How Much is Negligence Worth in a Personal Injury Case?
If you are injured because of someone else’s negligence or wrongful actions, the law says you have the right to be made ‘whole’ again and compensated for your losses. The purpose of personal injury damage awards is indemnification – which simply means being put back into the position you were in before you were harmed.
How much is negligence in a personal injury lawsuit worth? The answer depends on a number of variables, as the circumstances surrounding every accident are unique. Whether your injuries were caused by an inattentive driver, a negligent property owner, or a dangerous work environment, you deserve to recover fair reimbursement for your monetary, emotional, and physical hardships.
Determining the value of a personal injury case
Only an experienced Los Angeles personal injury lawyer can make an accurate valuation of your negligence claim. This is a labor-intensive process that involves investigations into the relevant facts in your case, liability, available insurance coverage, and of course, your injuries and damages.
Any law firm that states they can tell you what your claim is worth during a phone consultation is not worth your time. While there is a rudimentary settlement calculator used by insurance companies, these formulas only account for certain factors like medical bills, property damage, and other key economic losses. Whatever dollar amount generated by this calculator may serve as a baseline for settlement negotiations.
Every insurance company – before making a settlement offer — will consider the quality and trial experience of your legal representative. If your lawyer has a proven history of winning trials, then you have just leveraged serious bargaining power, and potentially increased the value of your claim. When the defendant knows your attorney is fully prepared to file a lawsuit and argue before a jury, they are motivated to settle fairly.
How personal injury compensation is calculated
California’s comparative negligence laws are lenient to injury victims who may have partially been responsible for the accident in question. This means you can still seek money in a negligence claim, even if you were deemed to be 10, 20, or even 90 percent at fault for the accident. The settlement or court award is reduced in relation to your percentage of liability.
The following are the major categories of compensatory damages that can be sought in a personal injury claim. Assigning a monetary value to medical treatment and lost wages is straightforward, but doing so for emotional suffering and loss of quality of life is much more demanding. Experts are often hired to provide testimony on the extent and severity of your suffering.
- Medical care – These damages include everything from ambulance transport to diagnostic tests, surgeries, and doctor’s fees. It should also cover the predicated cost of future medical treatment, rehabilitation expenses, and costs for prescription medications.
- Loss of income and wages – When injuries prevent you from working, you can seek to recover all lost wages and earnings during your recovery. This should also take into account your loss of earning capacity if your condition prevents you from working in the future.
- Property repairs — If your vehicle was badly damaged in a car accident, the cost of repairs will be reimbursed. If the vehicle was ‘totaled,’ you can pursue the fair market value for replacement.
- Pain and Suffering – This category of non-economic damages addresses the pain you incurred – and continue to suffer – from the accident.
- Emotional Distress – Emotional distress entails the psychological effects of the accident and can include depression, anxiety, fear, loss of sleep, PTSD, and other types of emotional anguish.
- Loss of Consortium – the loss of comfort, care, love, companionship, intimacy, and moral support that your registered domestic partner or spouse has suffered because of your wrongful injury.
- Loss of Enjoyment – When your injuries keep you from living a normal life — participating in your favorite hobbies, recreational activities, and parental duties, you can sue for loss of enjoyment of life.
Expert legal representation with no upfront fees
If you need help assessing a personal injury claim, reach out to Ellis Law for a free, no-obligation case review. One Call…Does it All®
Our firm leverages more than 25 years of winning complex personal injury lawsuits in California, and our trial and settlement results speak to our dedication, talent, and expertise.
There is no fee unless we win money in your case, and we have the resources to front all litigation costs.