How Much Is Your Personal Injury Case Worth?
What’s Your Personal Injury Case Worth?
If you find yourself injured because of someone else’s negligence, you might be considering your options. Hiring a personal injury lawyer may indeed be the right choice for your situation, but undoubtedly, you’re looking for answers about what your case could be worth. The answer? It’s complicated.
Compensatory damages – the most common type – are an attempt to make up for the pain and suffering a plaintiff experienced. Attorneys must try to put a dollar figure on the cost of that pain and suffering, which can be difficult. In some cases, compensatory damages can be straightforward; if a pedestrian is hit by a car and breaks his leg, the attorney might seek payment for the victim’s medical bills. Other times, however, determining compensatory damages isn’t as clear. The same victim with the broken leg might have been a competitive cyclist who can no longer compete, let alone cycle, due to his injury. Figuring out a monetary value for this loss of enjoyment is anything but simple.
Types of compensatory damages include: medical treatment, loss of current and future income, property loss, pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment, and loss of consortium.
Punitive damages are less common that compensatory damages. They occur when a defendant has acted outrageously careless. Punitive damages serve as a deterrent for both the defendant and the community at large. It sends a message, loud and clear, warning people not to act so careless with the lives of others. These damages can sometimes reach millions of dollars, but most states have set a cap on these rewards in personal injury cases.
Your Actions Can Affect Your Settlement
Your action – or lack thereof – can be a huge factor in determining the worth of your case. If you’re even partially to blame for the accident, the damages awarded will likely reflect it. Some states even follow the idea of “contributory negligence,” wherein the plaintiff is not eligible for damages if they were partially to blame. Also, failing to mitigate damages can trip up plaintiffs seeking damages– did you faile to get medical treatment after the accident, which in turn made your injuries worse?
There’s no easy answer to this tricky, complex question. Thankfully, a good attorney can help you arrive at a number you feel fairly compensates you for your losses.
Virginia Personal Injury Lawyers
Virginia personal injury attorney Richard Serpe represents victims and their families who have suffered serious injury due to someone else’s negligence. We offer a no fee promise which means you don’t owe us any legal fees unless we settle or win your case. If you’ve been injured due to someone else’s negligence, contact us to discuss your rights.
*All cases are different and the results of one case cannot be used as an indication of what our firm may obtain for a similar case.