How Much Is Your Injury Worth?
If you’ve suffered an injury at work, have been in a car accident, or are the victim of medical malpractice or any other wrongdoing, it’s crucial to reach out to a local personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Our goal at the Dixon Injury Firm is the help our clients get the most compensation possible as soon as possible. In doing so, you and your family will be able to handle medical and other expenses. Below, we will discuss what contributes to “the formula” that insurance adjusters use to determine how much that payout is.
Injury Claim Rewards
There are a lot of factors you need to consider in a personal injury case; courts will look to see what’s “fair,” insurers will push for the “cheapest,” and your personal injury attorney will fight for the practical maximum payout. Here are a few of the more common variables that affect injury claims:
- Lost Wages — You’re hurt and are unable to continue working. If you were the victim in a texting and driving accident, for example, and a surgery prevents you from working for 6 months, compensation may include every lost hour of those six months. If the plaintiff is disabled and is unable to work for the rest of his/her life, compensation could cover an entire lifetime’s worth of lost wages, or “future ability to earn.”
- Medical Expenses — Medical bills (ambulance fees, surgical, continuing care, medication, etc.) are a major part of compensation. Do you require therapy? Has the injury physically or mentally limited you for any amount of time, or forever? Medical expenses are sometimes handled by health insurers and are then paid back by any damages reward.
- Emotional Distress — Often difficult to put a finger on right away, emotional distress includes PTSD and other psychological complications down the road. Anxiety, fear, and sleep loss are common after traumatic events. Most states limit non-economic damages related to emotional distress.
- Pain and Suffering — Chronic pain? A difficult recovery after a surgery? Ongoing discomfort? Disfiguration? Pain and suffering is established by what you’ve experienced and will continue to experience. Damages paid by insurers (or defendants) will have to factor in ongoing pain and suffering. Usually, this involves any pain and suffering that will negatively impact or interfere with the rest of your life. (It may help to document this via a journal or photos to prove ongoing pain and suffering…which brings up another point: Document Everything if you want to win a personal injury claim.)
- Loss of Consortium/Companionship — Some states vary in this, but, simply put, loss of consortium is an action by a survivor (family member of the plaintiff/victim) for damages for loss of a relationship between said survivor and the victim. This may include physical relationships between spouses, etc.
- Wrongful Death — A victim’s family members are able to sue for wrongful death, though most suits come from spouses or parents (usually of children under 18, but each state/case is different when it comes to distant relatives).
- Punitive Damages — Some states don’t include punitive damages given the ones listed above. Punitive measures, such as punishing a defendant for wrongful or egregious behavior, aren’t meant to make the victim “whole.”
Need a Personal Injury Attorney?
To place a “value” on your injury or accident claim isn’t easy, though there are precedents and other standards courts and insurers use to cap reimbursement. You can contact the Dixon Injury Firm today for a free case review and consultation. Our firm would be glad to help you through the claims process and make sure you get the compensation you deserve.