Clients often rely on insurance companies to tell them what their case is worth, but the insurance company does not always have the best perspective. The insurance company may not have taken the time to truly understand the extent of your injuries. The true value of a case is in the details, you cannot come up with a settlement estimate without first factoring in all of the facts from the accident and the events following.
Personal injury cases, also referred to as tort cases, can be filed over a number of different harrowing situations. While these cases can range from minor accidents to catastrophic injuries, any time a person must deal with the complicated legal process while also trying to recover from an injury, life gets stressful.
The basics of a personal injury case involve a situation in which the injured person files a civil complaint against the person(s) responsible for the injury. Unlike criminal cases, in which a complaint is submitted by the government, injury cases are filed by the person who was injured. While we hear a lot about “settlements” injury cases are a court-based process, the total time and effort to resolve or settle a case varies.
Personal injury claim values depend entirely on the nature of the individual case. The real monetary value of any case generally depends on the following:
- Medical expenses
- Lost work expenses
- Unique case circumstances
- The defendant’s individual assets or insurance assets
- Physical/emotional pain and suffering
- Concrete financial loss
These factors fluctuate based on each individual situation, so it’s almost impossible to estimate the value of a case without a consultation with a qualified injury attorney. Many personal injury cases operate within a time constraint known as a statute of limitations, so it’s imperative that these filings take place as soon as possible after the incident.
The compensation from a personal injury claim also depends on the ability to prove that each of these costs have been, or will be, incurred by the injured person. Those who have been involved in an incident in which they were injured by another person should document everything - including medical bills, copies of old pay stubs to verify previous income, concrete financial loss, and more.
There’s no one simple mathematical formula for estimating the end value of a personal injury settlement. It would be foolish to calculate the compensation by simply factoring lost wages and medical bills (sometimes called “specials”)- many times, additional compensation can and should be awarded to the injured person as a result of physical and emotional suffering, which is often difficult to quantify.
The reason behind the complexity is that personal injury claims are not simple enough to be boiled down to a formula or calculation. Every person is unique. You cannot gauge someone’s losses due to injury with a simple number that can be multiplied or divided. For example, a pianist with a broken wrist will likely be entitled to more in monetary damages than a legal secretary. While the secretary may be able to continue to work with a wrist injury, that same injury could end a pianist’s career permanently.
Personal injury cases can be life-changing and emotionally taxing, so make sure that if you’re searching for legal representation for your personal injury case, you choose an attorney who has the experience necessary to get you full amount of compensation you deserve.