How much is a personal injury case really worth?
February 26, 2015 Posted By Vanguard Attorneys
To fully evaluate how much a personal injury case is worth, whether suffered through a car accident or some other injury, one must consider the significance of the damages due to the injury. These damages relate to the amount of money, whether monetarily, physically, or mentally, the victim loses or will lose because of the injury. In most injury cases, the victim, or plaintiff, receives compensation by those found legally responsible for the accident. Usually, a damage reward is agreed upon after negotiations between the insurance companies and attorneys, or is ordered by a judge after a court trial.
Because most personal injury lawsuits are classified as “compensatory”, which implies that the injured plaintiff will be compensated monetarily for the injury, most of the time is spent looking for a nominal amount to partially rectify the damage. Although some of the components are easily quantifiable, such as bills for property damage or medical treatment, others such as mental anguish or physical limitations are difficult to define in money.
There are different types of compensatory damages that are common in these cases. The first, medical treatment contains all the medical care costs associated with the injury, whether it is treatment you have already received or treatment you will receive. Another deals with the amount of income the victim will lose because of his or her inability to work due to the injury. Property lose also come into play during a personal injury case. Vehicles, clothing, or other items irreparably damaged during an accident will likely be compensated. Although there are a myriad of other potential damages, the last major factor deals with emotional suffering ranging from loss of enjoyment to emotion distress. The ability to calculate in dollars the fear, anxiety, and depression correlated with personal injuries can be understandably difficult. The degree of damage is taken into consideration, and luckily, the array of details is carefully factored into the equation when considering the extensive damage done to a victim’s life.
Lastly, there are extenuating circumstances such as punitive damage or the plaintiff’s actions that could further the case’s compensation. When the defendant’s conduct during the accident seems apparently egregious or offensive, the plaintiff may be awarded more money. This is done to act as a type of deterrent to the defendant, who should be punished so the same accident won’t happen again. The victim’s actions during the accident must also be taken into consideration. If instances such as comparative or contributory negligence have been awarded against the plaintiff, then the final compensation will undoubtedly reflect that award. Also, if the victim purposefully neglects any potential steps to mitigate the cost of damage then his final award will be reduced.