After someone is injured in a car crash, one of the primary considerations when initiating a claim is what amount of damages that person may be entitled to receive. Determining the value of someone’s claim is more difficult than one may believe. There are a wide array of factors a person needs to contemplate when compiling their initial complaint that may impact the value of their suit. Once you have an estimate of the approximate value of the claim, you can have a better idea of what amount you can settle for versus whether you should litigate your claim.
Summing Up Your Monetary Losses
After making sure you file your claim within the time limit, monetary (“economic”) damages are the first type of damages that are contemplated in valuing a car accident claim. These losses are usually easily traced to concrete documentation, including medical bills, receipts, pay stubs from a person’s current employer, or other financial statements. Specifically, when estimating the amount of monetary damages you could receive, you want to be sure to add the following expenses:
- Any hospital or other medical treatment bills (including emergency room bills);
- Any amounts paid for prescription medication and medical devices you bought to treat your injury;
- Any amounts paid for medical-related transportation cost;
- Any lost earnings as a result of the injury;
- Any amounts paid to mental health specialists for treatment related to the injury;
- Any amounts paid to repair damage to your car; and
- Any other amounts paid directly as a result of your injury.
Determining Your Non-Monetary (Non-Economic) Damages
In addition to economic damages, people may also be entitled to non-economic damages, including damages for pain and suffering. These damages are typically calculated by applying a multiplier. The multiplier that is used for someone’s case depends on several factors including:
- The impact of your injury (any permanent or temporary disfigurement or disability);
- Your age;
- The severity of your injuries; and/or
- How your injury affects your everyday life and relationships.
Typically, the less severe your injuries and the less impact it had, the lower the multiplier is for determining your non-economic damages.
How Your Negligence Impacts Your Final Claim Amount
Florida follows a pure comparative negligence approach to calculating damages. This means you can recover damages even if you were more than 50% at fault for the accident. However, the amount you receive in damages is reduced by the percentage attributable to the claimant. For example, if you are found 60% at fault and your total damages would otherwise be $100,000, your damages would be reduced to $40,000.
Contract Us Today For Assistance
If you have been in a car accident with another person in West Palm Beach, you should hire experienced car accident attorneys to help evaluate your claim and determine the potential damages you may receive if the claim is successful. The skilled auto accident attorneys at Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith, PLLC can go through your bills and evaluate the impact that your injury has had on your life to figure out what amount you should settle for or whether you should litigate your claim. Contact us today for a free consultation.