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What is the settlement process for car accidents?

No matter how well you know your automobile insurance policy, you are likely to have tons of questions if you have an accident in Mississippi. Perhaps the biggest ones are about the scope of the damage, repair costs and how much your insurance will cover. There are some limits imposed by state law that you need to know.

According to FindLaw, Mississippi mandates that you have liability insurance. The minimum coverage requirements are $25,000 in bodily injury for each person; $50,000 in total bodily injuries for each accident; and $25,000 in property damage for each accident. Drivers who fail to meet these insurance coverages may have their license suspended for as long as a year and/or receive a $1,000 fine.

The conventional at-fault system applies to drivers in the Magnolia State, which offers three options for insurance claims:

  • File with your insurance carrier
  • File with the other driver’s carrier
  • File a lawsuit

Most accident suits are settled through negotiation, and can include a variety of damages. Medical expenses, lost wages, pain, emotional distress and car repair or replacement are examples of common damages you may be able to recover.

The state allows you to recover damages even when you are the driver at fault through its use of the pure comparative negligence standard. This is how it works: If you are 90 percent responsible for the accident and the other driver is only 10 percent at fault, you can recover 10 percent of the total damage amount.

You are limited to three years from the date of the accident in which to bring suit for property damage, as well as personal injury. You cannot file a suit following that deadline.

This article on car accident settlements is for information purposes only. It should not be considered legal advice.

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