To calculate the value of a personal injury claim, a victim might have heard that three is the magic number. There is a myth that the best settlement for a personal injury claim is to multiply the victim’s medical expenses by three, and add lost income. Many victims of personal injury misunderstand the true value of their personal injury claim. Without the guidance from an Alabama personal injury attorney, the victim is in danger of settling for a fraction of the true value of their injury.
What are damages?
Legally, “damages” is defined as,
“Monetary compensation that is awarded by a court in a civil action to an individual who has been injured through the wrongful conduct of another party.”
After a person has been seriously injured, awarding of damages is an attempt to restore the victim to the position he or she was in before the injury. There are three types of damages.
These damages are an attempt to compensate the victim for the financial loss due to the injury. For example, lost income and medical expenses.
These damages are for victims who can prove that the other party is responsible for an injury. However, the injured party cannot prove the “offer proof of a loss that can be compensated.” For example, undocumented medical conditions, tests, or exams. Nominal damages can be complicated, and are best explained on a case-by-case basis by an Alabama personal injury attorney.
These are damages intended to punish the defendant for causing or allowing a circumstance to exist which lead to the victim’s injuries.
3 Factors that Can Increase Your Damages
Who is at fault?
Determining fault is essential in an Alabama personal injury claim. Alabama law does not permit a jury to award damages if the victim is even 1% responsible for their injury. However, an experienced Baldwin county attorney can review your case to prove two key elements of a claim. First, that the other party solely responsible. Second, that the fault is obvious. Establishing the other party’s obvious and total responsibility for your injury will have a substantial influence on the settlement amount.
How long will it take to recover?
Victims of a serious personal injury may require a prolonged recovery period after the accident. To be accurately compensated for the injury, the recovery period must be fully accounted for. Will it take more than six months to recuperate? Maybe, your health has stabilized, for the time being. Will your pain or discomfort relapse? An investigation by a Foley injury lawyer may find that the physician anticipates recurring health problems or future health problems associated with your injury.
Will there be a permanent consequence?
Permanent scarring and loss of mobility are two examples of permanent consequences that must must be accounted for in a personal injury claim. Will the victim experience permanent discomfort from the injury? Despite the medical community’s best efforts, some injuries cannot be successfully repaired. Permanent consequences can be quantified by a Baldwin county attorney who specializes in serious personal injury.
Two Types of Damages: Special and General
When calculating the value of a personal injury, the settlement should include both special damages and general damages. Medical expenses and lost income are considered special damages. Special damages can be documented. Future medical expenses, as well as future loss of income, are special damages that should be accounted for in a serious personal injury claim. General damages are those non-economic losses that can be challenging for a victim or inexperienced lawyer to determine. Pain and suffering is one example of general damages.
However, your case is unique. Non-economic losses can vary. As an advocate for victims of personal injury and an attorney who represents accident and injury victims every day, Noel B. Leonard, a Foley injury lawyer has experience calculating both the tangible and intangible losses incurred as a result of the another party’s negligence. Contact Noel today or Call 251-732-2701 to learn more about serious personal injury claims in Baldwin, Escambia, and Mobile Counties or to schedule a consultation.