How are damages calculated in a Hollis personal injury case?
Table of Contents
Some damage calculations are relatively straightforward, such as evaluating how much property damage you suffered, how much you’ve spent on medical care and doctor bills, and how much time you missed from work after the accident or for doctors’ appointments. Calculating the cost of future medical care or lost income is a little less straightforward but can usually be done with a fair degree of certainty. For instance, after your doctor has declared that you are medically stationary or reached a level of maximum medical improvement, we should have a good idea about what kind of future medical care you may need related to the injury. Also, we’ll know whether you can return to your old job or if your injuries prevent you from working at the same income level due to partial or complete disability.
When figuring “noneconomic” damages like pain and suffering, insurance companies typically assign a “multiplier” value to the medical expenses that have been incurred and are likely to be incurred in the future. This multiplier value, usually somewhere between 1.5 and 5, is multiplied by those medical damages to arrive at a figure the insurance company may feel is a reasonable amount for pain and suffering. Factors which influence how high or low the multiplier will be set at include: the severity of the injury; how long it may take to heal; what part of the body is affected; whether the injury will require multiple surgeries and/or a long, difficult period of rehabilitation; scarring, disfigurement or permanent disability; and how quality of life and daily living are affected by the injury.
Other factors, such as the amount of insurance coverage and the conduct of the parties, can impact the calculation of damages as well. For instance, when settling a case, the insurance company may consider the availability of witnesses should the case go to trial, and how likeable, sympathetic and articulate are the plaintiff and defendant. Also, the comparative fault of both parties may play a large factor in calculating a settlement amount. If the plaintiff is thought to bear some responsibility for the accident, this lowers the value of the case proportionately. Finally, if the defendant’s conduct was especially reckless, wanton or malicious, punitive damages may be appropriate to punish the defendant and deter others from similar conduct. The size of a punitive damage award depends on how bad the conduct was and how large an award needs to be to serve as an adequate punishment given the particular defendant’s financial means.
What if I can’t afford an attorney for my Hollis personal injury claim?
At Cohen & Jaffe, we believe every accident victim deserves top-quality representation, regardless of their ability to pay. You’ve been hurt by a negligent party through no fault of your own, so it wouldn’t be fair if a lawyer’s high prices kept you from getting the compensation you need to deal with your injuries. We don’t charge a large “retainer” fee up-front to secure our services. Instead, we take all Hollis personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. A contingency fee means that we don’t charge any money up front to take your case, and we only collect a fee if we recover compensation on your behalf. If we don’t recover, you don’t pay. Also, our Hollis injury law firm advances all the costs necessary to pursue your claim, so it never costs you a dime out of pocket to pursue justice in your case. Finally, in a contingency fee, the lawyer’s fee is based on the size of the settlement, so you can be assured your lawyer will work hard to achieve as large an award as possible.
Local Attorneys Serving the Hollis Community and You
If you’ve suffered a personal injury accident in Hollis, you don’t have to travel far to get high-quality representation. In fact, you don’t have to travel at all because we’ll come to you. Our Queens and Long Island legal practice is proud to serve the people of Hollis, and we’ll provide you with personal service and attention to make sure your needs are met as we pursue a claim for you. Call 866-878-6774 to schedule a free consultation today. There’s no fee unless and until we recover for you.