San Bernardino Injury Attorney
Grounds for Filing a Personal Injury Claim
Have you been injured in an accident? If so, then you are probably wondering whether or not you are able to file a personal injury claim. Personal injury claims are meant to recover compensation for bodily, property, and emotional damages suffered by an innocent party in an accident. For your claim to be successful, you will need to provide evidence of the three following factors.
Who was responsible for your accident? You will need to prove not only that you did not cause your accident, but that one or more specific parties did. You will have a hard time recovering fair compensation if you are responsible for your damages, even in part. The person or persons responsible for your accident – and therefore your damages – is the "liable party" and can be held responsible for covering your damages.
In order to file a claim for personal injury, you must of course be injured. Also, you must prove that your injuries are the direct result of the accident. This evidence can take the form of photos, witness statements, doctors' notes, and other such documentation.
Property Damages & Emotional Trauma
The accident in which you were involved may have also resulted in property damages or emotional damages. If you can prove that the damage to your property was caused by the accident, you could recover compensation from the liable party to pay for its repair or replacement. You can also require compensation for emotional damages if you have been traumatized by the accident. This usually requires an evaluation by a qualified physician or therapist.
How Much Is My Personal Injury Claim Worth?
When you have been injured because of someone else's negligence, you probably want to know how much compensation you would receive through a personal injury claim. The truth is that there are many factors that play into the value of a claim that calculating an exact value can be difficult. An experienced San Bernardino personal injury lawyer, however, will have handled cases similar to yours and will be able to provide you with an accurate estimate of the approximate value of your claim.
Factors that play into the value of a personal injury claim include:
- Medical bills
- Ongoing medical treatment
- Property repair / replacement
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma
- Loss of income
Special Damages vs General Damages
There are two different types of damages that are most commonly considered when determining the value of a personal injury claim. The insurance company will use the terms "special damages" and "general damages". In laymen's terms, special damages are hard costs that can be proven with a receipt or bill, such as medical bills, property repairs and replacement, and loss of income. General damages generally do not have a specific monetary value, but can be included in your claim. These damages are more commonly known as pain and suffering.
The value of your pain and suffering can be determined using one of two common methods: per diem or multiple.
The Per Diem Method
Using the per diem method, your personal injury lawyer will calculate all your hard costs and then consider all your pain and suffering symptoms to determine a daily value, or per diem, for your claim. If the injury you suffered as a result of an accident resulted in you missing work and generally affecting your life for 90 days, then the total amount of compensation is the per diem amount multiplied by 90 days. For example, if your personal injury attorney determines your per diem value is $120, then you can pursue compensation in the amount of $10,800 to cover the 90 days.
The Multiple Method
This method is more commonly used by personal injury lawyers. First, all hard costs are totaled up - medical bills, property damage repairs, lost income as a result of missing work, services you had to hire out for due to being incapacitated (hiring a gardener for 2 months, for example, while you heal from a broken leg), etc. The total of your hard costs are then multiplied by anywhere from two to five, depending on the severity of your pain and suffering. For example, if your total costs add up to $5,000 and you are additionally suffering from nightmares and PTSD, you might multiply that by three. This means you can pursue $15,000 in compensation.
Consult With A Personal Injury Lawyer Today
You cannot afford to wait when it comes to hiring a lawyer after an accident. Call Vetchtein Law today to get started on a claim. The firm has the determination and aggression to go up against the multi-million dollar companies and their aggressive insurance companies, as well, and will give its full energy to fighting your case.
With the representation of a personal injury lawyer from the team, you will receive exceptional communication and support from the moment your case begins until the best possible results have been obtained. Your attorney will negotiate on your terms alone and will not yield to the insurance companies.