What Factors Affect a Personal Injury Settlement?
Pursuing a compensation claim after sustaining injuries in an accident is painstakingly complex. Many factors come into play, such as how solid your case is against the defendant. The insurance company from which you seek compensation may also try to trick you into accepting a lower compensation amount than you deserve.
It’s best to consult skilled accident lawyers from a reputable personal injury litigation law firm in Illinois to help you. They can assess your claim and help you determine how much your claim is worth, taking into consideration the following factors:
- The type and extent of the injury suffered
- Witness and expert statements
- Your medical and rehabilitation records and expenses
- The possible future impact on your finances
- Observing and meeting procedural filing requirements and deadlines
A Chicago personal injury lawyer with your best interest in mind can fight aggressively to ensure they help you recover the maximum compensation amount possible. Here’s what they’ll advise you to do to enhance your chances of getting the total compensation you deserve once you file your claim:
Collect, Preserve, and Present Evidence to Support Your Claim
The evidence you present alongside your personal injury claim can make or break your case. The jury will look at the evidence to determine your case. The defendant’s insurance will also evaluate the evidence to decide whether to offer a fair settlement based on the strength of your case.
That means you should do everything possible to preserve evidence, which includes:
- Photos of the accident scene, the damages, and your injuries immediately after the accident
- The medical records, bills, and prescriptions
- Names and contacts of the witnesses at the scene
- Employment records documenting your absence from work and the wages you would have collected had you been at work
- A copy of the police report
Your Chicago injury law firm can also help you collect CCTV footage of the accident scene from the relevant sources. Depending on the case specifics, they may also hire accident reconstruction experts to help them get to the bottom of the events leading to the accident.
Get Medical Treatment
It can be difficult to recover compensation without a medical record of the injuries you sustained in the accident. Medical records provide an accurate picture of your damages and an overview of your expenses for treating the injuries. Your physician will also document a treatment plan, which may encourage the other party to agree to offer a higher settlement.
Get medical attention as soon as possible after the accident, even if you think your injuries are minor. Some injuries, such as whiplash, may not have immediate symptoms but could result in severe complications later. Remember to follow your doctor’s treatment plan, including seeking post-traumatic stress and flashbacks therapy.
Fully Value Your Claim
Many personal injury victims undervalue their claims because they don’t critically think through the expenses they incur due to the injuries. A lawyer from a Chicago injury law firm can help you to account for the following:
- Medical expenses, including emergency costs, treatment expenses, prescription medications, medical devices, and physical therapy
- Out-of-pocket expenses related to the treatment procedures and doctor’s appointments
- Loss of earning capacity and lost wages
- Loss of future earnings if the aftermath of the accident prevents you from being able to go back to work
Don’t forget the non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and emotional distress associated with the injuries. Placing a value on these damages can be challenging, so you should work with a reputable personal injury litigation law firm in Illinois to help you determine the maximum compensation possible.
Don’t Accept the First Offer from the Insurance Company
Insurance companies hardly have a claimant’s interests in mind and will do what they can to shortchange victims. You might think you’re getting a good deal and saving time by accepting the first offer they present, but that’s not always the case. Be patient even as you endure severe pain and your medical expenses pile up.
Your value of missed work days could be worth a lot more than what the insurance adjusters offer you in the first instance. Remember the costly car repairs and the aspect of going through mental health struggles after the traumatic incident. All that adds to tens of thousands of dollars, and a skilled lawyer from a Chicago injury law firm can help you recover it all.
Create a Journal
Since the ultimate objective of your personal injury claim is to maximize the settlement offer in your favor, it’s crucial to document everything you’re experiencing due to the injuries. A recommendable way to do this is by journaling.
Documenting your recovery journey, including the worst episodes of your medical issues, could improve the odds of receiving a more favorable dollar amount as compensation. However, remember that the facts you write down in your journal could be used as admissible evidence in court.
Consider the Long-Term Impact of the Injuries
It’s important to factor in the accident’s short- and long-term consequences, whether you sustained injuries or not. For example, if you suffered injuries and need treatment and therapy for the next three years, you must factor that into your compensation claim. Additionally, if you lose wages in the future, you should also get compensation.
Besides, you may not fully recover from the injuries before your personal injury case goes into trial or negotiation. That’s why you need to remember the expenses during that period when calculating your settlement amount.
Strategic Legal Counsel Maximizing Your Accident Claim
Pursuing compensation in a personal injury lawsuit can be complex and overwhelming, especially if you’re still recovering from the injuries. Besides, personal injury laws can be complicated, and insurance adjusters may try to shortchange you. You should hire a competent lawyer from a top-rated personal injury law firm in Chicago to represent you.
They can scrutinize your case details and put their expertise to work to help you demand the maximum compensation you deserve. Trust the personal injury lawyers at Kramer Injury Law to fight aggressively to help you recover what you rightfully deserve. Call us at (312) 775-1012 to book an initial case evaluation with us.