Calculating the Value of Your Personal Injury Case
To be able to effectively negotiate a fair personal injury settlement, you must have some idea of what your case is worth. Unfortunately, however, it can be difficult to make this determination because there is no set formula to follow. Not only that, but the value of your case can be affected by the laws in your jurisdiction.
The following is an overview of the factors that can come to bear, whether positively or negatively, on the amount in damages that you can recover in your personal injury case.
A good place to start is with the actual expenses related to your personal injury. These include medical bills and any other out-of-pocket costs that you incurred as a result of your injury. For example, if you were so hurt that you were not able to drive yourself to doctor’s appointments or physical therapy, you can claim the costs of hiring transportation as damages even though they are not medical expenses.
Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering is a name given to the negative effects of your accident that are difficult to quantify in economic terms. It includes emotional disorders such as anxiety and depression, as well as temporary or permanent physical pain. The effect of pain and suffering on your quality of life is real, even if not easily quantifiable. It may be calculated by using a multiplier.
A multiplier is a ranking of the seriousness of your pain and suffering from 1.5 to five, with five being the most serious. You then multiply your calculable expenses by the multiplier to determine what you deserve to receive for damages related to pain and suffering. Difficulties can arise when using a multiplier for purposes of calculation. The other side may challenge whether your level of pain and suffering is sufficient to justify a high multiplier.
It may be that your own actions or inactions contributed to your injury. It is necessary to determine the percentage of fault for the accident that each party bears. Based on the laws of your state, this could either prevent you from recovering damages altogether or else decrease the amount that you deserve to receive.
Calculating the value of your own case can be challenging at the very least. Contact a personal injury lawyer, like from The Law Firm of Frederick J. Brynn, for assistance. An attorney can use their skills and experience to inform and guide the calculation, negotiate a reasonable settlement on your behalf, or take the case to court if necessary.