It's hard to ignore those loud-mouth lawyers who yell and scream about getting you the millions you deserve for your personal injury claim.
While you may deserve millions for your claim, those cases are few and far between. While millions of dollars sounds great, would you be willing to live without a limb? The grass isn't always greener on the other side.
These commercials do spark a certain curiosity though, and people tend to wonder exactly how much their claim could be worth. The figure people have in their minds tends to be different from what a lawyer may think and certainly less than what an insurance company would be pleased to pay.
There are a lot of variables that come into play when calculating a personal injury settlement. You have to consider lost wages, medical expenses, your personal pain and suffering, but a number of other things come into play such as past settlements and jury tendencies that may affect your payment.
Calculating your expenses from medical bills is one of the more straight-forward parts of determining how much you may be owed by a negligent party. When looking at the bills, you use the total bill - not how much you have to pay with your insurance.
This gets a little tricky when you have to determine what future medical bills you may have due to your injury. You'll also have to consider your out-of-pocket expenses such as medications, medical equipment and any other fees associated with your claim.
Property damage is generally subjective to each case. An injury on the job tends to not carry property damage as part of a settlement, whereas a vehicular accident would. If the negligence of others causes destruction of your property, you deserve to be compensated.
In our neck of the woods, there has been a surprising number of vehicles colliding into buildings and businesses. In a situation like that, the business would have a property claim against the driver of the vehicle.
Lost income relies on two sources: wages and compensation. Calculating lost wages is pretty simple; take your daily rate and multiply it over the number of days of work you will miss. Lost compensation refers to any vacation days, bonuses and other sources of income from your employer that are supplemental to your wage. Like medical bills, these figures must be accounted for missed work and future missed work.
Pain and Suffering
The law also allows for compensation for a victim's pain and suffering associated with the negligent act. Solidifying a figure on this category is subject to a person's seriousness of injury and subsequent lifestyle afterward. This refers to physical and emotional distress. If your injury causes a bout of depression following the injury, you could be owed additional funds for continued suffering.
A bruise won't get any compensation in courts, but there is a shortlist of injuries that typically are argued in court. Some of the injuries courts will hear include,
- Broken Bones
- Limitation of a bodily function,
- Permanent limitation of use of a body member or organ.
- Permanent loss of use of organ function or part of body.
- Loss of limbs.
- Loss of fetus due to injuries.
There are other factors that may influence the outcome of your case or settlement. If you go to trial for your claim, jury temperament could affect the outcome of your case and the dollar amount you will be rewarded. Also, prior cases that are similar to your claim will influence the amount of your claim reward. Depending on your jurisdiction, there may be laws in place that will cap punitive damages in your state. In New York, there is no punitive damage cap.
Most minor claims can be negotiated by the victim themselves, but for larger claims, including the ones listed above under Pain and Suffering, an attorney's advice should be sought on what the correct legal recourse should be.
At EA Lawyers, your personal injury representation is free unless we collect a claim for you. To discuss your options regarding your personal injury claim, contact EA Lawyers at (716) 652-0828.