What is the Value of a Personal Injury Case and How Is It Calculated?
The cost of an injury can be financially and emotionally devastating. On top of physical pain you could face the possibility of long term disability. A severe injury could result in huge medical bills, lost wages, chronic pain, psychological trauma, bodily disfigurement and a lifetime of medical needs. Most people are not prepared for this.
If the injury was due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. The specific compensation amount depends on a variety of factors. Attorneys typically use a basic formula, built on the concept of damages, to estimate a fair amount in a personal injury lawsuit.
Types of Damages
Damages come in three varieties: punitive, economic and non-economic. Economic and non-economic damages are sought in the vast majority of personal injury cases. Punitive damages are usually reserved for cases involving gross negligence; where the at-fault party can be shown to have been aware of extreme risks to the safety of others, but proceeded with indifference anyways.
Economic damages can be easier to pursue if expense records are kept. These include medical costs for physical damage, lost wages due to missed work, lost long term earnings due to ongoing treatment or inability to return to work, property damage in the case of auto accidents, estimated future medical expenses and an estimate for physical pain and suffering.
Non-economic damages can be much more difficult to pursue. These involve emotional pain and suffering, and should compensate you for any emotional or psychological difficulties that have affected you. The basis of valuing pain and suffering will be made on the insurance company’s or defendants ability to pay, the amount that has been awarded in similar cases and a fair and honest evaluation of the severity of the injury.
Insurance companies will try to deny a claim initially. They will typically negotiate down using their own assessment or past experience to guide them. They will use a variety of methods to try to discredit a claim or specific aspects. But in the vast majority of cases, settlements are preferred to lengthy and costly court-based procedures.
Personal injury lawsuits can be complicated and riddled with details. To pursue the maximum compensation you are entitled to, consult with an experienced attorney. Peterson & Associates, P.C.™ will fight to get you the justice you deserve. Contact us today.