Maximizing Efficiency and Settlements in Small PI Cases
- Datalaw Admin
- Sep 9, 2019
- 0 comment(s)
In specialists’ opinion, Maximizing Damages in Small Personal Injury Cases are better to practice than being blindsided at any point during the case. It will not only help you to be fully prepared but also arm you to take on the defence attorney, insurance adjuster and even the judge if required. You can maximize the value of the case by either reducing or removing the weaknesses in your case.
When the costs of processing the small cases keep on rising, the jurors and insurers constantly reduce the awards and settlements. This whole scenario puts the quite intense pressure on the shoulders of personal injury attorneys directly.
GENERAL DAMAGES IN PERSONAL INJURY CASES
Legal returns for personal injuries other than the job is included “special” damages and “general” damages. Special damages comprised of repayment of lost wages and medical bills, which can be immediately calculated on the basis of the total amount of bills, the amount wages you were earning and proof of time away from the job.
The general damages consist of past pain and future pain and its suffering, past physical injuries and future physical injuries, some permanent disabilities and scarring. The Pain and the suffering include physical pain as well as psychological suffering and emotional torture. It basically associates to how the physical injuries of a person restrict him during his day-to-day hobbies or activities.
Calculating damages for any permanent disabilities, pain and suffering or scarring, is depended on a jury’s discretion on what it thinks is just and fair. The laws don’t enforce any set formula. A jury’s determination is seldom reversed on appeal, although trial judges will reduce a verdict from time to time, only if they think it is undue.
HEAD OF LOSS
Furthermore, in general damages, the claimants are authorized to be awarded rewards or compensation for their financial losses in any sort of accident, basically, this head of loss is known as Special Damages.
While claiming the Special Damages, usually claimants need to provide some necessary evidence in order to back their losses. Without any documentary evidence, the losses they have incurred are unlikely to be considered by the third-party insurers. It is therefore extremely important that claimants keep records and receipts of any expense incurred as the solicitor will request such evidence.
LOSS OF EARNINGS IN PERSONAL INJURY CASES
Suffering a serious injury is very solemn damage. It can often lead you to a significant loss of income and can take you away from work for a substantial period of time.
A claim for loss of earnings forms part of a claim for special damages which is a term for the ‘out of pocket’ expenses incurred or arising as a direct result of an accident. In addition to special damages, a personal injury claim will consist of a demand for ‘general damages’ which is the label given to the monetary value of pain, suffering and loss of quality of life arising from the injuries.
A claim for loss of earnings can be further broken down into two sections:
1. Past loss of earnings
2. Future loss of earnings.
1. Past Loss of Earnings
Where a claimant is Employed
When a claimant is employed, a claim for loss of earnings covers not only basic wages but also any loss of overtime, bonus or shift allowance. Usually, a court will first assess a claimant’s net average yearly income for at least 6 months prior to the accident in order to calculate the average salary. In a straight forward claim, the average monthly wage is multiplied by the period of absence (measured in months) and the resulting figure is deemed to be the value of a past loss of earnings claim.
2. Past Loss of Earnings
Where a claimant is Self-Employed
Calculating loss of earnings is slightly more complicated for someone who is self-employed. Unlike most employees, self-employed individuals have no guaranteed income and the amount earned generally fluctuates from year to year. Courts in Ireland are extremely reluctant to depart from what is represented in historic accounts and records and this can present difficulties, particularly for self-employed individuals involved in a specialized business with little to no available comparator information, who would have experienced a surge in growth had they been able to work during the period of absence.