The first thing our new clients ask us is how much their car accident case is worth. We don’t blame them. The reason you hire a car accident lawyer in Greenville is so you can sue the other driver. As much as you may want justice, what you really want is money. There’s no reason why you should have to pay medical bills for an accident you didn’t cause. Nor should you have to pay to fix your car. Your personal injury lawyer in Greenville, South Carolina will fight to get you as much money as possible.
Of course, every case is different. It would be impossible for any lawyer to tell you how much your case is worth without meeting with you first. They need to review the police report and your medical records. This is the only way they can see how bad the crash was. The police report will also help them figure out who caused the crash.
Here, we’ll talk about the different types of damages you can demand in your lawsuit. Just keep in mind – most car accident lawsuits settle out of court. This means you’ll likely walk away with a lot less than your full demand. However, it’s better to get a lump sum upfront rather than a judgment that never gets paid.
There Are 2 Different Types of Damages in a Car Accident Case
There are two main types of damages. The first type is economic damages. These represent the things you can put a price tag on. An example of this would be property damage. You can show mechanic’s bills to show how much it costs to get your car fixed. Another example would be medical bills.
The second type is called non-economic damages. These include anything that can’t be proven with a receipt. This would include things like pain and suffering. It would also include punitive damages. However, most car accident cases don’t warrant punitive damages. They are only allotted in cases where the judge wants to punish the defendant. You certainly won’t receive them as part of your car accident settlement.
It’s important to point out that it is very rare for a judge to order punitive damages. They’re usually granted in cases involving big companies that hurt customers or large groups of people. They are also limited to cases where the court thinks punishment will deter other people from doing the same thing in the future.
Damages in a Typical Car Accident Case
If you’re hurt in a car crash, you should be entitled to damages. Your car accident lawyer in Greenville will be able to tell you what kind of damages you can demand. The types of damages you may be entitled to collect include the following:
- Medical bills – The defendant should be held accountable for any medical bills you accrue after the crash. This includes ambulance bills, hospital bills, and prescription medications. They are also liable for any future medical bills you’ll encounter. Your doctor can testify to any future medical treatment you’ll need. Your car accident lawyer in Greenville will then submit proof of how much this treatment will cost.
- Property damage – You can demand compensation for any mechanic’s bills. If your car was totaled in the accident, then they’ll have to pay you fair market value for your vehicle. This doesn’t mean they have to pay to replace your car. You can’t expect them to pay you more than what the car was worth at the time of the accident.
- Lost wages – If you miss more than a week or two from work, you can demand compensation. You wouldn’t have missed time had it not been for the accident. And if the defendant caused the crash, they should be held responsible.
- Lost future income – Some people are hurt so badly that they can never work again. If this happens to you, then you may demand compensation for future lost income. Your attorney will determine the difference between what you would’ve earned and what you’ll actually earn. Then they’ll multiply this amount by the number of years before you reach retirement age.
- Pain and Suffering – Almost every car accident lawsuit involved a demand for pain and suffering. These damages are meant to compensate you for the physical and mental anguish caused by the car wreck.
As you can see, there are several different types of damages. Not all of them will apply to your car accident case. Your personal injury attorney in Greenville, South Carolina will determine which ones you can demand. They’ll also determine the amount you intend to claim.
Your Damages Will Be Reduced if You Were Partially at Fault
It is rare to find a car accident case where only one driver is at fault. Even though the other driver may be primarily responsible for the crash, you probably contributed somewhat. In South Carolina, if you’re found to be partially responsible for a car accident case, your damages will be reduced by your percentage of fault. For example, if your damages are $300,000 and you’re found to be 30% at fault, they’ll be reduced by $90,000.
Of course, this only applies if the defendant’s lawyer can prove you were partially at fault. It’s not a guarantee that you’ll be found partially at fault. Even if you are, your attorney may be able to get the percentage reduced. This way, you lose as little money as possible.
Reach Out to an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer in Greenville
If you’ve recently been involved in a motor vehicle accident, you probably want to make the other driver pay. You can certainly try to do this on your own. However, chances are, you’re not all that familiar with the legal process. This is why most accident victims call a skilled personal injury lawyer in Greenville, South Carolina when they’re hurt in a car wreck.
The main difference between you and an attorney is that they know the law. They also know how to deal with the big insurance companies. They know how to negotiate and will fight to get you as much money as possible.
All you have to do is call and schedule your first consultation. Our firm doesn’t charge potential clients for this initial meeting. We like to give you a chance to talk to an attorney before you make any big decisions. Since the consultation is free, you don’t have to worry about paying anything upfront. In fact, you won’t pay anything until your case is resolved.