What Is the Average Settlement for a Minor Car Accident?

A car with two dollar signs on it, representing the average settlement for a minor car accident.

The settlement value for a minor car accident may only be, on average, $15,000 to $30,000. However, that does not mean that is all your claim is worth.

You may believe your settlement will not be large when you are involved in a minor car accident. However, the many expenses that come with even a simple, minor car accident can be more extensive than you realize. In fact, you may have some longer-term effects that impact your daily life for some time after the accident.

While there is no single average settlement for a minor car accident, our team at Text Kevin Accident Attorneys is here to help you navigate the specifics of your minor car accident. We can determine how severe your accident is, what your claim may be worth, and what we can do to maximize your compensation. Rather than simply pursuing the average settlement offer, let us help you get the best possible settlement for your claim.

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Average Settlement Results Vary Drastically Across the U.S.

While many people want to know, on average, what their settlement is worth, the truth is that there is no simple answer to this. Every case is different, and every case is calculated according to the specifics of the accident. However, some information can give us a better idea of what the average settlement may look like.

As of 2024, Forbes has collected several data points about car accident settlements, including surveys from several institutes and organizations that collect this data. For example, a survey from the Insurance Information Institute gathered in their report places the average injury settlement amount at just over $20,000 and the average property damage amount at $4,700. However, on a survey presented by the news source, most respondents receive less than $10,000.

The average settlement for a car accident depends on many factors, from state laws to the severity of your injuries. It can be difficult to estimate how much these losses will be valued until your car accident attorney has an opportunity to speak with you about your case. Fortunately, we are ready to take on your case and calculate exactly what your claim is worth.

Pro Tip
As you navigate your claim, take extensive notes about your expenses, injury recovery, and emotional well-being. These notes can help your attorney provide a more comprehensive view of your claim’s worth so we can better estimate your settlement value.

Your Settlement Amount May Be Impacted By Case-Specific Factors

As you pursue compensation for a car accident settlement of any size, the details of your case will inform the value of your settlement. However, these details can have major impacts on the value of your claim. Based on these factors, you may sometimes have a much more significant claim than you realize.

Unfortunately, personal injury victims unaware of their case’s value may struggle to identify these factors and raise their settlement accordingly. If you are unprepared, you may receive a much smaller settlement than you need and pay for many of these expenses out of pocket. Talk to us about details like those below to learn more about how we can help your claim succeed.

Your Insurance Policy

California is a fault state, meaning that, according to California Code 1714, if a driver is responsible for causing an accident, they may be held financially liable for any involved parties’ injuries. Because of this, drivers are generally required to have liability insurance, which pays car accident victims when their policyholder is at fault for the accident. However, the amount of coverage you have and the accident’s severity can lead to damages not fully covered by the insurance policy.

If you are struck by a driver who does not have coverage that extends enough to cover you, you may struggle to get a settlement offer that meets your needs. In these cases, a settlement offer for minor accidents may not be enough, and you may need to file a lawsuit to get the total amount you are due. We offer support during each part of this process, so reach out if you need help.

The Severity of Your Injuries

How severely you are injured makes a massive difference in the value of your claim. The more treatment and care you need, the more expensive your claim will be. That can turn what seems to be a minor car accident into a much more costly experience.

Remember that insurance companies may try to dispute the treatment you need. For example, they may claim that you did not need physical therapy for a back or spinal cord injury. In these cases, you may need us to help defend your case and prove you are due the compensation you have pursued.

Liability for Your Injuries

Sometimes, the at-fault party may claim that you are partially at fault for the accident. Unfortunately, also under California Code 1714, you may be held responsible if you are partially at fault for your accident. For example, if you are found 15% at fault for your accident, you may only receive 85% of the compensation you seek.

To maximize the value of your settlement amount, you may need help from an attorney to argue against accusations of partial fault. For example, if the at-fault party claims you were driving distracted during the accident, you may seek witness testimony or other evidence that shows you were not. We can pursue your best options for action.

The Extent of Your Damages

Even in a minor accident, you may be surprised by how severe your injuries are. Even a minor accident can cause broken bones, whiplash, and severe lacerations that may need ongoing care. For example, a laceration to the face may cause significant disfigurement that leads to surgery to repair the scarring.

While this level of damage is not present in every minor car accident in California, the injuries you face can vary significantly depending on the specifics of your accident. Because of this, it can be difficult to give a specific, detailed average settlement. We instead focus on the details of your specific settlement and what your maximum compensation may be.

Whether You Had Pre-existing Injuries

In some cases, not all of your injuries came specifically from the accident you were just in. You may have an existing or even chronic condition that impacts your health and ability level. For example, a previous injury may have already been present, and it led to a much worse outcome from the injuries caused by your accident.

In these cases, we may need to focus on maximizing your compensation against the insurance companies’ disputes that your pre-existing injuries cause pain. This may include extensive medical exams and other care. We are prepared to pursue compensation that meets your needs regardless of your pre-existing injuries.

Pre-existing conditions can significantly impact the severity of your claim, but that does not mean you should settle for less just because you have one. Your doctor can help you get an accurate idea of the impact of your pre-existing injuries or conditions, which can help you more easily fight for the compensation you are due.

Severe Injuries Can Impact Your Claim’s Value

As you navigate your car accident, what seemed initially like a minor car accident may be much more serious than you realize, and in some cases, what seemed like a minor accident may become a wrongful death claim. In these cases, we may pursue further compensation to meet the needs of these more serious injuries. Below are just a few of the many severe injuries you may have suffered that can drastically increase the value of your settlement amount:

If you or a loved one has suffered any of the catastrophic injuries above, you may need to factor in the current and future damages you have suffered and the treatment you may need. For example, a spinal cord injury may need ongoing treatment for the rest of your life, which can greatly increase the value of your claim. If you have any doubts or questions about the severity of your injuries, contact us to learn more as we calculate the specifics of your damages.

Pro Tip

If you struggle to calculate and maintain records on your injury recovery process, do not hesitate to ask an advocate for help. This person can help you keep track of these details even when you are in too much pain or distress to communicate your feelings properly.

Details of Your Claim Can Impact Your Settlement Value

As you pursue compensation for a minor car accident, remember that your actions can also impact it. If you take the wrong steps in the wake of your car accident, for example, you may struggle to take action and get the total value of your claim. Fortunately, we are here to help you avoid missteps like these.

For example, whether you pursued medical care right away after the accident can impact the value of your claim. The longer you wait, the more likely the insurance company is to seek ways to deny or diminish the value of your case. That leaves you paying out of pocket for many expenses that would have otherwise been covered.

The amount and type of treatment you receive may also be under suspicion by the insurance companies. For example, they may claim that you did not need the full scope of the physical therapy you received for your injuries. Fortunately, we can help you dispute arguments like these and get the full value of your compensation.

Knowing the Impact of Your Damages Can Help You Navigate a Claim

As you pursue compensation that covers the entirety of your minor car accident claim, you may find yourself surprised by the impact of certain damages. However, understanding how much these damages can impact your future can help you better understand the total value of your compensation. Below are a few of the most commonly pursued damages in an accident like yours.

Hospital Bills for Severe Injuries

As you pursue compensation for your car accident claim, one of the most common sources of debt that comes from an accident comes from your medical treatment. Car accidents can have a massive impact on your life, especially with regard to your health. Those impacts can accrue as huge medical bills that can be difficult to overcome.

Your hospital bill costs should also cover the value of your future damages. For example, many severe injuries require multiple surgeries, meaning you may need to schedule treatment for months or years in the future. You may need to contact us for help navigating the current value of your medical care and estimating your future bills.

Lost Income and Earning Capacity

As you navigate your car accident claim, you may also struggle with these bills because of your time away from work. After a severe injury, you may be unable to work for some time or need to take extra time off to secure transportation after your car is damaged. This time away from work can add up, especially for those who are not salaried and may be severely impacted by a loss of work hours.

Likewise, we also focus on how much of your earning capacity has been lost. For example, in a severe accident, you may be unable to work. For younger people, especially those just starting their careers, that can be devastating, and it can lead to compensation that covers the potential decades of missed opportunity because of the injuries.

Pain and Suffering Damages

While we are dedicated to helping our clients get coverage for their many expenses, these are not the only damages you may suffer following a minor car accident. You may also have grounds for non-economic damages under California Code 1431.2, which covers the intangible losses you have experienced during this accident. For example, even in a minor accident, you may have to navigate emotional trauma, anxiety, and physical pain.

The biggest difficulty in calculating your pain and suffering damages is that they are intangible. Rather than having a set value, like your hospital bills, these damages must be calculated using specialized calculators to help you identify your case’s value. Our firm offers these tools and much more.

If you are unsure whether our personal injury attorneys can get the results you want for these damages, you can always check out our case results and testimonials page. We want our clients to know what to expect, so we offer information about past successes so our clients understand our capabilities, especially from attorney Kevin Crockett.

Reach Out for Compassionate, Thorough Car Accident Attorneys Who Can Help Your Claim Succeed

Following even a minor car accident, you may be surprised at the level of damage you are dealing with. You may see worse injuries than expected, and the cost of repairing those injuries can add up. Between your time off work and your hospital or chiropractor bills, you may find yourself in a difficult financial situation.

At Text Kevin Accident Attorneys, we work hard to help our clients get more than the average settlement, even for a minor car accident. No matter how simple or small your damages may seem, our team is here to help you pursue compensation that meets your many needs following your accident. To learn more about our services, you can contact our team by calling or completing our online contact form to get started with a free consultation.

Kevin Crockett

Kevin Crockett

Kevin Crockett is an award-winning personal injury lawyer who understands the impact an accident can have on someone’s life. That’s why he aggressively fights for each of his clients.

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