How does an attorney determine what a case is worth? There are many factors that come into play when it comes to evaluating the value of a personal injury claim in California and elsewhere throughout the nation.
An attorney will look at how much your injuries have cost you and could potentially cost you for the rest of your life. This means looking at financial costs, physical costs and toll that the injuries have taken on your body, and your emotional state of mind, as well.
Damages are considered as “compensation,” as they are meant to make up for what the injured person lost as a result of the accident. It can be difficult to come to an understanding of what the injury has actually cost you, in terms of pain and suffering. It is easier to determine the cost of medical treatment or replacement of a damaged motor vehicle, for example.
Factors that an attorney will take into account when building your case include:
- The cost of medical treatment, present day and into the future
- The loss of income due to treating the injury
- The loss of property such as a car, clothes, or other items damaged in the accident
- Emotional upset or distress caused by serious accidents
- Pain and suffering caused as a result of the accident
- Loss of enjoyment means putting a figure on the loss of your ability to enjoy life like you used to, including loss of ability for hobbies, exercises, or other types of activities.
- Loss of consortium determines damages surrounding the injured person’s relationship with his or her spouse, and how it has been impacted as a result of the accident. Sometimes, the spouse and the children are considered separately, with damages awarded directly to the family member who has been impacted rather than to the injured innocent victim
When the Person Who Caused the Accident or Injury Was Extremely Careless or Negligent
If an individual who was extremely negligent injured you, you could potentially be awarded a “punitive” damage award. Punitive damages do not have anything to do with the other type of damage awards, which are compensatory, to make up for various types of losses.
Punitive are intended to punish and they also serve as somewhat of a deterrent to the defendant and to others who may consider acting in a reckless manner. They are literally meant to “cost” the defendant money for the negligence.
Other Factors That Affect Value of a Case
If there is comparative negligence, meaning that you in some way were partially at fault, the damage award will reflect the percentage of fault.
Questions About the How Lawyers Arrive at the Value of an Injury?
If you or someone you know has suffered harm due to a reckless or negligent act on the part of another, you may have a legal basis to seek compensation for medical costs and other damages. We can answer your questions and help you understand your rights. We offer free consultations and will answer your questions. We work on a contingency fee basis, so that you pay nothing until we win an award for you. To contact us, please send an email or call 800-228-0507.