Rear end collisions are the most common of all automobile accidents according to the National Safety Council, and the average settlement for a rear end injury from a car accident can vary significantly based on the extent of the injuries. These types of accidents are commonly called whiplash accidents because unsuspecting car passengers frequently experience neck and back injuries as a result of the sudden traumatic force though other injuries can be incurred.
Realizing Injuries Post Crash
Victims of rear end collisions may not realize until post crash that they have been injured or the extent of injuries incurred. Symptoms of injury include the onset of pain in the neck and lower back, ringing in the ears, headaches, and shoulder area soft tissue pain and bruising caused by the seatbelt suddenly tightening as the passenger is propelled forward. In one case a woman with a foot on the brake at the time of impact broke her ankle bones.
Injuries can occur in low impact collisions as well as high speed ones. Whiplash typically causes pain for up to 3 months, but whiplash and other injuries can lead to lifelong chronic pain. It is difficult to get full and fair compensation for lifetime chronic pain and these types of claims are normally tried in front of a jury.
Though no firm figures are available, studies have indicated the average rear end accident settlement for a low impact car accident is approximately $10,000 to $15,000.
Never Settle Too Early
There are two types of damages: compensatory and punitive. Compensatory damages are intended to make you whole again. They include medical expenses, lost income, temporary car replacement during repairs, diminished value of your auto, and pain and suffering. You can also pursue punitive damages if the other driver was clearly driving recklessly, or there were auto defects that should have been corrected by the manufacturer contributing to the accident. The punitive awards are larger awards and can exceed $1 million, but they account for less than 5% of all auto accident settlements.
Getting Legal Help
It is important to consult an attorney with experience in personal injury law when involved in any rear end collision and not agree to an early settlement with an insurance company. The majority of rear end auto collision claims are settled out of court but require skilled legal negotiation.