I’m Todd Peterson and I have been handling back injury and car accident injury cases from our Portland offices for many years now.
I’ve settled or argued nearly a thousand personal injury cases, achieving millions of dollars for our clients.
People who have a personal injury claim usually want to know what kind of back injury settlement or other car accident insurance settlement amounts they can expect to get.
How Much Can You Get?
I can tell you that there is no one amount you can get for a certain type of case and that you can not use a simple formula to find out how much your claim is worth.
How much the case is worth is most often determined when the insurance company adjuster and the attorney try to predict what an imaginary jury would award the client. The attorney and the adjuster do this after all the evidence is in and they have determined what kind of witness the client might make in court.
The two then come to some agreement, with the permission of the client, as to what the settlement amount will be. Without an attorney, the insurance company will try to convince the accident victim that their claim isn’t worth much and will often give a “take it or leave it” offer. A personal injury attorney knows from a lot of experience how much a case is worth.
The attorney also has negotiating skills and the threat of a lawsuit. The lawyer has it in their interest to get the highest amount since they will earn more if they get more for you.
For example, we have had people call us after settling a case with the insurance company on their own.
They got $500 for pain and suffering, a common initial lowball offer by the insurance companies. Say, for example, I estimated that I would have gotten a low total settlement of $5,000 for pain and suffering for the same claim.
I would have gotten a third for fees or $1666 and about $60 for costs, but the client would have gotten $3273 or $2773 more than what they got handling the case themselves.
Each case will vary, of course.
How much a client will receive for a back injury settlement depends upon many factors such as the severity of the injury, how bad the impact of the car crash was, the length of treatment for the injury, the amount of permanent tissue damage done, how much work was missed, how much pay was lost, how it affected the lifestyle and the ability to work of the individual, and what kind of job they had if it was permanently lost due to the injuries.
At Peterson Law Offices, we have had back injury settlements for pain and suffering between ranging from $900 to $115,000. Again these amounts are tied to the above factors and their interplay.
What Else Matters?
Other factors such as who was at fault in the accident can be important in determining the settlement amount sometimes. For example: a person who was not wearing a seat belt is considered partly negligent in some states even if they get rear ended by another car.
The highest injury settlement I have ever heard of was in England for a woman who got fibromyalgia and won 1.25 million pounds, or roughly 3 million dollars in 1996. This is the world record, as far as I know, and is a very unusual case.
Other kinds of settlements can be much larger, and I have had car accident insurance and homeowners insurance injury settlements overall that settled for much higher than the back injury settlements mentioned above, including a number of wrongful death cases.
Other kinds of car accident insurance settlements depend on the same factors that apply to back injury settlements, where there is only soft tissue damage.
These more serious accident settlements also depend on the amount of insurance available. Sometimes issues such as how a person’s appearance is affected, if there is scarring or disfigurement, can affect the final pain and suffering settlement or judgment received. These settlement amounts may also be reliant on whether or not future surgery is recommended by the victim’s doctor.
What else can I help you with?
- Read my 9 page guide to osteoarthritis and car accident injuries
- Read what I’ve written about diminished value?
- My thoughts on PIP – Personal Injury Protection
I want to help you get all the money you deserve for your accident, so please begin by filling out this short form.
Please specify whether your accident happened in Oregon or Washington State, and give some brief details in the comments.
After sending the form, you’ll be taken to a second page where if you wish, you can share all the details of your accident in one convenient place.
Once I see your information, I’ll get back to you as quickly as I can. If you can’t wait, or you want to speak to someone immediately, phone 503-280-0888 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.