If you were injured in a car accident in Virginia, you might be struggling physically, emotionally, and financially. Virginia law allows you to recover any losses that stemmed from the accident if you were injured due to another driver’s negligence.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you may wonder, how much is the average car accident settlement in Virginia? The settlement amount for each car accident depends on several factors specific to the facts of each case. In this article, we will discuss car accident settlements in Virginia and explain the car accident lawsuit basics that impact the value of each case. This way, you can be more fully informed before bringing your legal claim.
However, if you were involved in a car accident, it is best to seek the advice of a seasoned lawyer. At the Law Firm of Carlton F. Bennett, P.L.L.C., our principal attorney, Carlton Bennett, has over 47 years of experience helping car accident victims get the justice and compensation they deserve. His award-winning practice tirelessly and vigorously advocates for the rights of injured victims. Contact our hard-working, skilled advocate today.
Virginia Car Accident Statistics
In 2021, there were a staggering 118,498 crashes in Virginia, with 6,749 related to alcohol. Another 24,620 were caused by speeding. Even more concerning, 5,583 crashes involved a passenger not wearing a seatbelt. Wearing a seatbelt is one of the best ways to avoid serious injury or death in a car accident. In fact, one study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration showed that 2,549 lives could have been saved in 2020 had the occupants in car crashes been wearing a seatbelt.
The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles also studied the number of distracted driving-related crashes in Virginia in 2021. Their report showed that around 17.7% of crashes were caused by distracted drivers. A significant number of these distracted driving crashes involved someone who was texting and driving. Our firm has seen many accidents that could have been avoided if the at-fault driver had refrained from texting and driving.
What Is a Car Accident Settlement?
When you initiate a claim against an at-fault party in a car accident, you’re demanding that they compensate you for the damages you incurred due to the accident. You may file your claim directly with an insurance company, or you may have to take steps to file your claim in court.
In any event, a car accident claim can proceed in one of two ways. The claim can be settled outside of court, or you’ll need to fight your claim in court to recover your damages. Typically, however, most lawsuits are settled outside of court so that each party can avoid the time and cost of going to trial.
A settlement is an agreement between the parties to resolve the issues in the claim. In a car accident case, a settlement is generally an agreement by the accused party to pay the victim a certain amount of money. The victim agrees to drop their case against the accused party in exchange. Typically, settlement amounts are less than what the victim could have potentially recovered at trial. However, there are many issues with going to trial, including the expenses and time involved. Thus, most parties opt to settle their cases to avoid lengthy litigation.
What Is the Average Settlement for a Car Accident in Virginia?
Auto accident settlements in Virginia vary greatly. Each case is highly unique, and there are a lot of factors to consider when determining a settlement amount. Any discussion of an average car accident settlement often doesn’t account for the differences and factors of each individual case. Understanding the factors that determine the amount of a car accident settlement will help you better estimate your potential settlement. Here are six factors that may impact your car accident settlement amount:
- The severity of the accident;
- The extent of your injuries;
- Who was at fault in the accident;
- The types of damages to which you are entitled;
- Future medical costs;
- Your attorney’s skill and experience; and
- The strength of your witnesses and evidence.
It is important to note that this list is not exhaustive. If you have questions about the individual factors that will impact your potential settlement amount, speak with a lawyer.
Types of Damages In A Car Accident Case
Generally, there are two types of damages in a car accident case: economic and non-economic damages. Below, we go into more detail about each type.
Economic damages, also called pecuniary damages, compensate the injured party for their losses that stemmed directly from the accident. These damages are unlike non-economic damages because they are easily quantifiable in terms of their monetary value. Some examples of economic damages include:
- Property damage costs,
- Hospital bills,
- Doctor’s visit costs,
- Costs of medication,
- Costs of therapy, and
- Lost wages.
These types of damages are relatively easy to calculate.
Non-economic damages, or non-pecuniary damages, are a bit different from economic damages. Non-economic damages are harder to quantify than economic damages. In addition, these damages are often subjective in nature. Some examples of non-economic damages include:
- Pain and suffering,
- Emotional distress,
- Loss of consortium,
- Loss of enjoyment of life, and
- Permanent or temporary disfigurement.
Because these damages are subjective, you will want a seasoned attorney to help you estimate these damages. Also, at-fault parties often fight subjective losses such as these. An experienced attorney can fight for your non-pecuniary damages.
The Law Firm of Carlton F. Bennett, P.L.L.C., Is Here to Help
If you are overwhelmed with estimating your settlement amount in a car accident case, the Law Firm of Carlton F. Bennett, P.L.L.C., can help. Our attorney, Carlton F. Bennett, is an expert in personal injury cases. He has helped numerous car accident victims get the greatest amount of compensation possible. In addition, he is a nationally recognized lawyer who has won many awards, including being included on a list of the Best Lawyers in America.
In addition, because we know how expensive car accidents can be, we offer free, no-pressure consultations to all our potential clients. To contact our office to set up your free appointment, you can contact us online or by phone at 757-486-5454. There are important legal deadlines to meet in every car accident case, so please do not hesitate to reach out today.