Accidents are indeed stressful and agonizing, and huge medical bills can add to your distress. That's why buying a comprehensive insurance plan and setting realistic expectations are important. Since accidents do not come announced, knowing how much you would get from car accident injury settlements in Alberta is wise.
So here is a comprehensive guide on calculating your accident injury settlements, along with a list of losses that are covered under it.
Since the settlement you will receive largely depends on your insurance provider, make sure you only opt for reputed insurers like Surex.
How Are Accident Injury Settlements Determined In Alberta
Unlike other countries and states, Alberta does not have a preset chart or formula to determine insurance settlements. This might seem like a disadvantage at first when you are unable to calculate your exact compensation in case of an accident. However, this approach actually proves to be more efficient.
In Alberta, the judiciary has a personalized approach to claim settlements. They believe that each accident affects the victims differently, and there cannot be one way to compensate them all equally.
The law here takes into account the severity of your injury, how long it will last, and how much you will lose in terms of your employee wage.
For example, a person who will be bed-ridden for six months will receive higher compensation than someone who broke his ankle. Similarly, let's assume that the person who broke his ankle was a famous footballer. In that case, he will receive higher coverage to make up for the considerable loss of income.
The insurance laws in Alberta also take into account the effect that the accident had on your mental health and your PTSD. The higher the losses you suffer, the more compensation you will receive.
When Is The Best Time To Raise a Claim
Depending on the accident's severity, you can be burdened with substantial financial losses, and it's only wise to try to get out of it as soon as possible. Thus, you should file a claim as soon as you can. Alberta also has a maximum claim window of 2 years. This means if you do not raise a claim within two years of the accident, you will no longer be eligible for coverage.
What Losses Will Be Covered Under The Compensation
An accident brings along quite a few financial losses such as car damage, personal injury, loss of income, etc. Here is a list of everything that is usually covered under accident injury settlement.
Starting from first-aid to all the other medical treatments undertaken to treat your injury, the insurance company will pay the medical bills. If you were not at fault, it's the at-fault driver who will compensate you through his liability insurance. You can also demand compensation for after-recovery care. However, if it was a single-car crash, your medical payment coverage will take care of it.
Loss of Wage
When you are injured in an accident, it can also lead to permanent or temporary employment loss. Under the personal injury protection coverage, you do not just get your medical bills paid but also get compensation for lost wages. In some cases, if the accident was fatal and you did not make it, this policy will also cover your funeral charges.
Pain & Suffering
Alberta's insurance laws take all the pain and suffering brought by an accident (even those that are not economic in nature) into account when calculating your compensation.
The remuneration for pain & suffering in accidents leading to soft-tissue injury is capped at $5296. This limit, however, does not apply to severe injuries like fractures and dislocations. There is no individual upper limit for each of these categories of injury. However, the total reimbursement for pain & suffering for every kind of accident is fixed at $370,000. This coverage does not include compensation for property damage and medical bills.
These are the following things that come under the category of pain & suffering:
- Cognitive effect
- Limited socialization
- Weakness & exhaustion
- Inability to do daily chores
- Reduced sexual capabilities
- Inability to enjoy hobbies or other sources of entertainment.
How To Determine The Right Compensation For Your Accident
Determining the right compensation for the losses can be a little tricky. So here are a few things you can do to calculate what exactly you should be paid for your injury.
Make An Estimate & Approach Your Insurer
Established insurance providers like Surex always try to help out their customers in every possible way. In this case, you need to make a total of all your medical bills, expected loss of wage, post-recovery medical bills, and the estimated amount for pain & suffering.
After that, approach your insurance provider and ask them for an estimate. These settlements are done through negotiations. So if the two parties are on similar lines, you can negotiate a deal with them.
Find a Good Lawyer
A good lawyer can do wonders for your claim settlement amount. Sometimes, it's difficult for common people to understand if their insurer is underpaying them. But lawyers can see straight through it and will help you get the highest coverage possible. Sure, they charge extra. But they can help you gain 10x their fees from your insurer.
Use An Online Claim Calculator
Although this isn't a highly recommended method, you can still take the help of online claim calculators to get an estimate of your compensation. Many insurance companies have their own extension of claim calculators. You can also use multiple online calculators and settle for the average of those estimated reimbursements. However, the final decision depends on your insurer.
Accidents are incredibly distressing, and not getting the rightful compensation for your losses would only add to it. Your insurance company will help you out here, and you can definitely negotiate the claim settlement amount. But negotiating will fetch no results unless you know what to expect. Hence you do your homework beforehand and for the worst-case scenario, get yourself a good lawyer to get the reimbursement you genuinely deserve.
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