One question that every accident victim asks is “How much is my car accident claim worth?” A correct assessment can make the difference between proceeding with a lawsuit or simply filing a claim against your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance.
There are several factors that need to be examined when valuing your case, but it ultimately comes down to determining how your lifestyle, physical health, and finances have all been affected by the accident.
Reaching a Full Recovery
You are entitled to reach the maximum level of recovery possible for your circumstances. This means that whatever medical procedures and treatments are necessary for your recovery should be paid for by either your insurance claim or through a personal injury lawsuit.
You will also need to seek compensation for your future medical bills so that you do not end up paying for them out of pocket later. This may include any of the following that apply to your accident and injuries:
- Trip to the emergency room
- Diagnostic services
- Ongoing medical care
- Rehabilitation and physical therapy
- Medical equipment
- And more
Lost Income Due to a Florida Car Crash
If you have been severely injured, odds are that you are going to miss work while you recover. You should be compensated for these lost wages as well as any wages you are likely to lose in the future due to the wreck.
We can help you calculate your lost wages. Simply bring in your pay stubs and W-2 from prior to your accident. If you have been working part-time, bring your most recent pay stubs so that we can calculate the difference in your earnings.
For example, if you were earning $3,000 per month and now earn just $1,000, you should receive $2,000 for every month since the accident and every month going forward until you are able to return to work in your previous capacity.
If you have not been able to work at all, your lost income would be equivalent to your annual earnings multiplied by how many years you have left until retirement age. Of course, the likelihood of raises and cost-of-living adjustments will also need to be factored in.
Financial Compensation for Household Expenses
You can also include household expenses that have resulted from your injuries. For example, your injuries may have forced you to require some of the following:
- Retrofitting your home to accommodate your injuries
- Hiring caregivers to assist you
- Moving into a handicap-friendly home or installing wheelchair ramps
Noneconomic Damages from a Car Wreck
Your claim will also need to cover any noneconomic damages you have experienced. This will include your pain and suffering, damage done to your marriage and other personal relationships, lost sexual function, and a decreased overall quality of life.
To receive compensation, you need to prove that someone else was negligent and therefore responsible for your accident and injuries. The at-fault party needs to be at least 51 percent at fault in order for you to receive compensation.
You will want to have as little negligence as possible assigned to you since this percentage will reduce your financial award. For example, if you were found to be 20 percent negligent and received a $20,000 settlement, you would then only receive $16,000.
Work with a Florida Auto Wreck Attorney
Proving negligence and valuing a claim requires both time and experience to do correctly, making it best to work with a skilled attorney who has experience with all aspects of car accident law.