Being involved in a car accident is never convenient or fun. Even if you were lucky enough to walk away from the accident without suffering any injuries, you still may be in a position in which you can sue the at-fault driver for the accident. You will have to prove negligence on their behalf which can be difficult, especially without any injuries to show.
Putting Your Pain and Suffering Case Together
Whether you’re filing a car insurance claim or a car accident lawsuit, it’s not usually a good strategy to just pull a “pain and suffering” figure out of thin air and leave it at that. While your medical bills, lost income, and other financial losses are easy to quantify with records, your pain and suffering claim is largely a story that you, as the claimant, need to tell:
- What did you experience during the accident, and in the following days, physically and mentally?
- How have your injuries impacted your life?
- What’s different now, post-accident, in terms of what you’re unable to do?
All of these effects and more should be described in detail, so that the insurance adjuster or the court gets a complete, personal picture of your pain and suffering in the wake of the accident.
You might even want to keep a car accident journal, in which you document the effects of your injuries on your life, and describe any other adverse effects of the accident. You can include this kind of journal along with any demand letter you send to the insurance company or to the other driver’s lawyer, or use it to help make your court case if you file a car accident lawsuit.
Is it Worth It to Pursue a Claim After a Minor Car Accident?
Before pursuing a car accident claim, it’s worth considering the seriousness of the injury caused by the accident, in light of the time and effort it will take to make a claim. Dealing with a car insurance company can be a hassle, especially if it’s the other driver’s carrier and things start to get adversarial.
If you are unable to resolve your claim with the insurance company, you will probably need to file a lawsuit. Litigation can be expensive, time-consuming, and stressful. In addition, you will likely have to give a deposition. Depositions can be grueling.
Before making a claim, or filing a lawsuit, it’s worth considering whether the injury is worth it. If the injury is a bruised knee, or a slightly sprained ankle, it may not be worth the hassle. Of course, if you’ve got significant medical bills and your life has been adversely affected by the accident, there is no question that making a claim is the right move.
No Pain and Suffering In a No-Fault Insurance Claim
Most states in the U.S. follow a standard fault-based liability system after a car accident, where the person who caused the accident is deemed negligent and is held financially responsible for all reasonable damages resulting from the crash.
However, there are around twelve states that follow a “no fault” insurance system. In these states, you cannot make a personal injury claim—and you can’t collect compensation for pain and suffering—unless your medical bills cross a certain dollar amount threshold which varies from state to state. Other states require that the claim meet a “serious injury” threshold, which also is defined differently from state to state.
For the rest of the states, standard rules apply. In other words, as long as you can prove someone’s negligence caused you harm, you can recover compensation from that person (usually through his or her car insurance policy), including pain and suffering damages.
Should I Hire An Attorney?
Navigating the complexities of working with an insurance company over a car accident claim without injury can be difficult and time consuming. Our experienced car accident legal experts know exactly how to navigate this situation. Call us today for a no-cost car accident evaluation.
Best Personal Injury Attorney for Car Accident in Houston
If you or someone you love has suffered an injury, experienced loss of income, or are unable to work due to a car accident, you can benefit from the services of a Houston car accident expert in your personal injury case. Whether you missed work due to an injury or due to not having access to a vehicle, Attorney Beverly R. Caruthers can help you!
Our team works hard to bring the most efficient and practical solutions to your car accident case. Beverly R. Caruthers proudly serves and defends the Greater Houston area including but not limited to Baytown, Conroe, Crosby, Humble, Huntsville, Lake Jackson, Missouri City, Pasadena, Spring, Tomball.
Our legal team is bilingual and offers Spanish speaking legal counsel for all of our clients. If you need legal representation following an incident don’t hesitate to contact Beverly R. Caruthers Law Office!