If you’ve suffered a soft tissue injury in a Bowling Green car accident, maximizing your settlement is critical to your ability to heal. While the insurance company handling your soft tissue claim would like you to believe that it has little validity, this is far from the truth of the matter. Working closely with an experienced Bowling Green car accident attorney at Flora Templeton Stuart Accident Injury Lawyers is one of the most important steps you can take on the path forward toward obtaining a fair settlement.
What’s In This Guide:
- What Is Soft Tissue?
- Common Types of Soft Tissue Injuries
- Soft Tissue Injuries That Are Common to Car Accidents
- Important Factors That Commonly Affect Reasonable Car Accident Settlements for Soft Tissue Injuries
- Average Settlement for Soft Tissue Injury Car Accident Cases
- How Our Law Firm Works to Maximize Recovery in Soft Tissue Injury Cases
What Is Soft Tissue?
According to the Canadian Cancer Society, soft tissues surround, support, and connect organs and other tissues in the body. There are many different types of soft tissue in the body, including:
Muscles generate movement within the body. Our joints are central to controlled movement and range of motion, and they are surrounded by muscles that not only protect them but also work with them to allow fluid movement.
Ligaments are the heavy-duty connective bands of tissue that harness the bones of our joints together. Our ligaments cross over our joints, and in the process, they help to ward off damaging and/or excessive joint activity.
Tendons are similar to ligaments in that they are connective tissue that straps our muscles to our bones. Tendons play an integral role in muscle contraction and help to ensure flexibility.
Fascia is a covering that envelops both small and large muscle groups and bundles. Fascia is intended to glide smoothly over these muscle masses and to support their integrity of movement in the process.
Soft tissue injuries can be exceptionally painful and can seriously limit one’s range of motion.
Common Types of Soft Tissue Injuries
Soft tissue injuries refer to injuries to one’s muscles, ligaments, tendons, and/or fascia, and they are typically caused when the body is forced to move outside of its normal, healthy range of movement. Common causes include the impact of accidents, including car accidents. While soft tissue injuries come in a wide variety of forms, some of the most common include:
- Back strain
- Contusions (or bruising)
- Strains and sprains
Soft tissue injuries are often bedeviling because they can take their own sweet time to present with symptoms, and these symptoms often vary from person to person. In other words, soft tissue injuries can remain below the radar until they become both more painful and more difficult to treat effectively. Even relatively mild soft tissue injuries tend to require some form of rehabilitative treatment that can include a physician’s oversight with physical therapy and/or chiropractic care. For more serious injuries, a more intensive treatment approach involving specialists is likely necessary.
Soft Tissue Injuries That Are Common to Car Accidents
The impact of a car accident can lead to any number of serious injuries, including soft tissue injuries. One of the most common forms of soft tissue injury that is closely associated with car accidents is whiplash. Whiplash is a term that’s used to describe soft tissue injuries of the neck generally, and the whipping motion that is often generated when a car stops short in an accident – and that causes the neck to whip back and forth – is the reason behind the name. Whiplash is a painful injury that can have long-lasting health consequences, including chronic pain and seriously diminished range of motion. There are several other primary categories of soft tissue injuries that include contusions.
Soft Tissue Sprains
Soft tissue sprains refer to an overstretching of the ligaments in the injured area. For example, whiplash is generally a form of neck sprain or strain. When more serious, the affected ligament can tear. Some of the most common symptoms of soft tissue sprains include:
- Pain and/or bruising in the affected area
- Swelling and/or inflammation in the affected area
- Impaired flexibility in the affected area (and beyond)
Soft Tissue Strains
Soft tissue strains differ from sprains in that they are injuries to the tendons that harness muscles to bones. Soft tissue strains refer to strains in these connections, and when the injury is more serious, the muscle itself can tear. Symptoms of strains are similar to those of sprains, but muscle spasms can also be an issue. It’s important to note that ruling out broken bones by employing X-rays for both strains and sprains is a common element of the diagnostic process.
Important Factors That Commonly Affect Reasonable Car Accident Settlements for Soft Tissue Injuries
The dedicated, experienced, and caring car accident attorneys at Flora Templeton Stuart Accident Injury Lawyers will skillfully advocate for your legal rights and rightful compensation in pursuit of a fair settlement, and towards this end, several factors will play a key role.
No fault in this context refers to your own personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, which your car insurance provider is required to offer you. This coverage kicks in regardless of who is at fault, and it can augment any gaps in the at-fault driver’s coverage. The only way to avoid purchasing PIP coverage in Kentucky is to waive it in writing, but doing so is generally ill-advised. While the State of Kentucky is known as a choice no-fault state when it comes to your car insurance (PIP) if any of the following apply, you (or your survivors) can sue the at-fault motorist for just compensation:
- If your attendant medical costs reach or exceed $1,000
- If your injury is permanent and/or disfiguring
- If you break a bone
- If your injuries ultimately prove fatal
If you’ve suffered a soft tissue injury as a result of another driver’s negligence, you’re likely to experience considerable physical, financial, and emotional losses, which the law terms damages. The value of your claim is determined by the extent of your covered damages, which can be categorized in the following two ways:
- Economic Damages – Your economic damages are those that come with a price tag, such as your medical expenses, property damage to your vehicle, and lost earnings on the job.
- Non-economic Damages – Your non-economic damages are those that are more difficult to equate with a ready value but that are nevertheless very real and important to represent accurately. Common non-economic damages include your physical and emotional pain and suffering.
Your formidable car accident attorney will go to bat with the insurance company in its focused effort to negotiate a settlement that fairly addresses both your economic and non-economic damages in their entirety.
In highly specific situations in which the at-fault driver engaged in reckless, intentional, or otherwise egregious behavior, the court may award punitive damages that are not intended to compensate the victim but, instead, are intended to punish the at-fault driver’s negligence and to dissuade others from choosing a similar path.
Kentucky is one of the few states in the nation that employs pure comparative negligence for car accident claims. This means that, even if you share fault for the accident that causes you to be injured, you can seek compensation for the portion of your losses that the other driver is responsible for. In Kentucky, even if you shoulder more responsibility than the other driver, you are not barred from pursuing the percentage of your damages that the other driver is deemed to have caused.
If you are assigned 20 percent of the fault for the car accident that leaves you injured, for example, your settlement will be reduced by this 20 percent. Consider a more extreme example – if you are deemed to be 99 percent at fault for the accident that leaves you injured, you can go after the 1 percent that the other motorist bears responsibility for.
In such a situation, however, it’s important to note that the other driver is very likely to also pursue compensation for his or her own damages (typically by filing a claim with your insurance provider).
A common example of contributory negligence in which the injured party is found to bear partial responsibility is failure to wear a seatbelt (which can help minimize injuries). When accidents come down to one driver’s word against the other’s – such as when both drivers claim the other ran the red light, there is no one to bear witness, and the evidence is inconclusive – the involved insurance companies are likely to split the difference and assign 50/50 liability.
Average Settlement for Soft Tissue Injury Car Accident Cases
If you’ve suffered a soft tissue injury as a result of another driver’s negligence, you naturally want to know how much your claim is likely to settle for. After all, your physical and emotional recovery is very likely to hinge on your ability to obtain a fair settlement. The fact is, however, that – because your claim is unique to the situation and the unique circumstances involved – there’s no standard calculation process to ballpark your settlement amount. Your settlement should adequately reflect the damages you’ve suffered as a result of the other driver’s negligence, and with a dedicated car accident attorney in your corner, you make accomplishing this goal far more likely. Liability, medical treatment, and available insurance are the main factors in determining the value of a case and recovery.
How Our Law Firm Works to Maximize Recovery in Soft Tissue Injury Cases
If you’ve suffered a soft tissue injury as a result of another driver’s negligence, you face challenges ahead, but the accomplished Kentucky car accident lawyers at Flora Templeton Stuart Accident Injury Lawyers in Bowling Green are well-prepared and well-positioned to help. To learn more, please don’t wait to contact us today. Our firm provides personal representation from our top lawyers to get you to good doctors, investigate the accident with photos and witnesses, and negotiate a fair settlement or sue if needed.
We’re standing by to review your case at no charge to you, and we’re committed to helping you better understand the value of your claim and your best options moving forward. If you are injured and can’t travel to us, we will make every effort to come to you. If we can’t reach a settlement with the involved insurance company – or obtain a court award on your behalf – you won’t owe us anything, and as such, you assume none of the financial risks.
Contact Us Today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation with a Bowling Green Car Accident Lawyer
If you have suffered injuries in an accident, it’s in your best interest to contact an attorney as soon as you can. At Florida Templeton Stuart Accident Injury Lawyers, we are dedicated to helping victims like you recover as much compensation as possible. To schedule a free case evaluation, call our office today at (866) 988-1285 or contact us online. We travel to our injured clients and our services are free unless we win your case.