Getting into a car accident is more than just a shocking and scary event — it is also expensive. Although the true cost will depend on the details of the accident, anyone involved in a car crash should take the following into consideration when trying to get an idea of the cost:
#1: Was anyone injured?
The United States Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration estimates that a car accident resulting in a serious injury results in approximately $655,000 in expenses. Examples of serious injuries for the purpose of this estimate included broken appendages, skull or abdominal injuries, burns or a lack of consciousness after the accident. The federal agency also estimates a minor injury will cost almost $200,000. Examples include a lump on the head and minor cuts.
These expenses could include the cost of emergency services like an ambulance, fire services and other emergency responders as well as emergent care at a local hospital. Additional costs could include follow-up appointments, medications, physical therapy and home modifications as necessary.
These injuries may lead to additional expenses if you cannot complete other tasks. Examples could include the sudden need to hire a cleaner because you cannot clean your home or additional help caring for children.
#2: Was the vehicle totaled?
First, figure out the value of the vehicle. Kelley Blue Book or similar websites can offer a good starting point. These types of platforms allow you to enter information about the specific make and model as well as condition of the vehicle to get an idea of its value. If the cost of repair is more than the estimated value, it is likely totaled.
Even if the vehicle is not totaled in the accident, the damage may still result in the need for expensive repair work.
#3: Will the accident impact your ability to work?
In addition to the injuries discussed in point number one, your ability to work may also be impacted by the lack of a car if the vehicle was totaled or otherwise needs repair work. You may also find it difficult to work due to the need to call insurance companies and gather information about the accident properly document what happened.
Upon review, you may realize these costs become expensive quickly.
Why would you want to properly document the crash and have an idea of the cost? In addition to budgeting to cover the expenses, you may want to have an idea of the cost to hold a responsible party liable. If the accident is the result of another driver’s negligent or reckless behavior, you may be able to hold the driver responsible for these expenses through a personal injury lawsuit.