Average Settlement for Car Accident Back Injury
Neck and back injuries are common after a car accident, but they can be difficult to prove. Insurance adjusters may not believe that your pain is real or caused by the accident.
Many people with neck and back injuries struggle to get the compensation they deserve because insurance companies don't believe their injuries are real. It can lead to long, drawn-out legal battles that can take years to resolve.
At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyer LLC, our experienced personal injury attorneys help you get the settlement you deserve for your neck or back injury. We have a proven track record of success in getting our clients the money they need for medical treatment and missed income.
Contact our car accident lawyers today at (888) 424-5757 to explore your legal options. We offer free, no-obligation consultations to help you understand your rights and determine if we can assist with your personal injury case. All sensitive and confidential information is kept strictly private through an attorney-client relationship.
National Statistics on Neck and Back Injuries Sustained in Car Accidents
Over the years, car accident-related neck and back injuries have decreased. In 2019, an estimated 2.5 million people were injured in motor vehicle accidents in the United States. Approximately 20 percent (500,000) suffered a neck and back injury.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were 6,296,000 car accidents in the United States in 2017. Of those, there were 2,734,000 injuries and 37,133 fatalities. Approximately 11 percent of car crash victims suffered some form of injury.
The NHTSA has also revealed that approximately 27 percent of people injured in car crashes in 2017 suffered neck and back injuries. It is estimated that these injuries cost the economy an estimated $18.6 billion each year in medical bills and lost productivity.
Finally, the average back or neck injury settlement amount is between $20,000 and $50,000. However, this can vary depending on the severity of your injuries and other factors.
Types of Neck and Back Injuries You Can Include in Your Claim
We all take our necks and backs for granted—until they hurt. Injuries to the neck and back often occur in traumatic events such as slips, falls, and auto accidents.
The body can become out of alignment when the head strikes an object during the accident, causing long-term neck and back pain.
Common types of car accident neck and back injuries include:
Whiplash is the most common type of neck injury sustained in an auto accident. It occurs when the head is suddenly jerked forward and then back again. Whiplash injury can cause pain, stiffness, and headaches.
A herniated disc occurs when the gel-like center of a spinal disc ruptures through a tear in the outer layer, causing mild to severe pain and tingling in the neck or back.
Sprain / Strain Injury
This type of injury is caused by overuse, impact with an object or repetitive motion. The symptoms can be similar to whiplash, including pain, stiffness, numbness, and tingling.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injuries occur when there is damage to the vertebrae or spinal ligaments, causing a loss of movement and feeling below the area where the injury occurred. Depending on how severe your spinal cord injury is, you may experience many symptoms, including paralysis.
The spinal cord is a sensitive and crucial part of the body. Any type of injury to this area can significantly impact your life. That’s why it’s important to seek medical attention as soon as possible if you think you may have suffered a spinal cord injury in a car accident.
A bulging disc is similar to a herniated disc; however, it bulges out of the gel-like center breaking through the outer layer, causing pain, tingling, and numbness.
A broken back is a serious injury that can cause paralysis. It occurs when one or more vertebrae are fractured. The neck and spinal cord are connected by muscles and tendons that can also be injured.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Any injury to the muscles, ligaments, or tendons in the neck or spinal cord is considered a soft tissue injury. These injuries can range from mild to severe and cause pain, stiffness, bruising, and swelling.
Although these are the most common types of motor vehicle accident-related neck and back injuries, they are not the only ones you can include in your claim. Depending on how your accident occurred and the extent and severity of your injury, you may also have other options.
Treatment for Car Accident-Related Neck and Back Injury
The type of treatment you will need will depend on the severity of your injuries. For example:
- Whiplash can often be treated with over-the-counter pain medication, heating pads or ice packs, and chiropractic care.
- Herniated discs are often treated with medication and physical and massage therapy. Surgery may also be an option in some cases.
- Sprain/strain injuries can often be treated with anti-inflammatory medications or muscle relaxants. Physical therapy is usually recommended to help with the healing process.
- Spinal cord injuries often require surgery, physical and massage therapy, and rehabilitation.
- Broken backs usually require surgery to fix the broken bones. In some cases, a metal rod may be inserted to stabilize the spinal cord. Massage therapy will also be necessary to help you regain strength and mobility.
- Soft tissue injuries may require a combination of treatments, depending on the extent and severity. These can include massage therapy and chiropractic care.
If you have been injured in an automobile accident and are experiencing any of the above symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention immediately.
You may also consider filing a personal injury claim to receive compensation for your injuries. An experienced car accident lawyer can help you understand your options and get the compensation you deserve.
The Cost of Car Accident-Related Neck and Back Injuries
The cost of your car accident-related neck or back injuries can vary depending on the extent and severity of the injuries. Some of the expenses you may have include:
- Medical expenses, including doctor visits, medication, surgical procedures, etc.
- Rehabilitation and physical therapy
- Lost wages from time taken off work to recover
You may also have additional costs depending on the type of injury. For example, a spinal cord injury can require specialized equipment to aid with everyday tasks.
If you have been injured in an auto accident and face these or other related costs, speaking with an experienced personal injury lawyer is important. A lawyer can help you understand your options and fight for the compensation you deserve.
When to See a Doctor After Sustaining Neck and Back Injury in a Car Accident
If you are involved in an auto accident, it is important to seek medical attention, even if you don’t think you are injured. Many times, symptoms of injuries do not appear until days or even weeks after the accident.
If you are experiencing these or any other symptoms after a car accident, it is essential to seek medical attention. A doctor can perform a thorough physical exam and diagnostic tests to help determine the severity of your injuries.
After seeing a doctor, you should contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your options. A personal injury lawyer will be able to help you understand the value of your claim and negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf.
Symptoms of Neck and Back Injury Caused by Car Accidents
A neck and back injury caused by auto accidents can range from mild to severe. The most common symptoms include:
- Numbness or tingling in the arms or legs
- Muscle spasms
- Limited movement in the neck or back
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to see a doctor as soon as possible. Only a medical professional can properly diagnose your injuries and create a treatment plan.
Factors That May Impact Your Back Injury Settlement Case
Many factors can affect back injury settlement amount. Some of these include:
The Severity of Your Injuries
The most important factor in determining the back injury settlement amount is the severity of your injuries. If you have permanent damage or need long-term care, you will likely receive a higher settlement than someone with minor injuries.
The Location of Your Injuries
Another critical factor is the location of your injuries. Cervical spine injuries are usually more severe than those to the thoracic spine (upper back) or lumbar spine (lower back). The cervical spine controls our ability to move and feel, so damage in this area can be severe.
The Strength of Your Legal Claims and Evidence
The strength of your legal claims and evidence will also play a role in your back injury settlement amount. You will likely receive a higher settlement than someone with weaker evidence when you have a strong case to show that the at-fault driver violated your rights and caused your injuries, including eyewitness testimony or video footage.
How Long It Takes to Settle Your Back Injury Case
The time it takes to settle your case can also affect the back injury settlement amount. If you reach a settlement quickly, you may receive less money than someone who takes the case to trial and wins.
The Statute of Limitations
Another factor affecting your back injury settlement is the statute of limitations for your case. Each state has a different time limit for filing car accident claims, and if you miss this deadline, you will not be able to file a personal injury lawsuit in court.
Your Need for Ongoing Medical Care
The need for ongoing medical care is another important factor in determining the back injury settlement amount. In many cases, victims will require several surgeries and long-term rehabilitation. They may need assistance with basic needs such as using the toilet and getting dressed. Your medical costs might include:
- Doctor's visits
- CT scans and MRIs
- Prescription medications
- Physical therapy or rehabilitation
- In-home care, if needed
For these reasons, car accident victims with serious neck or back injuries often receive larger settlements than those with minor injuries. Considering these factors when determining whether or not to accept a settlement offer can help ensure that you get the money you need to pay for all the damages you have suffered.
Other Factors That May Affect Your Back Injury Settlement Amount
Other factors may affect your settlement amount, such as:
Insurance Policy Limits
The at-fault driver's insurance policy limits may affect the settlement amount in some cases. If the at-fault driver has limited insurance, you may not be able to recover the full amount you need. However, if they are uninsured or underinsured, you may be able to file a claim with your own insurance company or a particular type of lawsuit called an "uninsured motorist" (UM) claim.
Your Insurance Coverage
Your insurance coverage can also affect your back injury settlement. If you have personal injury protection (PIP) policy, your own insurance company may pay for your damages in some states.
If you are partially at fault for the accident, your back injury settlement may be reduced by your percentage of fault in some states. For example, if you are found to be 20% at fault, your settlement would be reduced by 20%.
The Amount of Money You Lost as a Result of Your Injury
Finally, another factor that may affect your back injury settlement amount is the amount of money you lost due to your injury.
If you cannot work or have significant medical bills, you will likely receive a higher settlement than someone who did not miss work and had minimal medical bills.
Your Attorney’s Ability to Negotiate a Settlement
To receive a fair settlement, you will need an experienced personal injury attorney who can negotiate with the insurance company and help you get the fair settlement you deserve.
Have you been injured in a car accident and have suffered a back injury? It is essential to consider all of the factors that may affect your back injury settlement amount before deciding if you will accept the insurance company’s initial offer.
With the help of an experienced personal injury attorney, you can get the money you need to pay for your medical expenses and other damages so you can focus on recovering from your injuries.
Recoverable Damages in Back Injury Cases
The average back or neck injury settlement amount depends on the severity of the claimant's injuries. More severe injuries will fetch higher settlements than less severe ones. Here are some damages that may be recoverable in a back injury claim:
The claimant's past and future medical bills related to the back injury may be recoverable, including both the cost of treatment already received and the cost of any future treatment that may be necessary.
It can include both wages that have already been lost and loss of future income. It will depend on whether or not the claimant is likely to return to work in the future, either with the same employer or at another workplace. If the claimant cannot work because of a back injury, they may be able to recover missed income.
Pain and Suffering
A back injury can cause severe pain and suffering for the injured person. This type of damage will make up a large portion of the total settlement amount in many personal injury cases.
The court may award punitive damages and compensatory damages in some personal injury cases. Punitive damages are designed to punish the defendant for careless or reckless behavior.
Proving Your Neck and Back Injury Damages
It is important to have as much evidence as possible to support your neck and back injury damages claim, including:
- Medical records and bills
- Witness statements
- Photos of the accident scene
You should also make sure that you keep copies of all correspondence with your insurance company and any legal documents you may receive from them or the courts. Most personal injury attorneys will help you gather this evidence and represent you in court if necessary.
We have a team of experienced lawyers at our law firm whose priority is getting our clients the compensation they deserve. If you or someone you know has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, please call us for a free consultation today.
Average Car Accident Settlement for Back and Neck Injury
No two injuries are the same, and therefore no two settlements will be the same either. However, according to studies conducted by the Insurance Research Council, the average settlement value for a back injury in a car crash can be high as:
- $17,500 for a herniated disc
- $15,000 for whiplash
- $21,700 for a fractured vertebrae
- $36,200 for paralysis
- $54,200 for quadriplegia
As you can see, the average back injury settlement amount in a car accident can be quite high. If the damage is severe enough, the settlement value may be more than $100,000.
You should also be aware that the average settlement amount is just that - an average. Some people will get more; some people will get less. The average car accident settlement will depend on many factors, including the severity of your injuries and how well you can document and prove them.
Insurance companies are in the business of making money, not paying out claims. They will often low-ball you hoping that you take their offer and go away. Remember that the amount you had in mind is likely to be significantly lower than the insurance company's estimate.
Some Notable Back Injury Settlement Amounts in Illinois
Although every settlement is unique, here are some notable back and neck injury settlements:
Cook County: $3.75 million
A woman was injured in a car accident and suffered severe back and neck injuries that left her permanently disabled. She secured a settlement of over $3.75 million to cover all of her past and future medical costs and her pain and suffering damages.
Lake County: $2.1 Million
The car accident victim suffered severe neck injuries that left her in chronic pain. She was able to secure a settlement of over $2.1 million. She did not lose work or wages, but she did miss out on certain household chores and recreational activities.
Madison County: $3.6 Million
A man was involved in a collision with a large truck that left him with severe spinal injuries. He was forced to undergo surgery and several months of physical therapy, all well documented. His personal injury attorneys successfully used this documentation to win a settlement of $3.6 million.
Lake County: $1.5 Million
A woman was injured in a car accident and suffered severe back and neck injuries. She underwent multiple surgeries and was left with permanent scarring. After a long legal battle, she won a settlement of over $1.5 million.
State of Illinois: $1.2 Million
A college student was involved in a car accident while on vacation and suffered severe back injuries that left her in a coma. Her family hired an attorney to help them fight for justice, and they were eventually able to win a settlement of $1.2 million from the other driver's insurance company.
Cook County: $1 Million
A newly married couple was traveling home from their honeymoon when they were involved in a car accident that left the husband with a severe neck fracture and other related injuries. He required multiple surgeries and months of rehabilitation before returning to work.
The other driver's insurance company was unwilling to pay what the couple felt they deserved, so they hired an attorney to help. After a lengthy court battle, the couple was awarded $1 million from the insurance company.
Many other necks and back injury settlements have been won in Illinois, and the average settlement amount for these types of injuries is likely to continue rising over time. It's important to remember that anyone can suffer from a debilitating back or neck injury - accidents aren't exclusive to cars; you could be seriously injured in a slip and fall accident, an assault, or even a sporting event.
If you have been injured and need compensation, speak to an attorney about your neck or back injury settlement options.
The Danger of Early Settlements in Back Injury Claims
When you are offered an early settlement in a neck or back injury claim, it is important to be aware of the dangers before accepting the offer.Some of the risks of settling early include:
- Not having enough time to document your injuries and recovery process can significantly reduce the settlement value
- Not being aware of all available damages, such as missed income or medical costs
- Making a premature settlement decision based on limited information about the long-term effects of your injuries
- Relying on an insurance company's promise to pay future medical expenses, which may not be honored
- Forgoing an experienced attorney's help in negotiating a higher back injury settlement amount
It is usually in your best interest to wait until you have fully recovered from your injuries before accepting settlement offers. A personal injury attorney will be able to help you understand the value of your claim and negotiate a higher settlement on your behalf. If you have been injured in an accident, contact an attorney today for a free consultation.
Back Injury Frequently Asked Questions
The frequency of back injuries due to car accidents are quite common, yet many people do not realize how extensive their injuries may be.
When it comes to back or spinal cord injuries, there are a few factors you will need to consider. Our personal injury lawyer has answered some of the most frequently asked questions below:
What Is My Average Back Injury Settlement?
It is important to remember that not all insurance companies are created equally, and some may be more likely to offer you a larger settlement than others.
Overall, understanding your average back injury settlement amount can be difficult if you are suffering from a neck or back injury resulting from a car accident. However, with the help of an experienced car accident attorney, you can get the compensation you deserve and move on from this traumatic experience.
How Long Does a Back Injury Take to Heal?
The healing process for a back injury can vary depending on the severity of the injury.
In some cases, a back injury may heal within a few weeks with rest and ice. However, a back injury can take months or even years to recover in other cases. If you are suffering from a back injury, it is essential to follow your doctor's orders and take the necessary time to heal properly.
How Do You Know If Your Back Injury Is Serious?
Several different signs and symptoms can indicate that your back injury is serious. Accidents, such as automobile accidents, slips, falls, and other incidents, might all have significant long-term consequences on your back. A back injury is considered to be serious when you have:
- Sustained a spinal cord injury
- Lost feeling in your legs or feet.
- Inability to control your bowel or bladder
- Paralysis in any part of your body.
If any of these symptoms sound familiar, it is important to seek medical attention immediately. A serious back injury can significantly impact your quality of life, so it is important to get the treatment that you need as soon as possible.
How Do I File a Back Injury Claim?
If you have been in an accident and have sustained a back injury, you may be wondering how to file a back injury claim. There are a few important steps that you can take to ensure that your claim is processed correctly:
- Get in touch with a lawyer as soon as possible after your accident. An experienced attorney can help you navigate the legal process and ensure that your claim is filed correctly.
- Gather all necessary documentation for your claim, including medical records, treatment notes, and other important documents related to your injury.
- File your claim as soon as possible. In many cases, you will need to file a claim within a certain period after your accident.
Can I Still Get Compensation for a Back Injury Even If I Have a Pre-Existing Back Condition?
Yes, you may still be able to get compensation for a back injury even if you have pre-existing injuries.
However, the amount of compensation you may receive will be reduced by the percentage of your pre-existing condition to your current injuries.
For example, if your doctor determines that your pre-existing condition contributed 30% to your current injuries, you would only be able to recover 70% of the compensation you would otherwise be entitled to receive.
Are Back Injuries Hard to Prove in a Lawsuit?
Yes, back injuries can be difficult to prove in a lawsuit. Back injury is often invisible to the naked eye and may not appear on diagnostic tests, such as X-rays or MRIs.
In addition, back pain can be challenging to quantify. As a result, it can be hard to prove that your back injury was caused by an accident rather than another incident or condition.
An experienced car accident attorney can help you gather the necessary evidence to prove your back injury and get the compensation you deserve.
How Do Injury Lawyers Calculate Settlement Values After a Car Accident?
Lawyers consider many different factors when calculating a car accident settlement value.
Some of the essential factors that lawyers consider include:
- The severity of your injuries
- The extent of your property damage
- The number of medical bills you have incurred
- The amount of missed income you have suffered
- The impact your injuries have had on your quality of life
- The amount of insurance coverage available to you
Contact our law office today to learn more about how injury lawyers calculate car or truck accident settlement values.
Speak to a Car Accident Attorney About Your Back Injury
Have you been in a car accident and sustained a back injury? If so, it is crucial to speak to a car accident attorney as soon as possible. A skilled lawyer can help you get the compensation to cover your medical bills, missed income, and other costs related to your injury.
At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC, we have years of experience helping clients get the compensation they deserve for their injuries. Our attorneys are dedicated to providing the highest level of customer service and will work tirelessly on your behalf.
Contact our law firm at (888) 424-5757 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation with a car accident attorney today. Our lawyers serve clients in Chicago, IL, and across the United States.