Personal Injury Case Damages
Damages and The Value of Your Personal Injury Case
If you have been speaking with personal injury attorneys about your accident, you are probably wondering “why do lawyers keep talking about the amount of damages in my case”? Damages are just part of “lawyer speak”. Real people don’t talk about damages in the way that lawyer do. When real people talk about damage, they are usually talking about their car being damaged in an accident or something like that. When lawyers talk about damages, what they are talking about is the amount of compensation you would like receive as a result of your injuries following an accident. “Damages are given as pay or compensation for injury done.” O.C.G.A. §51-12-4.
The law (obviously) tries to provide a person injured by virtue of another person’s carelessness with fair compensation following the accident. The law tries to provide the injured person with an amount of compensation sufficient to compensate them for the injuries that they have suffered as a result of the negligence:
When one party is required to pay damages to another, the law seeks to ensure that the damages awarded are fair to both parties. If you believe from a preponderance of the evidence that the plaintiff is entitled to recover, you should award to the plaintiff such sums as you believe are reasonable and just in this case.
The problem with all of the definitions is that they are vague. Nowhere in our law does it say that the measure of compensation should be 2.5 times the total of your lost wages and medical expenses. However, despite that, what you have probably heard from insurers and other personal injury lawyers alike is that your damages should be measured by your medical expenses and lost wages.
Now, it is up to you whether you will accept such a measure of compensation. However, whether you decide to accept an insurers offer of settlement or not, I would encourage you to think about the value of you injuries in different terms. Consider how this event has changed your life. Consider whether a multiple of 1.5 to 2.5 your medical expenses and lost wages adequately reflects the value of the charge in your life following this accident.