Is There a Minimum Personal Injury Settlement Amount?
There are no minimum or maximum limits on the damages that an injured party can collect in a California personal injury lawsuit regardless of whether that lawsuit is settled before trial or proceeds to a trial before a jury. Rather, the damages that an accident victim can recover will be based on the victim’s losses and injuries, with some possible reduction if the victim was partially responsible for the accident.
Southern California accident victims may improve their chances of recovering a larger personal injury settlement amount when they hire Los Angeles personal injury lawyers that have the knowledge and expertise to convince insurers and juries of the total extent of their losses and injuries. In our more than twenty-five years of representing injured parties, the accident and injury attorneys at Ellis Injury Law have recovered more than $350 million in settlements for their clients. We will use that experience and our extensive knowledge of California personal injury law to help you when you suffer injuries due to someone else’s negligence.
What issues affect a personal injury settlement amount?
Each personal injury case presents a unique set of issues and factors that will influence the settlement amount that a victim can recover. There are no definitive lists of issues, but in every case, a personal injury lawyer will use several factors to argue for the largest available damages, including:
- the accident victim’s medical bills for treatment of injuries caused by an accident, and any therapy required to help the victim recover from those injuries;
- the nature and extent of the victim’s injuries, and how those injuries affect the victim’s family relationships and his or her ability to continue a lifestyle;
- the value of property lost or damaged in an accident;
- the amount of pay that the accident victim could not earn if he or she is unable to work because of injuries;
- the injured party’s temporary or chronic pain and suffering;
- transportation and other incidental expenses incurred during the victim’s recuperation;
- costs of extra personal services required to help an injured party in handling routine matters that he or she can no longer manage due to injuries.
Personal injury attorneys will look at additional factors in the event that an accident results in a fatality, including funeral expenses and expenses and financial losses suffered by any survivors.
What issues might reduce a personal injury settlement amount
California applies a form of comparative negligence to accident and injury cases. If an accident victim was partially at fault for causing an accident, the personal injury settlement amount that he or she can recover will be reduced in proportion to his or her relative fault. Comparative negligence principles will not prevent a California accident victim from recovering any damages, and even if an injured party is 99% responsible for an accident, he or she can recover a settlement amount equal to 1% of the value of his or her losses and injuries.
Negotiations between the respective attorneys for an injured accident victim and a negligent party frequently involve disagreements over each party’s relative fault. If the attorneys are not able to reach an agreement on a personal injury settlement amount, the case will go to trial and a jury will determine what percentage of the injured party’s own negligence contributed to losses and injuries.
How do insurance policy liability limits affect personal injury settlements?
Insurers will not settle a personal injury case for an amount that exceeds the liability limits of the policy that covers the negligent party. If those limits are below the value of an accident victim’s injuries, his or her lawyer will determine if other insurance is available or if the negligent party has assets that will reimburse the excess amount of the accident victim’s losses.
Call Ellis Injury Law for highly-skilled legal representation in recovering large personal injury settlement amounts
If you have suffered serious injuries in a Southern California accident, make sure that the personal injury lawyer that you hire has the necessary skills and experience to negotiate for large settlement amounts, and to convince a jury that your conduct did not contribute to your injuries and that you deserve to recover the largest possible damages award.
The personal injury lawyers at Ellis Injury Law in Los Angeles have those skills and experience. Please see our website or call us directly for a complimentary consultation about your case and an assessment of the personal injury settlement amount that you might be entitled to recover.