As a personal injury lawyer in Cleveland, one of the questions I am often asked is “how much is my personal injury claim worth?” The answer to this question depends on a number of factors.
The biggest thing that an insurance company or a jury evaluates in determining claim value and damages is the amount of medical bills that you have as a result of the accident. Compensation for your medical bills often makes up the largest component of any amount that an insurance company or a jury would compensate you for. Therefore, somebody with $100,000 in medical bills will receive a bigger award from an insurance company or jury than somebody who only had $500 worth of medical bills.
The next thing that a jury or an insurance company would look at in determining the value of your claim is the amount of lost wages that you sustained as a result of the injury. For example, a surgeon who had to miss work for 3 months as the result of a Cleveland auto accident will receive greater compensation for lost wages than a minimum wage worker who was not able to go to work for the same amount of time. An insurance company (or a jury) will usually want to see paperwork signed by a doctor indicating that the victim was unable to work for the time specified.
Next, a jury or an insurance company would evaluate the pain, suffering, and emotional distress that went along with the injury that you sustained in the accident. If you incurred injuries that are particularly painful or that will last for a lifetime, those injuries will gain more compensation than somebody who was in pain at the time of the accident, but who’s pain has subsequently resolved such that they are no longer in pain.
This brings us into an entirely different topic, which is whether the Ohio Damages Caps apply. This depends on whether or not a given injury constitutes a “Permanent and substantial physical deformity, loss of use of a limb, or loss of a bodily organ system” or a “Permanent physical functional injury that permanently prevents the injured person from being able to independently care for self and perform life-sustaining activities.” See Ohio Revised Code Section 2315.18(B). I cover this topic in detail in my Ohio damages caps blog, and you can visit that page by clicking the link. I am happy to give you a free personal evaluation of your injury claim and its potential value.
If you have questions about any of the legal issues raised in this blog, contact Dodosh Law Offices, LLC at 844 253 5291. Or, you can fill out a contact form and Attorney Dodosh will get in touch with you.