Herniated disc pain from a car accident can be life-altering. While some herniations are minor, others involve excruciating pain and undergoing expensive medical treatments. Understandably, you want to know the average car accident settlement for a herniated disc. Unfortunately, there’s no set amount or average because every herniation differs. But there are a number of factors that can affect the value of your claim.
What Is the Average Payout for Herniated Disc Injuries in California?
It’s important to note that there’s no specific amount or average car accident settlement for a herniated disc. Each case is unique, and a variety of factors influence your compensation. While it may be tempting to compare your case to others or look for a general figure, it’s better to concentrate on calculating your potential case value. That’s where an experienced California car accident lawyer’s knowledge becomes invaluable.
Instead of focusing on average settlement amounts, learn more about the factors that affect your case. Work with an experienced accident attorney to negotiate the best possible settlement.
Factors That Impact a Potential Settlement for a Herniated Disc in a Car Accident
The main factors that impact your claim include the severity of your herniation and expected outcome, your total damages, who’s liable, and the available insurance coverage. Let’s look more at how these factors impact your coverage.
The Severity of Your Herniation
As with other types of car accident injuries, the severity of your herniation impacts your potential case value. That’s because the more severe your injury is, the more your case is likely worth. A more severe herniation may require extensive medical treatment, including surgery, physical therapy, and medication. You might be unable to return to work for a few months and have residual pain and reduced mobility.
Sometimes, a severe herniation may also lead to a permanent disability. To negotiate a higher settlement, you must provide documentation of your injuries, medical treatments, and any limitations you face due to your herniated disc.
Establishing liability in a car accident is critical in determining the settlement amount. California follows a pure comparative negligence standard. Your settlement will be less if you share any percentage of fault for the accident. For example, if you’re 20% at fault, you will receive only 80% of your damages. If you’re 80% at fault, you’ll only receive 20%.
It’s crucial to gather and present evidence that proves the other party’s negligence, such as accident reports, witness statements, and photographs of the accident scene. Working with an attorney can be invaluable in building a solid case that establishes the other party’s liability. Otherwise, you could be missing out on the valuable compensation you deserve.
The total damages you have incurred significantly affect your settlement amount. Damages typically fall under one of two main categories—economic and non-economic.
Economic damages include medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage, while non-economic damages cover pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life. Keep detailed records of all damages and work with an attorney to ensure the other driver’s insurance adjuster considers all related expenses.
Available Insurance Coverage
The amount of insurance coverage available can also impact your settlement. In California, drivers must carry a minimum amount of liability coverage. However, this might not be enough to cover all your damages. It won’t matter if you have $100,000 in damages if the other driver has only $25,000 in liability limits.
If the at-fault party has limited coverage, you may need to explore other options, such as filing a claim with your insurance company under your underinsured motorist (UIM) policy. In some cases, you may also need to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver to recover additional compensation. However, this is not typically recommended as most people won’t have personal assets that could satisfy a court judgment.
How Much of a Settlement to Expect for a Herniated Disc?
Calculating damages is a tricky part of any car accident settlement, which is why we strongly suggest hiring an experienced lawyer. Non-economic damages are subjective, leading to wildly different calculations between insurance adjusters and injured victims. One of the best ways to anticipate what the insurance company might offer is to understand the settlement calculators most companies use.
Per Diem Method
The per diem method can determine a settlement amount for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering. Under this method, adjusters assign a specific dollar amount to each day you experience pain and suffering due to your herniated disc. This daily rate, or “per diem,” is multiplied by the total number of days you suffered to arrive at a value. The per diem rate is often your daily salary.
Another standard method is the multiplier method. Economic damages (such as medical expenses and lost wages) are multiplied by a factor, typically ranging from 1.5 to 5, to account for non-economic damages like pain and suffering. The specific multiplier correlates to the severity of your herniation and the impact on your quality of life, with five being the most serious.
Contact Beliz Law Firm For Help With Your Herniated Disc Settlement
If you have questions about your car accident settlement for a herniated disc, please get in touch with the experienced legal team at Beliz Law Firm. Attorney Michael Beliz has years of experience successfully helping clients get the compensation they deserve for car accident injuries. We understand the serious nature of herniations and potential problems that can arise later in life. Please schedule an initial consultation to learn more about how we can help.