How Much is an Average Car Accident Settlement in CT?
Car accidents are traumatic experiences, with consequences that extend well beyond the immediate health and safety of the occupants involved. Once the dust settles, you may have to deal with serious injuries that require months or years of physical therapy. You could be facing expensive car damage, with employment consequences. You could even be confronted by a personal injury case, or begin the process yourself or with a car accident lawyer in Connecticut.
If you’ve been in an auto accident in Connecticut, you may be curious about the average settlement amount. After all, an adequate settlement can provide you with much-needed financial relief if you’ve incurred severe injuries or property damage.
Let’s break down the average car accident settlement in CT, and then review what you can expect in the process.
Average Car Settlement Amounts
Nationwide, the average car accident settlement is $23,900. However, settlement amounts depend on the type of damages involved. For instance, in 2020, the average bodily injury claim was $20,235, while the average property damage claim was just $4,711.
The type of injuries you incur can also impact your settlement amount. For instance, neck and back injury settlements typically offer higher amounts, seeing as these injuries can cost more in medical expenses.
That said, averages don’t offer precise insight into what you’ll receive from your car accident settlement. Instead, your settlement amount will depend on the following factors:
- Severity and permanency of injuries
- Lost wages due to taking time away from work
- Cost of medical care, both now and in the future
- Property damage
- Car repair costs
- Pain and suffering
How Do Car Accident Settlements in CT Work?
The insurance claims process varies from state to state. Since Connecticut is an at-fault state, you’ll need to file a claim with the car insurance company of the driver who caused the accident. If you have policies that apply to your own economic damages, such as personal injury protection (PIP) or uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) coverage, you can file a claim with your car insurance company too.
Most car insurance companies prefer to settle quickly rather than go to court. In turn, a car accident victim receives a settlement offer shortly after filing the car accident claim.
The Pros and Cons of Accepting a Settlement
It can be difficult to know when to accept a car accident settlement. Like most decisions, there are benefits and drawbacks—especially when the settlement is offered quickly.
The benefits of a swift settlement include:
- Guaranteed compensation – Trials can be unpredictable. You never know how the jury and judge will view your car accident case. By accepting a settlement before the proceedings, you ensure you gain some compensation, rather than none at all.
- Fewer legal fees – Litigation can be expensive and time-consuming. By settling out of court, you can avoid the extra legal fees.
- Faster compensation – Settling can get you the money you need faster than going to court, enabling you to pay for your damages as soon as possible and preventing bills from piling up.
While settling has many benefits, you should keep in mind that you’ll have to waive your right to sue for additional damages. In turn, if your future medical care or lost wages exceed what you were awarded, you could end up in a difficult spot financially.
To ensure you receive a fair amount, it’s helpful to wait until you reach maximum medical improvement (MMI) before you accept a settlement offer. MMI means that you’ve fully recovered from the accident and have a clear picture of the ongoing medical treatment you’ll require.
What If You’re Partially At-Fault For The Accident?
Is CT a no-fault state? The short answer is no – Connecticut’s car insurance laws employ a modified comparative negligence system.
Here’s a translation: Connecticut drivers who are found to be over 51% at fault for an accident are responsible for paying other people's damages. CT car accident laws state that drivers who bear less than 51% of the responsibility for the accident may have their settlements adjusted according to their percentage of fault.
For example, if you’re found to be 10% responsible for the accident, you may only be able to receive 90% of the total damages you’d be entitled to otherwise.
How Are Car Settlement Amounts Determined?
Now that you understand how car accident settlements are determined, let’s review the steps involved in settling your claim:
- Follow-up on the medical care you need – First and foremost, you should get medical treatment for any injuries you incurred during the accident. Documenting your injuries is the best way to ensure you’re compensated appropriately.
- Calculate your property damage – Likewise, if your vehicle was damaged in the accident, you can request a quote from a reputable auto repair shop.
- Hire a legal representative – If you try to settle with car insurance companies on your own, you may not receive as much money as you could if you have a legal expert on your side. Your car accident lawyer can also help you better understand the statute of limitations in CT and other factors.
- Allow your legal representative to investigate the case – During a personal injury lawsuit, it’s important to provide your legal team with as much evidence as possible, starting with the accident’s police report, photos, videos, and witness testimonies. If you have to take time off work due to the accident, you should also ask for documentation from your employer.
- Enlist the support of expert witnesses – Some car accidents can harm you financially for years to come—possibly for the rest of your life. If you’re dealing with permanent injuries or employment disruptions, expert witnesses can assess their financial damage to ensure you receive fair compensation.
Resolve Your Car Accident Claim With Mighty
After dealing with a car accident, you deserve support. Mighty can help you navigate the CT settlements process from start to finish.
Our all-in-one personal injury services include affordable legal representation, accident-related medical treatment, and help finding financial support if needed. In turn, we can help you recover holistically from your Connecticut car accident.
Are you ready to put the car accident behind you? Discover how Mighty can make it happen today.
Forbes. Typical Car Accident Settlement Amounts (2022).
LegalMatch. What is Maximum Medical Improvement?
FindLaw. Connecticut Negligence Laws.
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