People who have been in a car accident typically focus on the damage to their vehicle. They ignore other types of damage that could be hurting them financially. When contacting their insurance company, getting money to replace the damaged car is often the only type of cash award discussed.
Only speaking about the car’s value leaves those in car accidents worse off. Seeking only the value of the damaged car means that car accident claimants are cutting themselves off from three other types of cash awards. This is cash that would help make the claimant whole. Always speak with an attorney after a car crash to make sure you are getting all the money owed by your insurance company. Don’t limit yourself to just the cost of car repairs.
A Vehicle’s Value
Getting fair value for a car damaged in a car accident is important. The California Department of Insurance states that most insurers will pay the lesser amount necessary to repair the vehicle or the actual cash value (ACV) of the car if it is considered totaled. ACV is the market rate for a similar car that has not been in an accident.
While getting a fair payment for the damage to your car is important, there are three other areas of cash awards that should also be negotiated with your car insurer.
While not every car accident includes physical injury, you should be asking your insurance company about medical expenses. Medical expenses include expenses for current medical treatment, anticipated medical expenses, and even the cost of medical devices. Be sure to document each type of medical expense as you pay it.
Mental, Emotional, and Physical Distress
Recovering from injuries can be expensive. Some of that recovery may include dealing with physical pain, disability, disfigurement, mental trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder, and a loss of dignity. People often do not want to discuss these issues as they may seem embarrassing. However, this is money owed by your insurer. This type of award is to help mitigate the distress you are facing. Do not be afraid to ask for the help that you are owed.
Loss of Earnings
The final type of cash award covers loss of earnings. Such losses include the amount of money you could have earned from the time of the injury to the final settlement. Injured claimants may also be owed loss of earnings where an accident affects your ability to earn.
Getting the Most
An experienced car accident attorney can help you determine what types of cash awards should be paid in the case of your accident. Reach out to us if you have questions about the different cash awards owed in your car accident.