Top 5 Factors That Impact the Value of Your Personal Injury Claim
If you've been involved in any type of accident where a negligent party is responsible for your injuries, their insurance company is liable for paying your medical expenses. In the State of Oklahoma, compensation can also be sought for pain and suffering and your physical injuries. Compensation for your injuries should be sought through the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer.
Pain and suffering is the term used to describe the physical pain you are experiencing from your injuries. Emotional distress and mental anguish are also considered when describing pain and suffering. In Oklahoma, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim is generally two years from the date of the injury. It's essential to file a claim within this timeframe, as failing to do so may result in your claim being barred. A personal injury lawyer understands how the effects of your injury will impact your lifestyle. These effects must be taken into account with the insurance company and courts if the claim goes to trial to determine the compensation you deserve. If you have suffered personal injuries in Tulsa, OK, you must consult with an injury lawyer in Tulsa to get justice and fair compensation.
These are five factors that will impact the value of your personal injury claim:
1. Economic and Non-Economic Factors That Impact the Value of Personal Injury ClaimEconomic damages are considered to be damages that impact your financial well-being, including:
- Medical costs
- Treatment for emergency care
- Wages lost due to injuries
- The capacity to earn your previous wages
- Rehabilitation and physical therapy expenses
There are also non-economic damages considered under the state laws that can also impact your well-being and lifestyle after an injury:
- Loss of education, training, advice, counsel, care, companionship, assistance, intimacy, and protection
- Mental anguish
- Emotional distress
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Other intangible losses
Maintaining the lifestyle you are accustomed to can be challenging if you suffer from any of these conditions. You deserve compensation from the negligent party that has caused these injuries. With the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer, you can receive the settlement you deserve.
2. The MultiplierMost of your settlement's value will come from determining your pain and suffering, loss of body functions, and emotional anguish. There is no straightforward method of calculating these non-economic damages. A multiplier is applied to calculate what you are entitled to for these conditions to reach an approximate value for your personal injury settlement.
Typically multipliers are about 15 but can range from 1, where there are mild injuries, to 5, where injuries are severe. There are different factors considered to determine if you will receive a lower or higher multiplier.
3. Higher MultipliersHigher multipliers are added if these conditions are present:
- Injuries to the hard tissues of your body rather than the soft tissues, such as muscles or broken bones
- TMI (traumatic brain injury)
- Spine and nerve damage
- Injuries to joints, especially if reconstruction or surgery is required
- Treatments from hospitals, specialists, or doctors versus treatments from assistants or chiropractors
- If a large number of follow-up appointments are required to treat the injury
- Permanent loss of use of any bodily function or parts
- Long-term recovery from injuries
- Permanent disfigurement or scarring
- Injuries that will impact daily life functions
- Injuries that will result in missing important activities or events
- Injuries that make you dependent on another's help
4. Lower MultipliersLower multipliers are added if these conditions are present:
- Injuries only to soft tissue
- Expenses primarily for medical diagnosis rather than treatment
- Treatment from assistant therapists or chiropractors
- No need for medication
- Only a brief time is needed to resume normal activities
- No loss of use of body functions or parts or permanent injuries impacting remaining life
- You are still able to care for yourself
- Only a few medical visits required
5. Other Considerations to Impact Value of Personal Injury ClaimThe above factors are not the only ones that will impact the value of your personal injury claim. The other party, along with you and your lawyer, will look at the weaknesses and strengths of your case. It will be determined if you have a chance for a higher multiplier or may end up with a lower one.
There are other considerations to impact the value of your personal injury claim that could be changed to impact the value more favorably:
- Your witness's credibility
- How your witnesses testify and what they disclose about the accident
- Lack of medical records to document your injuries
- Whether or not you share liability
- Whether or not there are pre-existing conditions
When you enter into a personal injury claim, you may end up receiving a fair value settlement. In other cases, less is received than expected. These are not predictable outcome claims, so it is important to maximize your chances of getting a fair settlement. A personal injury lawyer working with you is your best chance of a fair or better settlement.
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