What Damages Am I Entitled To In A Personal Injury Lawsuit?
What are damages in an accident lawsuit?
Damages is a legal term that refers to the money an injured person could receive as a result of their personal injury lawsuit. When you’re given a settlement or awarded money from a court during a personal injury lawsuit, that money is known as ‘damages’. Damages are a vital part of recovery for many people since they allow you to regain your financial stability after an accident and focus on your physical healing and recovery instead of worrying about how you’re going to pay bills.
What makes a settlement or damages fair?
Essentially, damages in a personal injury lawsuit are focused on returning you to the financial state that you would have been in if the accident never happened. Contrary to the way that they’re often portrayed in the media, these aren’t just a scam or scheme form a dishonest person – they’re a very real necessity for someone trying to get back on their feet after an accident.
What damages should my settlement include?
A personal injury lawsuit should include compensation for everything that impacts your finances that is related directly to your accident. This can include a wide range of things including future costs that aren’t even commonly thought of by the average person. Some things that will need to be factored into your settlement include:
• Medical bills
• Future estimated medical bills
• Potential impact to your ability to earn money
• Impact on things like retirement funds or health insurance
• Lost wages
• Future estimated lost wages
• Medication costs
• Expenses for medical supplies
One of the most important things that someone injured in an accident can do is to remember that just paying for a few medical costs isn’t enough to make a settlement worth taking. Instead, you need your attorney to review your case and ensure you get what you’re really owed.
How does my attorney really know what I’m owed?
Your attorney works with financial experts and medical professionals who review your case and make a determination of just what the real costs of your injuries are. They factor each of the points above and create a picture of what you are really owed. Then, they work to make sure that you get that sum.
The insurance company told me I don’t deserve compensation. I have no options, do I?
Insurance companies don’t stay in business by paying out huge sums of money all the time. It’s common for them to tell the injured that they aren’t entitled to compensation in the hopes that it will end your attempts to get compensation. But if your injuries were the result of someone else’s actions – or if you have a PIP policy – you could very well be owed compensation for your injuries.
I’m being offered a settlement that seems pretty good. Shouldn’t I take it?
It’s easy to feel like a settlement offer is your best bet, especially if the insurance company has fought with you about giving you anything for some time. But those settlement offers are usually ploys designed to convince you to accept an amount that’s much less than you deserve. Instead, you need to let your attorney review the offer and make sure it’s fair. If it isn’t, they can negotiate to help you get something closer to what you’re owed. Accepting a settlement offer blindly could leave you still struggling to make the recovery you need.
Why is a lawyer so important?
A personal injury lawyer not only fights to make sure you get what you’re owed and that you don’t get bullied by the insurance company. They also take the burden of the legal process off your shoulders so you can focus on what is most important – healing physically and emotionally after the accident. They’re your greatest friend and your most fierce advocate during the recovery process.