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June 29, 2023

Personal Injury FAQs

Posted in Uncategorized

Personal Injury FAQs

Will my personal injury case settle or go to trial?

This is one of the most common questions that injured clients have. The majority of personal injury cases do settle. The victim’s attorney and the insurance will negotiate until they reach an amount both agree the victim should receive for their losses. Settlements are the preferred choice for both sides because not only do cases resolve more quickly than if they go to trial, but the litigation process can also be an expensive one.

There are, however, some cases where the parties cannot agree on a fair and just settlement and it is not in the client’s best interest to settle. In these situations, the victim’s lawyer files a personal injury lawsuit and a jury will decide if the victim is entitled to damages and how much they should receive.

The following questions are ones that a lawyer will consider when the insurance company submits an offer or counter-offer to the amount the victim is looking for.

How strong is the victim’s case?

Another factor that will be considered in any insurance company settlement offer is the strength of the victim’s case. There are some factors that can have an impact. For example, New Jersey’s personal injury law follows the “modified comparative fault” doctrine. This means that if a victim’s negligence is greater than the party they are suing – 50 percent greater – the victim may not recover. If there is any question that the jury could find the victim more than 50 percent at fault for the accident, it could be in the victim’s best interest to agree to a settlement.

How much is the insurance company offering in their settlement offer?

The purpose of every personal injury claim is to “make the victim whole,” meaning that the at-fault party must pay the victim an amount that will cover the losses the victim suffered due to their injuries. But that is not the insurance company’s goal. Its goal is to make money and any injury claims they have to pay out cut into those profits.

In the early stages of negotiation, the settlement offers submitted by the insurance company are typically lower than what the victim’s losses add up to. A lawyer will consider several factors to determine if the offer covers all of the expenses and losses the victim has had. This includes their medical bills and any lost wages they had. It also includes any future medical bills and income if the victim has been left with permanent disabilities. The lawyer will also determine if any non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, are covered.

What is the monetary value of pain and suffering in a personal injury case?

“Pain and suffering” is subjective damage, unlike medical bills or loss of income that have a tangible monetary value. There are several formulas a lawyer can use to determine that amount. Typically, these formulas include factors such as the amount of the victim’s economic losses and how many days/weeks/months their recovery took.

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