If you’ve been in an accident and are looking to hire a personal injury lawyer in hopes of getting a settlement, you might wonder how much you’ll actually get. While there’s no definite number we can give you, know that there are a lot of factors that go into calculating personal injury sums. Just because someone got loads of money on a case similar to yours doesn’t mean you’ll end up getting the exact same amount.
According to Martindale-Nolo Research’s 2017 personal injury study, the average compensation of settlements and court awards in personal injury cases ranged from $3,000 to $75,000, with $52,900 being the average. Seven out of 10 readers they surveyed received a settlement award for their personal injury claims, which resulted in a 70% chance of a payout.
The majority of personal injury cases result in a settlement out of court, with only about 5% of them going to trial. The only way the case will go to court is if your personal injury attorney and the opposing party can’t agree on the amount for compensation. But the majority of cases are settled before having to go all the way to court. But just because this is the case doesn’t mean a settlement is a lot faster than going to trial.
You won’t settle out of court in a matter of weeks. It’s often a very long process and can take several months or even years. That’s because both parties must investigate the claims of the event that caused the personal injury, which is called “discovery.” Both parties usually hire an investigator to help calculate the amount owed in a personal injury case.
What Affects A Personal Injury Settlement?
When calculating a personal injury settlement, there are two major factors that come into play. The first one is how much the other party is willing to pay out, while the other is the extent of the injuries you have. If you don’t have very extensive injuries, don’t expect a million-dollar payout. But if the insurance the other party took out isn’t very extensive (especially if it’s a company and the injury happened at work), then you won’t get much money either.
But just because you’re not hurt physically, doesn’t mean you can’t claim psychological stresses caused by the accident or incident. You’ll have to prove that you’re suffering mentally because of the incident in order to make it a valid claim so that it can affect the settlement. It’s wise to remember that the settlement payout will depend on many factors.
Other Ways Personal Injury Settlements Are Calculated
Although there are two major factors that tend to determine personal injury settlements, there are other things that can determine how much you get. Loss of time at work is one of them. You’ll be able to ask for compensation for however many days you had to be out of work due to your injury or for days missed because of doctor appointments. While you may not be able to get all of your lost wages back, it can be a starting point for negotiations for your personal injury lawyer.
Medical bills are also factored into a settlement amount. You might be able to pay your medical bills after you receive the settlement money, or you’ll have to pay out of pocket and just get reimbursed once you receive the award. But keeping track of all your medical bills and expenses can be factored into your settlement for your personal injury case.
Getting in an accident can really put a damper on your life and your lifestyle, which means you’ll be able to claim pain and suffering in your case. This deals with anxiety, pain and other hardships endured because of the accident. Although it can be quite difficult to really calculate how much you should receive for every day that you’re suffering, it can be used to determine how much your settlement will be.
So, if your doctor says that it’ll take you about six months to recover from the accident, your personal injury lawyer can ask for monetary reimbursement each day that you’re recovering. So, if it’s $200 a day for those six months, merely count the days and then times it by the monetary value to request a certain amount for all of your pain and suffering. Although you might not get the money, you can definitely negotiate this amount the other party involved in the case.
You’ll also need to prove that you’re in pain or suffering, with things like photographs, videos or witness statements that can testify to your daily suffering. Doctors can also be used to testify to how much pain you have to help prove your case. This also goes to loss of enjoyment, which is usually very vague. However, it’s still something your personal lawyer can use to factor into your case so that you get a maximum settlement that you’re entitled to.
Loss of enjoyment can include many things, including things you enjoyed before the accident, but can no longer do, such as exercising, playing sports or being able to bond with your family. Although this type of claim is handled very differently in the various states, so you’ll need to speak to your personal injury lawyer regarding using “loss of enjoyment” as part of your case.
Personal injury settlements are hard to measure since each case is different and it’s important to know what factors go into calculating the awards. Make sure to speak with your personal injury lawyer if you have any questions regarding your case and potential settlement. Give One Law Group in Beverly Hills a call at (844) 626-1529.