31 May, 2024

What Is the Average Settlement for a Car Accident in Bloomington, Illinois?

Author Todd A. Strong
A man holds a large settlement check that he has won in a trial in civil court proceedings after the other party agreed to settle the case. average settlement for a car accident
A man holds a large settlement check that he has won in a trial in civil court proceedings after the other party agreed to settle the case. average settlement for a car accident

The average settlement for a car accident in Bloomington, IL, can range from thousands to millions of dollars, depending on the severity of the accident and the damages sustained, among other factors. All car accidents will involve varying elements that contribute to the total amount of compensation.

Knowing more about the nature of car accident cases and the factors involved can help you determine what kind of settlement you can recover for an accident.

In the event of an accident where another party is at fault, you may file a claim or a lawsuit against the liable party. The attorneys at Strong Law Offices in Bloomington, IL, can represent you during this process if you have a valid claim. Call our offices at 309-393-2928 to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys today.

The Average Settlement for a Car Accident in Bloomington

Car accidents occur every day across the country, including Illinois. According to the most recent crash data from the Illinois Department of Transportation, there were 298,347 motor vehicle accidents in Illinois in 2022. 20% of these accidents resulted in injuries, and 1,147 were fatal.

These accidents culminated in many damages that, in some cases, could cost millions of dollars. While minor accidents involving minor injuries and property damage could cost up to $10,000 in settlements, serious and fatal accidents can cost more. Generally, the more severe the accident and the subsequent damages, the more a case will be worth.

Ultimately, there isn't an average settlement for a car accident in Bloomington, but you can determine how much your case is worth with the help of an experienced car accident lawyer. The total cost will depend on the economic and non-economic damages involved, along with the degree of negligence and other contributing factors.

What Factors Can Impact the Average Car Accident Settlement?

There are several factors that will influence the outcome of a car accident case and the total settlement amount, including:

The Degree of Negligence

One of the main factors will involve the degree to which the liable party is at fault, as Illinois is a comparative negligence state. This model means the amount of compensation you recover in a car accident will depend on the percentage of negligence. The more the other party is at fault, the more compensation you're likely to recover.

The Availability of Evidence

The amount and quality of evidence available in your accident could also impact your ability to prove negligence and the damages you sustained.

Examples of evidence in car accident cases could include police reports, witness statements, recorded video footage or photos of the accident and the accident scene, medical records, and proof of lost income.

The necessity for good evidence in these cases makes it crucial to know how to document your car accident injuries and other damages following an accident. For instance, you could take photos of your injuries shortly after the accident if possible, seek treatment to begin gathering medical documentation, and maintain a pain journal detailing your experience with your injuries and treatments.

The Severity of Your Injuries

The types of injuries you sustain in an accident will help dictate how much compensation you're able to recover. The more serious your injuries, the more time it takes to recover, and the greater the chances of developing a temporary or permanent disability, which can translate into more compensation.

The Amount of Insurance Coverage

The insurance policy that the liable party carries will influence the amount of compensation you can recover. For example, you may recover more from negligent drivers with ample insurance coverage, including additional uninsured or underinsured motorist insurance policies.

To determine the total amount of compensation you're able to recover in a car accident case in Bloomington, consider working with an attorney. The right lawyer will know how Bloomington car accident settlements are calculated and work with you to identify all damages involved.

What Compensation Is Covered in a Car Accident Settlement?

There are four main types of damages that a car accident settlement could cover, depending on the factors discussed and other elements pertaining to your case.

These damages include:

Economic Damages

The primary type of compensation you recover in a car accident claim is economic. These damages apply to the total amount of financial losses endured because of a car accident.

The following are the types of economic damages involved in these types of cases:

  • Medical bills, including bills for ambulance rides, hospitalization, and urgent and ongoing treatment
  • Lost income and lost earning capacity
  • Property damage
  • Modifications made to a vehicle or home to accommodate people with disabilities
  • Physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • Home care services

Non-Economic Damages

Another type of damages you may recover in a car accident case is non-economic, which accounts for the personal losses experienced because of injuries and other damages.

For example, you might suffer serious injuries that lead to physical pain and suffering, along with disfigurement, psychological distress, and loss of consortium if a relationship suffers because of the injuries.

While non-economic damages are more challenging to prove and calculate in these cases, it is possible to do so with the help of a journal detailing your experience along with an attorney. An attorney can factor these damages into the total settlement amount using a designated calculation method.

Wrongful Death Damages

If a loved one dies in a car accident or as the result of one in the days, weeks, or months afterward, you may recover wrongful death damages. These damages can include the aforementioned economic and non-economic damages, including medical bills and pain and suffering the victim experienced before death, along with other damages pertaining to the victim's death, such as funeral and burial expenses.

Punitive Damages

If a court finds a defendant guilty of gross negligence or malicious intent that caused the accident, a judge or jury may award punitive damages. These damages are rare and only come into play in extreme cases, with the goal of punishing the defendant and deterring similar behavior in the future rather than compensating victims.

Regardless of the damages involved in your case, the right attorney can help you identify and quantify them. In doing so, he or she can gather evidence and determine the precise compensation you're eligible to recover.

How a Lawyer Can Help You After Your Car Accident

To succeed with your car accident case, it's best to consult with an attorney, especially if you sustain injuries and other damages and believe a liable party is responsible.

An attorney can help your case in several ways, such as:

Determining the Exact Amount Your Case Is Worth

One of the main ways a lawyer can assist you in a car accident case is by calculating the total amount of compensation you're able to seek. An attorney will obtain medical records, police reports, proof of lost income, and other evidence to help determine the case's true worth, ensuring you know what to negotiate for when you finally file your claim.

Negotiating With Insurers

Another benefit of working with a car accident attorney is the ability to effectively negotiate with insurance companies.

When filing a claim, insurance adjusters may seem like they're on your side and want to secure the right amount of compensation. However, adjusters are working for the insurance company, meaning they'll want to minimize the amount the company has to pay out.

As such, they may make an initial offer that's lower than what the case is actually worth. If you accept this offer, you may be unable to recover additional compensation at a later point as your case settles, and you sign a release of liability.

Conversely, a lawyer will know how much your case is worth and continue making counteroffers until you achieve a more favorable outcome.

Ensuring You File on Time

Like every other type of civil case, car accident claims and lawsuits in Illinois have a specific statute of limitations in place. This statute determines the time limit you have when filing a car accident claim or suit.

So, how long do you have to report a car accident in Bloomington? According to Illinois law, car accident victims have a total of two years to file from the date of the accident before they're unable to seek compensation.

When working with an attorney, he or she can work diligently to gather sufficient evidence, build a strong case, and file a claim or lawsuit before the statute of limitations passes. In turn, you can greatly increase your chances of getting the compensation you need.

Taking Your Case to Court if Needed

Although most car accident cases are settled during the car insurance claims process, some may not be if both sides can't come to an agreement regarding the settlement. In these instances, your attorney may decide to file a lawsuit in a trial setting if he or she believes you have a strong enough case against liable parties or their insurers.

Steps to Take to Maximize Your Car Accident Settlement in Bloomington

In addition to hiring an attorney, there are critical steps to take to help maximize your car accident settlement.

These steps can include the following:

Seek Medical Treatment Shortly After the Accident

One of the most important steps to take after an accident is to obtain professional medical care. Even if your injuries don't appear severe and may heal on their own, they could develop into more serious injuries later on.

Also, the longer you wait to seek treatment, the more difficult it will be to prove that the injuries resulted from the accident.

Generally, it's in your best interest to consult a doctor as soon as possible upon discovering any injuries or experiencing any symptoms.

Not only will taking this step put you on the road to recovery, but it will also supply you with medical documents that could serve as vital pieces of evidence in a car accident claim.

Never Settle for the First Offer from Insurers

Insurers often want to avoid making full payouts in insurance claims, leading them to make an initial offer that's potentially far lower than what you can actually seek.

If you're not sure how much your case is worth, it's best to speak with a lawyer for help calculating all damages involved. A lawyer could also negotiate with insurers on your behalf to get the full amount of recoverable compensation.

Stay Off of Social Media

Another crucial step to take is to avoid using social media channels while your case is pending. You may make a seemingly innocent post, but even a simple status update could indicate to insurers, attorneys, and investigators that your injuries aren't as serious as you claim.

Insurance investigators will likely look into your social media profiles to determine the validity of your claim, particularly if a high amount of compensation is at stake.

Record Your Experience

To help prove non-economic damages, record any pain and suffering, depression, anxiety, and other details around your injuries. This documentation could show insurers and courts that your injuries impacted your daily life and led to certain personal losses warranting compensation.

While the average settlement for a car accident in Bloomington isn't entirely clear, you could work with a lawyer to determine the exact amount your case is worth and pursue it via a claim or lawsuit against liable parties.

To increase your chances of filing a successful claim or suit, it's best to consult an experienced Bloomington car accident attorney to discuss a case. Contact us at Strong Law Offices today to schedule a consultation and determine what options are available to you.

About The Author

author-bio-image
Personal Injury Lawyer Todd A. Strong Illinois workers’ compensation and personal injury lawyer Todd A. Strong is the founder of Strong Law Offices in Peoria, Illinois. Todd brings considerable legal knowledge, experience, and skill to the table to ensure injured victims throughout the state are treated with respect, dignity, and fairness.
Years of Experience: More than 20 years
Illinois Registration Status: Active
Bar & Court Admissions: Illinois State, 1994
U.S. District Court, Central District of Illinois, 1994
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 2022
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Illinois, 2023
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About The Author

author-bio-image
Personal Injury Lawyer Todd A. Strong Illinois workers’ compensation and personal injury lawyer Todd A. Strong is the founder of Strong Law Offices in Peoria, Illinois. Todd brings considerable legal knowledge, experience, and skill to the table to ensure injured victims throughout the state are treated with respect, dignity, and fairness.
Years of Experience: More than 20 years
Illinois Registration Status: Active
Bar & Court Admissions: Illinois State, 1994
U.S. District Court, Central District of Illinois, 1994
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 2022
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Illinois, 2023