The exact amount of money that you receive after being injured in a car accident depends on a few factors. The extent of your injuries, your medical bills, and the at-fault driver’s insurance policy limits are the three most important components in determining how much money you’ll receive. Future medical costs, pain and suffering, and how much time you missed from work will also be considered in determining the amount of compensation you’re eligible for. Some people believe car accident victims are trying to get rich quick, but the purpose of receiving money after a car accident is to “make you whole” again or to put you back in the position you were in before the accident. In most cases, making you “whole” is nearly impossible, so the money you receive is supposed to get you back to a place of normalcy like the accident never happened.
The extent of your injuries is always a major factor in evaluating a personal injury claim after a car accident, but the exact value of injuries can be difficult to calculate since everyone’s injuries are valued differently. For example, a car accident involving a young Olympic track athlete who has their leg amputated will be valued differently than a car accident involving a retired elderly man who has his leg amputated, mainly because the track athlete’s earning capacity will be diminished much greater than the elderly man’s earning capacity. The young athlete’s case will also be valued more in general because of the future medical costs the young athlete will have in comparison to the elderly retired man. Obviously, the elderly man would receive a significant amount of compensation for his amputation, but the young athlete would likely be able to recover more for his or her injuries because the retired elderly man will face fewer long-term consequences given his age.
Medical bills, medical expenses, and lost wages are all expenses that the at-fault party’s insurance company is required to cover as well. Medical bills are objective and can be easily calculated, but damages for pain and suffering are extremely subjective. Using our example above, the young athlete and the elderly retired man may recover similar damages for pain and suffering at the time of the accident since they experienced similar injuries, but how long the pain lasted, how much they continue to suffer, and how much they plan to rehabilitate their injuries will likely be different. The young athlete in our example may require multiple surgeries and physical therapy in the future as he or she attempts to learn to walk/run again, while the elderly man may decide to use a wheelchair or vice versa. Even when injuries are similar in nature, damages for pain and suffering or future medical costs may be drastically different.
Even if the medical bills, pain and suffering and the future medical costs warrant hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages, the insurance company is generally limited by the policy limits of the at-fault driver. Meaning, if the at-fault driver has a $10,000.00 insurance policy limit, the insurance company will usually only cover up to $10,000.00 in damages regardless of what your injuries and damages amount to. You can also recover individually from the at-fault driver, but most personal injury lawyers do not pursue individual claims against the at-fault driver unless the at-fault driver has assets available to cover any judgment the lawyer receives in the case.
If you have been injured in a car accident or some other situation, then you should contact The Law Office of Matthew C. Williams to determine how much compensation you can receive for your injuries. Insurance companies will oftentimes claim you are at fault, argue your injuries are superficial, or they will delay their case until you are willing to settle for less than your case is worth, but with the help of Attorney Williams, you will have the same resources, financial backing and experience that the insurance companies have.
The Law Office of Matthew C. Williams focuses primarily on personal injury matters and we take pride in having a personal relationship with their clients. Attorney Williams treats his clients like family because he knows what they are dealing with is always more than just a case, and he refuses to let adjusters, defense lawyers, or big insurance stand in the way of getting his clients what they deserve. He obtains results for his clients and he’ll do the same for you, so give The Law Office of Matthew C. Williams a call to find out what your case is worth today.
PIP, or Personal Injury Protection, also known as “no-fault” car insurance, is insurance that covers your medical bills or lost wages when you or your passengers are injured in a car accident. PIP covers the medical costs related to injuries a person sustains in an accident regardless of who was at-fault in the accident; and while PIP coverage is optional in most states, it is mandated by the State of Florida for all drivers.
Every state has different rules and laws as they relate to PIP coverage, and Florida, like many states, has its own set of special laws and regulations. Florida law requires vehicle owners to carry at least $10,000 in PIP coverage. Florida law also requires anyone seeking benefits under PIP to seek medical treatment within 14 days of the car accident. If you do not seek medical treatment within 14 days of your accident then you may be ineligible to receive benefits under PIP. For that reason, it is extremely important that you visit the Emergency Room or see a doctor as soon as possible if you have been involved in a car accident. If you do not see a doctor within 14 days of your accident then you may end up stuck with thousands of dollars in out-of-pocket expenses.
In Florida, PIP Insurance covers medical costs, lost wages and death benefits. In fact, most medical costs, including but not limited to medical services, medication, surgical services, rehab costs, diagnostic services and ambulatory services are covered by PIP. However, only 80% of your medical costs will be covered by PIP. For example, if you had $10,000 in medical costs, PIP will only cover $8,000 worth of your bills. Oftentimes, an individual’s health insurance will cover the outstanding balance, but if that individual does not have health insurance then they may be required to pay their medical bills out of pocket.
PIP will pay for 60% of your lost wages as well (subject to the $10,000 limit). This coverage includes hourly jobs, salaried positions or services like doing laundry, cleaning the house and taking care of pets. Your lawyer can seek payment for the other 40% of your lost wages from the at-fault driver in your personal injury claim. If you are seeking benefits under PIP for lost wages, then you are required to have your employer complete a wage and salary verification for that lists your gross wages for the 13 weeks preceding the incident. PIP will also cover $5,000 worth of death benefits, which are in addition to any medical or disability benefits provided under the policy.
If you have been injured in a car accident then you should contact the Law Office of Matthew C. Williams to discuss your rights and determine whether or not you are eligible to receive PIP benefits. Attorney Williams can also help you navigate the PIP insurance process to make sure you are receiving the maximum benefits under PIP. Depending on the facts of your case, we may be able to hold the at-fault driver or vehicle owner accountable for their negligence in a personal injury claim as well. There are many benefits to retaining a lawyer after you were injured in a car accident. Matthew Williams and his legal team focus primarily on personal injury matters and they take pride in having a personal relationship with their clients. Attorney Williams treats his clients like family because he knows what they are dealing with is always more than just a case, and he refuses to let adjusters, defense lawyers, or big insurance stand in the way of getting his clients what they deserve. He obtains results for his clients and he’ll do the same for you, so give The Law Office of Matthew Williams a call to find out what your case is worth today.