If my husband was involved in accident after a van made a U-turn in road in front of him and what injured, what is a fair settlement?

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If my husband was involved in accident after a van made a U-turn in road in front of him and what injured, what is a fair settlement?

The driver of the van was charged with the accident. My husband was injured involving his neck and back, taken to ER and released after X-rays. He continues to suffer from injuries received in accident. The insurance co. wants to settle for $22,000 which would mean he will pay Medicare and the medigap insurer back for the amount that was paid for his care. My husband feels the amount is too low considering the suffering he continues to endure. How do we know if this is a fair settlement?

Asked on May 14, 2015 under Personal Injury, South Carolina

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

The amount of the settlement should include compensation for the medical bills, compensation for pain and suffering which is an amount in addition to the medical bills based on the medical reports which document the nature and extent of the injury and there should also be compensation for wage loss.

Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  Compensation for pain and suffering is not based on any mathematical formula, but on the information in the medical reports documenting the nature and extent of the injury.  Since your husband is still having pain, additional compensation for pain and suffering in an amount to compensate for residual problems should be included in the total settlement.

Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.

Since your husband is dissatisfied with the settlement offer, he can reject the settlement offer and file a lawsuit for negligence against the at-fault party.  Unfortunately, insurance carriers routinely require reimbursement as part of the settlement.  The amount of compensation your husband receives should leave him with a sufficient amount after accounting for reimbursement.

If the case is NOT settled with the at-fault party's insurance carrier, the lawsuit for negligence against the at-fault party and registered owner of the vehicle must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or your husband will lose his rights forever in the matter.


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