Settlements are common in civil lawsuits, so common that most cases end in a settlement rather than a jury verdict. Neck injuries sometimes lead to large settlements since the neck is a very sensitive area of the body, but settlements can be predictable.
Determining the average settlement for neck injuries is more complex than it sounds. Neck injuries vary from minor yet painful injuries to debilitating. As such, settlements vary as well. To help you understand how your potential settlement might turn out, consider the extent of your damages and any circumstances that might make your claims stronger or weaker. You also need evidence. The more evidence you have to support your neck injury claims, the more leverage you have when negotiating a settlement.
Our Chicago personal injury attorneys can set up a free case assessment to begin your claims if you call the Rhatigan Law Offices at (312) 578-8502.
Neck Injuries and Average Settlements in Chicago
Many people, both plaintiffs and defendants, would rather work out a private settlement than take a case to court. While you certainly have a right to have your day in court and a jury decide your case, a settlement may get what you need without going through a trial. Neck injuries can be severe, painful, and expensive. While settlements for neck injuries may vary, they can be high in cases where injuries are severe.
There are so many variables in neck injury cases that calculating a single average settlement amount is unrealistic. People whose neck injuries are minor – like minor whiplash injuries after car accidents – will probably get lesser settlements than those whose neck injuries are long-lasting or even disabling.
To understand what kind of settlement you might get, you and your attorney should review the details of your accident, the extent of your injuries, and how likely you are to win if you take your claims to a court of law.
Determining How Much Your Neck Injury Settlement Might be Worth in Chicago
You can better understand the potential settlement in your neck injury case by examining your damages and weighing them against aggravating and mitigating factors surrounding your case. The more damages involved in your case, the higher your settlement should be. The presence of aggravating factors that make your injuries or the overall situation more painful for you might also drive up a settlement. Mitigating factors might have the opposite effect and give defendants an excuse to pay a smaller settlement.
Damages may be divided into several broad categories: economic, non-economic, and punitive. Economic losses are injuries that cost money. For example, hospital bills and medical treatment tend to make up a large portion of economic damages in neck injury cases. If your injury is severe and you need medical care for the foreseeable or indefinite future, these damages may be very high.
Non-economic damages are based on your emotional or psychological pain and suffering. First, the accident itself might have been very traumatic. For example, you might have injured your neck in a bad car wreck. People who survive such accidents are usually very distressed or traumatized.
Second, the pain from your neck injury might significantly affect your emotional and mental health. Chronic pain is no joke. Chronic neck pain might emotionally wear you down over time. These experiences deserve fair compensation.
Punitive damages are rare, but if they are available, they may significantly drive up the value of a settlement. Punitive damages are awarded to punish defendants for their shocking or outrageous conduct. These damages are only available when defendants cause injuries through fraud or willful and wanton conduct, and the bar is set high. Even so, the possibility of punitive damage might be enough to persuade the defendant to pay a larger settlement.
Numerous factors and circumstances, in addition to damages and evidence, influence the outcome of settlement negotiations. Aggravating circumstances, or things that make your situation more painful or difficult, may give you greater leverage in negotiations.
For example, suppose you were an athlete on the verge of going pro before your neck injury. Not only must you endure medical treatment and serious pain, but your career might be permanently sidelined. Such a loss is difficult to put a price on, but it can be used to argue for a higher settlement.
The defendant’s behavior may also be an aggravating factor. Even if the defendant’s actions do not meet the criteria for punitive damages, it might make them much less sympathetic to a jury. As such, the defendant might be willing to pay a bigger settlement because they know their conduct during the accident will work against them in court.
Certain factors or details about your neck injury case might work against you and reduce your potential settlement. For example, if the defendant has evidence that you are partially to blame for the accident, your damages might be reduced. Even if your contribution to the accident is small, it might be enough for the defendant to argue for a lower settlement.
Our Joliet, IL personal injury lawyers will also consider the defendant’s evidence. They might have evidence and witnesses that directly contradict your own. While this does not necessarily cancel out your evidence, it might make it harder for you to secure a favorable jury verdict. As such, negotiating a better settlement might also be harder.
What Evidence Do I Need to Negotiate a Good Settlement for a Neck Injury in Chicago?
A settlement for a neck injury may be directly proportional to the plaintiff’s evidence or lack thereof. The more evidence you have supporting your claims, the more likely you can convince the defendant to agree to a higher settlement. If you have trouble finding evidence, you might have a harder time getting a good settlement.
A big part of the negotiation process is your odds of success in the courtroom. Defendants often would rather avoid a humiliating and expensive loss in court, and they might agree to a generous settlement deal to do so. If your odds of success are lower because evidence is scant, they might be more willing to take their chances in court.
Call Our Chicago Personal Injury Attorneys About Your Neck Injury Claims
Our Illinois personal injury lawyers can arrange a free case evaluation to start your case if you call the Rhatigan Law Offices at (312) 578-8502.
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