There are no specific formulas or methods to determine the exact amount of your personal injury claim. The basis for any claim will be the amount of medical bills your have incurred. Although there are other factors to consider, you must remember to be diligent in seeking medical help and to continue following your doctor’s order to maximize the amount of damages you can claim for your personal injury claim.
The Law Offices of Edward Misleh, APC is a Sacramento law firm, located in Sacramento, California that practices personal injury law. We represent clients in Sacramento, California and clients in Northern California with services they need and deserve when addressing injuries suffered from an auto accident or slip and fall due to another party’s negligence. Call now our Lawyer Hotline. We offer a free consultation and no upfront fees. We get paid only when we settle your case. Call now 916-443-1267 for your free consultation.
What is my Personal Injury Claim Value?
To determine your personal injury claim value, our office must first determine the type of damages you have suffered. Once liability is determined, you will be compensated for the following types of damages:
- Medical care and related expenses.
- Permanent physical disability or disfigurement.
- Loss of income as a result of your injury which includes the time you are not able to work and for the time you have spent to undergoing treatment for your injuries.
- Loss of family, social, and educational experiences, including missed school or training, vacation or recreation, or a special event.
- Emotional damages, such as stress, embarrassment, depression, or strains on family relationships.
- Any damages to property.
How do Insurance Companies Calculate my Personal Injury Claim Value?
Insurance companies determine your personal injury claim value by adding up the total medical expenses related to your injury. These expenses are referred to as “medical special damages” or simply “specials.” This is what is known as the base figure, a figure the insurance adjuster will then use to figure out how much to pay you for pain, suffering, and other nonmonetary losses, which are called “general” damages.
The insurance adjuster then multiplies the base figure by a factor which can range from 1 up to 10. When the injuries you suffer are relatively minor, the adjuster multiplies the base figure by a factor of 1.5 or 2. When the injuries are particularly painful, serious, or long-lasting, the adjuster multiplies the base figure by a factor from 2 to 5. This multiplier can be as great as 10 in cases where the injuries are severe or permanent.
The adjuster then adds on any income lost as a result of the injuries.
What is Percentage of Fault?
Your personal injury claim value is affected by any amount of fault that can be attributed to your actions. This is the most important factor affecting how much the insurance company is likely to pay. The damages formula will give you an approximate value or range of how much your injuries might be worth. However, you must then determine the percentage that each party is at fault for the injuries you sustain. These “percentages” are determined by assigning an approximate estimate of each party’s liability for the accident. If the other party is totally at fault, the adjuster will assign to that party 100% liability; if you are partially at fault, the adjuster will assign a percentage of fault to you.
What are the Amounts to Negotiate?
Once your damages have been calculated, you then multiply that figure by the percentage of liability assigned to the various parties. This will be the figure that both the adjuster and your attorney will try to eventually reach. Do not mistakenly believe that the large figure your attorney initially claims will be the amount you will receive. Likewise, you should not be overly concerned by the adjuster’s initial settlement which is often much lower than the figure they have in mind. Only after negotiations and or a trial will you have a better idea of what your claim will eventually yield.
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