What is a reasonable compensation for pain and suffering in a car accident? How? 16 Answers as of October 21, 2013

I was in a car accident Saturday 10/05/13. I was struck by a woman who tried to make a left turn on oncoming traffic. The insurance made their liability decision and she was at fault. My niece of 1 year 3 months was in the back seat strapped in her car seat. She was rushed to Children's Hospital for a large hematoma on her forehead. She was taken straight to Trauma Room then to CT scans. They discharged her within a few hours. I was then taken to emergency room by a family member for neck and back pain. The airbags deployed and I received a black eye, lump on my forearm. The doctor put me out of work until Wednesday. I was sent home with Medications. I followed up with my doctor on Tuesday because of severe pain in my back and he put me out until Monday 10/14. The doctor said for me to follow up in 2 weeks, I have not felt any better. I was have flashbacks of the accident and getting sharp pains in my back and up to my neck. I lost a week of pay and commission. My 1999 Nissan Altima is totaled. I know the insurance is going to low ball me. Need advice.

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Vasilaros Legal,LLC
Vasilaros Legal,LLC | Steven T. Vasilaros
You really need to consult, in person, with a capable attorney.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 10/21/2013
Law Offices of John W. Merting, P.A.
Law Offices of John W. Merting, P.A. | John W. Merting
The insurance company owes you for your car damages. Under Florida No-Fault auto law, unless you have sustained a significant permanent injury you have no claim against other driver, only your PIP coverage from your own company for medicals and wage loss up to $10,000.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 10/21/2013
The Law Office of Benjamin R. Lawson, P.C. | Benjamin Lawson
If you haven't already, you should speak to a personal injury attorney who will help you secure full compensation for your injuries.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 10/21/2013
David F. Stoddard
David F. Stoddard | David F. Stoddard
My advice is to calm down and not worry about any personal injury claim or what it is worth. If you have health insurance, focus on your medical treatment. There is no way to tell what is reasonable compensation until your injuries resolve. If you have no health insurance and cannot afford medical treatment, an attorney may be able to arrange for medical treatment in return for a promise that the bills will be paid out of any settlement proceeds. It might be helpful if you could find out how much insurance the other driver has. If the accident was in South Carolina, S.C. Code Section 38-77-250 explains how to request this information. The SC Code of Laws can be found on line (Google - "SC Code of Laws"). You should also ask your insurance agent if you have underinsured motorist coverage.
Answer Applies to: South Carolina
Replied: 10/21/2013
Gregory M Janks, PC
Gregory M Janks, PC | Gregory M Janks
In Michigan, it is your OWN car insurer that pays for: 1. No Fault Benefits (wage loss, medical care and replacement services); and 2. Collision damage. It is the other @ fault parties vehicle insurer that pays for: 3. Pain and suffering IF any injured party has suffered a serious impairment of a body function, permanent serious disfigurement and/or death. Unless your/your niece's injuries are proven to meet 1 of the above thresholds, you/she can not actually receive money for pain & suffering. So your question about amount can only be answered by a thorough review of the medical records/test results and a medical determination as to whether any of the injuries are permanent or ongoing, and if ongoing, how long they will last and how the ordinary life of the injured person is being effected.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 10/18/2013
    Hobbs Law Group
    Hobbs Law Group | Kristin E. Hobbs
    There are too many factors involved to be able to give you a decent answer. Your best bet in making sure your receive all the compensation you deserve is to retain a personal injury attorney to represent you. They will be able to claim your past and future medical bills, past and future lost earning, lost earning capacity (this is separate from simple future lost earnings), past and future pain and suffering, etc. The insurance company will have an attorney so you should also.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    James E. Hasser, Jr. P.C.
    James E. Hasser, Jr. P.C. | Jim Hasser
    Case values vary widely from case to case and place to place. It is the job of an experienced injury lawyer to evaluate a claim.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    The Lariscy Law Firm, PC
    The Lariscy Law Firm, PC | Joseph E. Lariscy, III
    Don't handle this yourself. An insurance company has a team of attorneys behind them and are know automobile accident law inside and out. They assume you do not, and will use this to their advantage to devalue your claim. If you want the maximum value out of your claim, you need legal representation.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    Belushin Law Firm, P.C.
    Belushin Law Firm, P.C. | Vel Belushin
    Pain and suffering couldn't even be calculated at this point if you just had the accident you don't probably know the extent of your injuries. Don't negotiate with an insurance company on your own.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    Candiano Law Office
    Candiano Law Office | Charles J. Candiano
    You will NEVER receive fair value for your injuries or those sustained by your niece unless you hire an experienced personal injury attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    E. Ray Critchett, LLC
    E. Ray Critchett, LLC | Ray Critchett
    Best advice is to wait to ensure that you and the children are OK. It is too early to try and settle your case or to put a value on it. If you and/or they are still injured, get the treatment you need and focus on getting back to pre-collision status. Ensure that the insurance carrier replaces the car seats and takes care of your car. They can and should do that NOW. You can wait on the injury portion of the case until you and the children know that you have fully recovered. There is no rush to settle that part of the claim if the accident just happened a few days ago.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    Pete Leehey Law Firm, P.C.
    Pete Leehey Law Firm, P.C. | Pete Leehey
    You should never consider settlement until all of your injuries have been fully treated. It is usually in the insurance company's best interest to settle cases quickly, before you truly know the extent of your injuries. Once you have been fully treated for your condition, you should talk with an experienced personal injury lawyer before settling with the insurance company.
    Answer Applies to: Iowa
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
    Two weeks since the accident. You wouldn't have any idea what your claim is worth .after you are fully well, fully back to normal, and after you know all your damages you then should consult a lawyer about your case. You are trying hard to jazz it up with all this "severe" stuff and "flashbacks" if you had a severe injury would could not be well in 2 weeks. And if you have flashbacks which I doubt, you wont get a buck on that count unless you have a doctor testify for you medically which I doubt any one of them would.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    Johnson & Johnson Law Firm, PLLC | Richard Johnson
    Clear liability on the L turning car. No fault on you. You should not be in any rush to try to resolve your bodily injury claim with the insurer for the at fault driver. You need to have consistent follow up with your doctor, and make sure that you are getting the treatment you need. In this regard, hopefully, you had PIP coverage on your car, or you have other insurance, so pay your bills as you go along through your treatment course. The insurer for the at fault driver is NOT going to pay your bills as you go along. It wants to cut you ONE check at the end of the case and have you sign a Release. The important thing is that you get the treatment you need. Don't let there be gaps in treatment / doctor therapy visits. No NO Shows at treatment providers. Many people feel like they can do these claims on their own. Some can but most can't. You should strongly consider consulting with a lawyer in your area who handles injury cases. You have no leverage with the at fault insurer without a lawyer. I always tell people even after you pay the lawyer, and the bills / insurance paybacks, you are still going to do better NET in your pocket with a lawyer than if you try to do the claim yourself.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    Law Offices of Ronald A. Steinberg & Associates | Ronald A. Steinberg, BA, MA, JD
    Your case is worth what you can prove to a jury, taking into consideration how the accident occurred, the type of injury, the method of treating, the length of treatment, and all residuals, together with the impact on your life.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 10/18/2013
    Padove Law | Burton A. Padove
    There is no simple answer to what is an accurate amount for pain and suffering. I can tell you, that one factor is the extent and duration of the pain and suffering. Your injury is new and it has not resolved. It is too soon to evaluate your claim or to settle your injury case. Hire an attorney who is trained in obtaining the maximum recovery for you.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 10/18/2013
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