If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of another party’s negligence, you are likely wondering what the average personal injury settlement amount is. Actual settlements vary considerably from case to case and depend on a number of factors.
Determining the Value of Your Damages
Under Ohio state law, personal injury cases can include those involving motor vehicle or motorcycle accidents, medical malpractice, workers’ compensation, construction accidents, wrongful death, and more. In each instance, a victim suffers an injury or illness as the direct result of another party’s negligence.
Determining the value of your damages depends on a number of factors but often involves quantifying the costs associated with a few key categories.
Identifying Damages You May Be Able to Claim
Claimable damages include the tangible costs of medical treatment and property repair and the less tangible emotional damages you are likely suffering. A personal injury lawyer can review the specific details of your case to quantify what you’re entitled to. These include the following:
- Medical bills and expenses: These include all costs associated with visits to doctors, hospitals, and specialists. Additionally, you may be able to seek compensation for all required medical tests, medications, and ongoing care services. Securing the help of a personal injury lawyer may be beneficial, as insurance companies will often resist paying a settlement until all prescribed medical treatments have been completed.
- Lost wages and earning capacity: Lost wages can include income lost as a direct result of an inability to return to your job at the same capacity as prior to the accident. This includes missed workdays, any reduction in earning capacity, and any career advancement opportunities that you are no longer eligible for. To quantify these losses, a personal injury lawyer will document missed days, missed career advancement opportunities, and more.
- Property damages: These damages can include any costs associated with repairing damaged property. For example, if your car is destroyed in a motor vehicle accident, property damages would cover the cost of replacing the vehicle and any personal belongings within the vehicle.
- Pain and suffering: These damages represent the court’s acknowledgement of the suffering that ongoing pain causes and ensures you are properly compensated for it.
- Emotional distress: This includes everything from depression to anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder; emotional distress damages compensate you for the turmoil you’re experiencing and cover the cost of treatment.
- Loss of enjoyment and consortium: If your injury prevents you from enjoying life or your relationships with your spouse or children, you may be entitled to compensation. These can be harder to prove, and a personal injury lawyer can be invaluable in placing a value on the compensation you deserve.
Costs associated with medical bills are relatively easy to tally and prove. Meanwhile, costs associated with emotional distress, ongoing pain and suffering, and loss of quality of life can be harder to prove. A personal injury lawyer will be able to identify the damages you’re owed, build a case for full and fair compensation, and litigate on your behalf if need be.
When to Secure Legal Counsel
The days and weeks following an accident or injury can feel like they speed by while you’re recovering. Knowing what to do and where to turn can be hard. Obviously, ensuring your physical health is attended to is your priority. Once you’ve received the required medical care, reaching out to a personal injury law firm may be your next best step.
While it is possible to file a personal injury claim without legal representation, it’s rarely advisable. Insurance companies have teams of legal experts who will do whatever it takes to convince you to settle for the least compensation as quickly as possible. Showing up to the negotiation table with legal counsel ensures you level the playing field.
Statute of Limitations
Keep in mind, Ohio sets a statutory deadline generally for filing a personal injury case in civil court. Ohio Revised Code Section 2305.10 allows two years from the date of the injury to file a lawsuit.
If that deadline passes before you take legal action, you could lose your opportunity to seek compensation. Our Ohio personal injury lawyer can ensure all paperwork is filed on time so this does not happen to you.
Call the Team at the Fitch Law Firm LLC Today for Help
Our Ohio personal injury lawyer understands the various tactics insurance companies use, knows how to work around them, and can build a strong case for compensation. In most cases, our attorney will attempt to settle the case outside of court but—if need be—is equipped to litigate your case in front of a judge and jury to ensure you’re fairly compensated for your suffering.
Call (614) 545-3930 to speak with a member of the Fitch Law Firm LLC team today for a free, no-obligation consultation. Learn your rights and get guidance on how to best proceed.