What is a Reasonable Settlement for a Child Injured in a Car Accident?
Every person can suffer severe consequences from a car accident. But when the accident involves a child, the physical and mental repercussions may be more severe.
Children are more fragile than adults–physically and mentally. They are at significant risk of injuries, psychological trauma, and mental distress in a car accident. A child victim may even suffer life-long complications from a car accident in severe cases.
Was your child injured in a car accident? Did the crash result from the negligence of another driver? If so, you can rightfully seek compensation for all the damages your family has suffered, including medical bills and emotional trauma.
Talk to one of our personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC to find out how you can recover damages for your car accident case. Call our child injury lawyers at (888) 424-5757 or fill out this online contact form for a free consultation today.
The Average Settlement for a Child in Car Accident in Illinois
There is no figure for the average settlement for a child in a car accident. The main reason for this is that no database tracks personal injury settlements in car accident cases.
Moreover, most car accidents are resolved through insurance settlements, and these values are confidential. Therefore, there is no way to determine the average settlement for a child in a car accident.
However, you can estimate your potential car accident settlement by adding up the value of your losses.
Factors That Can Affect the Value of Your Car Accident Settlement
There is no average settlement for a child in a car accident, but there are several factors that can significantly influence the value of your case. These include:
The Severity of Your Child’s Injuries
Physical injuries that require long-term medical care, therapy, and doctor’s visits will cost more than injuries that only need short-term care. Some injuries that could increase your settlement value include:
- Traumatic Brain Injuries: TBIs occur when the brain gets shifted in the skull following head trauma due to impact. TBIs can range from minor concussions to more severe conditions like brain hemorrhaging.
- Nerve Damage: A child can sustain nerve damage if the accident cuts, compresses, crushes, or stretches nerves. Nerve damage can result in various symptoms, including numbness, tingliness, pin-and-needles, and pain. Severe cases of nerve damage where the nerves are cut may be difficult or impossible to heal.
- Fractures: Broken bones tend to increase the value of a settlement since they are extremely painful (especially for a child) and can take a long time to heal.
- Spinal Cord Trauma: Injuries to the spinal cord can lead to temporary or permanent paralysis. The settlement value will depend on the severity, location, permanency of the paralysis, and the victim’s age.
The Length of Your Child’s Recovery Period
Generally, the settlement value of a car accident is more significant with longer recovery periods. For this reason, it’s crucial to keep track of how long it takes your child to fully heal from their injuries after the accident.
Your Child’s Mental Health
No matter how minor, a car crash can lead to mental health disorders. Your child may suffer anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and depression. Poor mental health can negatively affect your child’s grades, relationships with others, and mental and emotional development.
Your Child’s Quality of Life
Suffering trauma early in life can lead to lifelong physical and mental complications. If your child loses their ability to live a “normal life,” you can recover damages for this hardship.
For example, children injured in a car accident may not be able to recover from PTSD or participate in certain activities because of their injuries.
Your financial losses will also increase the value of your claim. These include medical expenses, lost wages, loss of future earning capacity, and property damage.
Your Part in the Accident
You might be held legally liable if you played a partial role in the accident. As a result, the court or insurance firm may reduce your settlement claim.
Filing a Car Accident Claim Involving a Child
Car accidents typically settle out of court. Whether you decide to settle with the insurance companies involved or take the case to court, having a passionate lawyer by your side is imperative to obtaining a fair settlement.
Negligent Parties in Car Accidents
There may be multiple parties involved in your child’s accident aside from yourself, including:
- The Other Driver: The other party may have been driving the vehicle negligently, putting you and your child at risk. Negligent driving could have looked like driving while intoxicated, driving distracted, driving while tired, driving aggressively, etc.
- The Driver’s Employer: If you collided with a commercial truck driver or a food delivery vehicle, you might be able to sue the driver’s employer. The employer may be held liable if they failed to check the driver’s record or encouraged the driver to speed up to meet a deadline.
- The Municipality: In some cases, the accident is not the fault of either vehicle driver. The municipality may be held liable if the accident resulted from their failure to ensure that the roads are safe. For example, you may get into a crash if the local government fails to address faulty traffic lights, road markings, merge lanes, etc.
Car Accident Damages
Filing a car accident claim against the liable party can contribute to your family’s financial recovery. Claimable car accident damages typically include:
- Medical Costs: You can recover compensation for your and your child’s medical costs, including physical therapy, ongoing psychological therapy, diagnostic doctor’s visits, surgery, mental anguish therapy, etc. For severe injuries that result in long-term complications, costs for medical treatment may also include therapy for future mental anguish and mobility aids.
- Lost Wages and Future Income Potential: You may miss work while helping your child recover (and heal from your injuries), resulting in lost wages, bonuses, and commissions. If you are left unable to work in the same capacity as before the accident, you may also sue for reduced earning potential.
- Pain and Suffering: A car accident claim also considers past and future pain and suffering, including physical pain, mental anguish, loss of quality of life, and loss of your child’s ability to interact normally with others.
- Disability: If your child becomes physically or mentally disabled after the accident, you might also be able to sue for the costs of your child living life with a disability. These may include rehabilitation therapy, mobility aids, in-home care, etc.
- Disfigurement: A child that has suffered injuries from a vehicle collision may be left disfigured or scarred. Scarring or disfigurement on a child, especially if it is on the face, can significantly increase your settlement value.
Determining damages in a car accident case can be difficult without the help of a lawyer. Contact Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC at (888) 424-5757 for a free consultation.
If you lost your child in the accident, you could file a wrongful death case against the negligent party. Recovering compensation may not be able to heal your pain, but it can help reduce the financial strain on your family.
You could seek the following damages:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Your child’s medical costs before passing
- The pain and suffering your child endured before passing
- Therapy costs
- Your family’s mental anguish
- Loss of companionship
The Role of Your Car Accident Lawyer
A strong claim depends on your ability to prove fault by the other party involved and the extent of your losses. A car accident attorney can help:
- Prove the economic and non-economic losses you have suffered
- Interview witnesses
- Manage the statute of limitations
- Collect supporting evidence
- File your claim or lawsuit
- Manage communications on your behalf
Having an experienced lawyer on your side can mean the difference between winning and losing your case. Contact (888) 424-5757 for a free legal consultation as soon as possible.
Your attorney will help you collect evidence for your claim. Some forms of evidence include:
- Medical records
- Photos and videos of the accident
- Accident reports
- Eyewitness accounts
- Expert testimony
- Cellphone records
Settling With the Insurance Company
Involved parties may decide to settle out of court. If you choose not to pursue a legal case against the negligent party, you may settle with their insurance company.
However, keep in mind that many insurance companies tend to offer lower settlements than what you may receive in court. Companies do this to protect their policyholders and bottom line. Furthermore, insurance adjusters are adept at finding any justifications to reduce settlement values.
Once you accept the offer, you can no longer sue the company for your child’s sustained injuries. With that in mind, it’s best to consult with a lawyer first before signing any document.
Get a free consultation and case review from Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC to see how you can maximize your claim.
Seek Justice for Your Child’s Injuries With an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer
Car accidents happen all too often. And despite multiple safety standards in place (seatbelts, car seats, booster seats), you may still get into a crash if another driver is not as careful as you.
Even minor injuries can affect children in such a significant way that they lose their quality of life for a certain period. But in severe accidents, children can lose way more than that.
Are you and your child the victims of someone else’s negligence on the road? For a free legal consultation, call our Chicago law firm at (888) 424-5757 or use the contact form.
There is no average settlement value for a child in a car accident. Still, a free case review from one of our attorneys can help you estimate the value of your economic and non-economic losses.
There is no obligation once you start a conversation with one of our lawyers. More than that, you don’t have to pay attorney’s fees unless we win the case.
- WebMD – Nerve Pain Resulting From a Car Accident
- NCBI – Mental Impact in Children Due to Road Crashes