Calculating Compensation in a Personal Injury Lawsuit
Filing a personal injury claim involves requesting monetary compensation for injuries and losses that you sustained. When you pursue a personal injury claim, it can be challenging to determine the appropriate amount of damages to collect. Since every injury and situation is different, there is no preset amount to request. Here’s how to calculate a fair estimate for your injury case.
Bills Are Used To Calculate Special Damages
Many injuries result in a financial loss for you. When you file a claim, you can determine the dollar amount of the loss from bills or invoices that you’ve received. These special damages include the following:
- medical devices
- lost wages, both past and future
- Physical therapy
- Items damaged during the injury.
- Personal assistance needed during your injuries, such as gardeners or childcare providers.
These expenses create the financial foundation of your claim, so be sure you include the total value of all of your bills, even if your personal health plan paid a portion. Review your statements and make sure that you have everything from each doctor. You don’t want to skip an itemized treatment bill because it is on a separate invoice.
General Damages Require Some Interpretation
You can request additional damages in addition to the financial loss of an injury. Each case is different, and you may feel differently than someone else in a similar situation. This type of loss is often referred to as “pain and suffering.” It includes many things that you can’t necessarily see or attribute to a specific dollar amount. Some examples of this are:
- anxiety and depression
- chronic physical pain
- the emotional stress of experience the accident
For most mild to moderate suffering, personal injury lawyers calculate one to two times the amount of special damages when requesting these additional general damages. However, if you have significant injuries, you might ask for a calculation based on two to five times the special damage total due. Examples of these situations are severe trauma such as a plane crash, permanent disabilities such as paralysis or amputation, or you suffer from debilitating mental anguish. In these cases, it’s best to work with an attorney to calculate an appropriate request.
When you are hurt and file a personal injury claim, there are many different pieces of information used to calculate an appropriate amount of compensation. If you believe you may have a cause for a personal injury lawsuit, set up a consultation with a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.