wants to know is what is my personal injury case worth? what’s it worth? I mean how much money am I going to get um that depends – first of all, it depends on how much insurance coverage is available, because as a practical matter very often defendants either don’t have any and enough income or assets to make it worth going after them or for whatever reason those are protected.
So most personal injury attorneys are the first and most important question besides how the son of your injuries and who caused the accident, is how much insurance coverage is available. so they are going to want to get the defendant’s policy and find out how much coverage is available now. There also could be other policies in play including your own you might have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage. Sometimes people think that they don’t and they do. so always is a good idea to check which I do and then, you just review the facts to determine. what other types of insurance might be a place.
So, in general, you get the total amount and that is that’s going to be an effective cap on what damages are available, and then the next question is: who caused the accident and is that clear and if the other person caused the accident? and it’s clear then the next question is what are your injuries and what’s the extent of your injuries?
Now oftentimes insurance companies will say you know you’re not injured enough if this isn’t serious enough to involve an attorney that is just a lie, most of the time all the time you should never
ever not at least call a personal injury attorney. But I would prefer to find out you know if
they’re really giving you the real deal. I mean sometimes the case really doesn’t justify the work of an attorney but often your injuries might not be apparent at the beginning or you just don’t know the extent of them.
I’m going to give you one of a billion examples but let’s just say that you hurt your neck during the accident and you know you’re having pain in your neck, and you’re not really sure you go to the doctor. I mean everything else seems fine you go to the doctor right away which is what you should do and they take some scans and it’s you know maybe it’s clear that something happened, but the doctor wants to take the conservative approach which they should and they just sort of wait to see if your body will heal well your body might peel we hope that it heals but it might not heal and in that case you may need it ultimately need surgery you could need to a lesser extent injection. Sometimes people need injections for the rest of their life and in those cases they’re fine but they’re going to need injections for the rest of their
life, which means their neck was permanently injured and that’s a pretty significant a fairly high-value case.
There can be depending on if other issues are resolved like who’s at fault in the accident but you know so
your case value is going to be determined to a large extent on the extent of your injuries and that’s
combined with whether it’s clear who’s at fault so if it’s unclear in Florida the jury is allowed to sort of assigning a percentage of fault to different to the different parties.
I can say like you if you were the one injured the plaintiff contributed to your injuries because you didn’t wear a seat belt, okay well the jury can consider that and so they can say well we think the plaintiff you know suffered $100,000 in damages but we think they’re 20% responsible because they didn’t wear the
belt and so they’ll reduce the value of your plan by $20,000.
So not always toe it’s certainly not clear at the time of the accident usually because you’ve got to figure out what how your injuries are going to play out but then beyond that, you’ve got to figure out you know how the fault is weighed between the plane I kind of defendant and possibly other parties and that’s sort of it’s basically impossible for an attorney to predict unless that the injuries are catastrophic and they in those cases is a little easier to get to have some idea, and particularly if the insurance coverage is limited into a certain amount and it’s clear that the damages or the injuries exceed the amount of the insurance coverage even in those cases still imperative.
In my view that you get an attorney because insurance companies won’t deal with you fairly but it’s it
can be fairly clear the number of damages another thing is it there’s the general rule of thumb that attorneys have which could be useful possibly that someone who needs physical who needs pain pills and physical therapy they have a less valuable case than someone who needs let’s say injections who has a less valuable case than someone who needs surgery and you know of course we have multiple body parts involved then you also have a more or less valuable case but that’s kind of a general rule of thumb but you should never rely on general rules of thumb at all you should contact an attorney.