What is the average settlement for a car accident in California? The most truthful answer to this question is the proverbial “it depends.” There are just too many factors involved to give a clear answer to this question. However, there is one almost certain fact:
This may not seem fair to everyone but it is the reality of the situation. Luckily, many law firms, including ours, will take car accident cases on contingency, assuming it is a solid case. This means you do not pay anything upfront and you do not pay any legal fees unless the case is successfully settled. Then, the fees are typically based on the percentage of the settlement. However, even with these fees, you can expect to receive a much larger check if you have an experienced attorney working for you. Incidentally, almost all car accident cases are settled without going to court and the right attorney can really take the headache of dealing with this situation away from you.
Most people do not understand the law or “the system” well enough to handle a case on their own. However, this is actually not the top reason why your settlement will be much lower if you try to handle the case on your own. The top reason is that insurance companies simply will not work fairly with individuals who are not represented. Again, this may not seem fair to everyone but it is the reality of the situation. Representatives who work for insurance companies are trained to pay out as little as they possibly can. They play all kinds of unscrupulous tricks to avoid paying what you deserve to be paid. If you don’t have a good personal injury attorney working for you, with experience in this specific area of the law, the insurance companies will surely take advantage of this fact.
If you and/or a loved one has been the victim of the careless actions of another driver, you need to protect your rights by getting quality legal representation. You need an attorney who knows exactly how to deal with the insurance company of the driver who caused the accident and potentially other parties involved such as municipalities if you were hit by a commercial driver. You deserve to be compensated fully. Don’t sell yourself short. You are not only entitled to be reimbursed for the damage to your vehicle and for your current medical expenses, you may also be entitled to be compensated for future medical expenses, time missed from work, future time missed from work, and for pain and suffering. An experienced personal injury attorney will know how to protect not only your current rights but also your future rights. Car accident victims who attempt to represent themselves often don’t even know how to properly address the issue of future rights and the insurance companies aren’t going to volunteer this information. No matter how friendly they act, they are not on your side so don’t be fooled for a minute.
In California, you have two years to file a lawsuit. However, the sooner you hire an attorney to file a claim, the more chance you have for getting a bigger settlement. If you and/or a loved one has been involved in a car accident due to the fault of another, it is best not to even talk with the insurance companies and allow your attorney to do this on your behalf. If you have already done so, it is never too late to help your case by hiring an attorney and letting them handle the case for you going forward. You are almost guaranteed to get a bigger settlement if you do because you will be treated more fairly and your rights will be protected.
At the May Firm, we have won many large settlements on behalf of our clients. We have many years of experience with settling car accident cases. We take cases on a contingency basis (you don’t pay us until we settle your case) and we offer a free initial consultation. We can discuss your case and the potential settlement value of your claim. Call our California car accident attorneys at (805) 980-7758 to set up an appointment.