What Factors Help Determine a Car Accident Settlement?

February 27, 2023
Media Car Accident Lawyers at Eckell Sparks Fight Vigorously for Our Clients.

If you were involved in a serious car accident and have questions about a settlement, you should get legal advice. Personal injury settlements depend on multiple variables.


It is not enough to accuse the other party of careless driving. Evidence is critical to build a strong case that shows how and why an accident occurred. That is why it is so important to document the accident scene to the best of your ability.

Photos of property damage, dashboard camera footage, and witness accounts are invaluable when proving liability. Without evidence, the case becomes one party’s word against the other’s. A weak case means less incentive for the other party to propose a settlement.


Medical records detailing the nature and extent of your physical injuries are also valuable evidence. If you do not require immediate medical attention at the scene, be sure to see your health care provider as soon as possible after the accident.

Many severe injuries are not immediately apparent after trauma to the body. Symptoms of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), spinal injuries, or organ damage, for example, may come on later but are still quite serious and require prompt treatment.

Settlements are likely to be higher when someone is permanently disabled or has a chronic or severe condition that impacts their quality of life. Minor injuries tend to bring lower settlements because they require minimal care and a shorter recovery.

To document your condition accurately, save everything, from emergency room visit records to diagnostic tests, medications, and physical therapy scripts. Share them with your injury lawyer and keep copies for your own records.  

Without them, the other party has no reason to settle, or they may offer less than you deserve. They may question your injuries or claim your condition has nothing to do with the car accident at all.


Liability for an auto accident is the cornerstone of personal injury claims and settlements. Your lawyer must show that:

  • The other driver had a duty of care to operate their vehicle safely.
  • They breached that duty by driving in a careless or negligent manner.
  • That breach of duty directly caused the accident.
  • The accident led to your physical and/or emotional pain and suffering, and other losses.

Liability Insurance Coverage

Liability insurance coverage compensates individuals for accident damages. Pennsylvania requires driver to carry a minimum amount of liability coverage. That total breaks down into smaller amounts based on property damage, injuries, and/or fatalities that occur as a result of the accident.   

Injuries are compensable up to a certain amount, which may not cover a permanent or disabling condition. When an insurance settlement falls short, your lawyer may recommend pursuing a personal injury claim for additional compensation.

Medical Care Costs

Car accident settlements also cover expenses for medical care related to their crash injuries. Yet, insurance companies often try to downplay and undervalue these costs, offering less than you deserve. Your lawyer carefully reviews your medical records to ensure all costs are accounted for before you agree to a settlement.

Legal Representation

Many people involved in auto accidents are unaware they are entitled to more compensation for their claim. They may not think it is necessary to hire a lawyer to manage their case. That only benefits insurance companies that want to pay out as little as possible. Working with a lawyer not only ensure your interests are protected, but it sends a message to insurers and opposing counsel that you are willing to take your case to court if necessary.  

Media Car Accident Lawyers at Eckell Sparks Fight Vigorously for Our Clients

Our team of Media car accident lawyers at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. believes that every client deserves justice. Call us at 610-565-3701 or contact us online to schedule an initial consultation. Located in Media and West Chester, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Delaware County, Chester County, and Montgomery County.