injury that limits movement. Additionally, it may be necessary to make modifications to a vehicle or business owned by the plaintiff.
  • Lost wages or loss of future earnings. A serious injury can keep you from being able to return to work. Additionally, a serious injury can negatively impact your future earnings. Your level of education, prior jobs, and future earning potential may factor into a settlement or verdict. Lost wages may also apply to cases involving wrongful death.
  • Transportation costs. You may be unable to drive yourself after an injury. In this case, your settlement or verdict may cover transportation costs due to an inability to drive. 
  • Funeral expenses. If you lost a loved one to a car accident, then your settlement or verdict may factor in funeral expenses. 

Many larger, more experienced law firms work with medical experts and other parties to help quantify your economic damages. 

Noneconomic Damages in Texas

There are also noneconomic damages that may factor into a settlement or verdict. Noneconomic damages are not as tangible as economic damages, and are more difficult to quantify. Examples of noneconomic damages include but are not limited to:

  • Pain and suffering.
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of consortium

What Else Affects Texas Car Accident Compensation?

Depending on the circumstances, there are other rules that could affect the outcome of your case. The amount you recover may be less if it is determined you shared a certain amount of fault for causing the accident. If you are more than 50 percent responsible for the accident, then you may be unable to recover compensation.

For this reason, you should be selective when choosing an attorney. An experienced Houston car accident lawyer can work with experts to establish your damages, the cause of the crash, and may uncover additional evidence that helps your case. 

You should not take the first car accident settlement offer provided by the at-fault driver’s insurance company. Speak to an attorney first. 

About Our Houston Car Accident Lawyers

The Houston car accident lawyers at Stevenson & Murray may be able to help you or a loved one recover compensation after a wreck. You can schedule a free consultation with us by dialing (713) 597-3836 or by using the contact form on our site

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