What Is the Average Cost of a Car Accident?

Every year, more than 6 million car accidents take place throughout the country. They result in about 90 deaths every single day and injure roughly 3 million people overall.

These car accidents also end up costing a lot of money. In total, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that car accidents cost over $1 trillion per year.

Getting in a car accident can be a very scary experience for most people. And as we just alluded to, it can also be an expensive one in many cases.

So, what is the average cost of a car accident? It all depends on a variety of factors. You need to consider all these factors when you’re trying to calculate the cost of a car accident.

Continue reading to find out about some of the factors that can have an impact on car accident cost when you’re trying to figure it out.

Damage Done to a Vehicle During a Car Accident

In the immediate aftermath of a car accident, the first thing that most car owners will do is jump out of their vehicle to see how much damage has been done to it. They’re often worried about the price they’re going to have to pay to get their car fixed.

In some cases, they’ll see that their car accident damages aren’t too bad at all. Most minor fender-benders are only going to cost a few hundred dollars, if that, to repair things like cracked bumpers and other small imperfections.

But in other instances, a car accident can do thousands of dollars worth of damages to a vehicle. If, for example, there is damage done to the frame of a vehicle, it could cost a fortune and result in a car being considered “totaled.”

One of the reasons why it can be difficult to nail down the average cost of a car accident is because every accident results in a different amount of damage to a car. It all depends on things like how fast a car was going when it was involved in an accident and what angle a car was hit from during an accident.

Whatever the case, you could be looking at paying a small amount of money to make minor repairs to your car following an accident. Or you could be looking at getting a brand-new car as a result of an accident. You’ll have to get your car checked out to see where you stand.

Property Damage Done During a Car Accident

Oftentimes, car accidents involve one car running into another car and doing damage to it. This is what most people picture in their heads when they imagine a car accident taking place.

But it’s worth noting that damage is sometimes done to more than just cars during accidents. It’s not uncommon at all for people to accidentally drive their cars into trees, poles, walls, and even houses and other structures.

This can drive the cost of a car accident way up in many cases. While damage done to a tree isn’t going to cause the cost of an accident to spike, damage done to a pole, a wall, or a house could send the cost skyrocketing.

This is when figuring out the average cost of a car accident can be tricky. If someone drives into a house during an accident and causes a lot of damage to it in the process, the costs associated with that accident could prove to be astronomical.

Injuries Sustained During a Car Accident

As we touched on earlier, there are millions of people who are injured in car accidents every year. These people sustain a wide range of injuries, including:

  • Concussions
  • Whiplash
  • Broken ribs
  • Herniated discs
  • Broken arms and legs
  • Knee trauma
  • And more

And of course, all of these various types of injuries can affect the cost of a car accident in a big way. It all depends on how serious the injuries are and how long it takes people to recover from them.

In a best-case scenario, people will usually walk away from a car accident with some minor bumps and bruises. These kinds of injuries won’t cost much money and will be relatively easy to recover from.

But if someone suffers something like herniated discs in their back during a car accident, it could put them in a position where they’re not able to work anymore moving forward. That could impact the cost of a car accident and make it a whole lot more expensive than it would be otherwise.

It’s very important for anyone who is ever involved in a car accident to get checked out right away. It can help to stop what would be a minor injury from spiraling out of control and transforming into a debilitating injury over time.

Deaths Suffered During a Car Accident

Car accident-related deaths have actually gone down quite a bit in recent years. In 2019, about 17,000 people were killed in car crashes in the U.S., which was the lowest number since 2014.

But deaths still take place every single day as a direct result of car accidents. And when they do, they’re solely responsible for sending the average cost of a car accident way up.

Anytime a death occurs during a car accident, it costs almost $1.5 million on average. And that’s just for a single death. The cost will be much greater than that when there are multiple fatalities stemming from a car crash.

The good news is that it would appear as though the number of car accident-related deaths is trending in the right direction right now. The influx of safety features found in today’s cars has no doubt helped in this regard.

But there are always going to be at least some deaths that occur each year because of car accidents. And when they do, they’re going to increase the average cost of a car accident substantially.

Location of a Car Accident

Every state throughout the U.S. has its own liability laws on the books pertaining to car accidents. These liability laws can play a huge part in the total cost of a car accident.

How so? Well, in a place like Washington, D.C., there are pure contributory negligence laws that can make car accidents very expensive for people. If you’re found to be even partly responsible for a car crash in the nation’s capital, it’s going to affect your ability to file a car insurance claim following a crash.

This could potentially force you to pay an arm and a leg for damages done to your car, injuries sustained during an accident, and more. It makes the location of an accident very important.

Although it can be difficult sifting through all the information on liability laws that is out there, you should try to do it for your specific state. It’ll help shed some light on what a car accident might cost you if you’re ever involved in one.

You should also see what kinds of liability laws exist in another state if you’re ever in an accident there. It’ll ensure that you’re informed on what a car accident might cost you in that particular state.

Attorney Fees Racked Up as a Result of a Car Accident

If you’re ever in a car accident, you should make sure you take the right steps in the aftermath of it. You should have your car towed to an auto repair shop you trust, seek medical attention, and begin putting the pieces of your life back together.

You should also consider calling on a car accident lawyer for help. They’ll be able to help you figure out if you can create a case and take it to court to limit the cost of your car accident.

If a lawyer decides that you do, in fact, have a strong case, they’ll also help you fight your case from start to finish. They’ll collect evidence regarding your car accident and build a case on your behalf to give you the best chances of being successful in court.

This could prove to be a great move on your part. But it could also increase the cost of your car accident. So you should look around to find a car accident lawyer that’s going to provide you with a great rate so that you can go to court without breaking the bank.

So What Is the Average Cost of a Car Accident? These Factors Help Determine It

As you can see, it’s not exactly easy trying to come up with the average cost of a car accident. The car accident cost is going to depend on everything from the damage done to a car to the legal fees associated with the crash.

Consider all these different factors when you’re trying to figure out what the cost of a car accident is going to be for you. You’re going to find that the car accident cost will add up quickly based on each of the factors.

Read the other articles on our blog for more car accident content.