What is a personal injury claim?
A personal injury claim is a legal action brought by a person who suffers a loss or is harmed by another person’s negligence, carelessness, or deliberate actions. The goal is to compensate the injured party for his or her economic damages (past and future medical expenses, lost wages, travel expenses, etc.) and pain and suffering. If you are injured in an accident, filing a personal injury claim through an experienced personal injury attorney greatly increases your chances of receiving full and fair compensation.
What kind of damages can be awarded in personal injury cases?
An injury can affect your quality of life and your ability to provide for your family. Compensation for the injury can protect both your family and your future.
Common damages that are recoverable in personal injury cases include
- Medical care and related expenses
- Lost wages and future loss of earnings
- Property damage
- Emergency services
- Vocational rehabilitation
- Travel expenses
- Legal costs
- Emotional distress and mental anguish
- Pain and suffering
- Value of household services
The value of damages such as doctor bills and auto repair expenses are straightforward. But there are also damages without an obvious price tag, such as pain and suffering, loss of future earnings, and value of household services. These losses are assigned a dollar value through the claims process.
Pain and suffering damages compensate an injured person for the loss in his or her quality of life. After an injury, you may experience a loss of enjoyment in family, social, professional, and educational experiences, such as when
- a parent can no longer pick up and carry his or her child.
- a devoted recreational runner can no longer run in races.
- a night student no longer has the stamina to work and go to school at the same time.
Unpaid tasks that keep a household running, such as yard work, housecleaning, cooking and shopping, laundry, and some caretaking of children and other family members, are called household services. Injured persons can be compensated for the value of the household services he or she provided before the injury, but can no longer provide. The tasks must still be done so the family might have to pay for outside help, or a family member might take time off from work to keep the household running.
How will a personal injury attorney help me?
Personal injury claims are based on negligence, intentional misconduct, and strict liability. Experienced personal injury attorneys know how to prove that you deserve full compensation because the person who caused the harm was negligent, did something wrong on purpose, or is legally responsible regardless of fault.
An experienced personal injury lawyer understands how insurance companies work. Insurance companies use claims evaluation software such as Colossus to decide how much they are willing to pay for a specific injury or loss. They also use software tools such as DecisionPoint to evaluate your medical bills and make decisions about what claims they will pay.
Experienced personal injury attorneys present your case in a way that will result in maximum valuation by the software programs. Experienced personal injury attorneys also know the limitations of the software. They fight for you to receive the full value of your case, which may include damages that a computer program cannot fairly evaluate.
Do I need to hire a personal injury lawyer?
When deciding how much they are willing to pay for your injuries, insurance companies consider whether you are represented by a lawyer, the lawyer’s history of settling personal injury cases, and the value of those settlements. Claims evaluation software tracks this information. Insurance companies make larger profits when they pay smaller claims, so they want to pay the least amount of money in every case.
Experienced personal injury attorneys
- know how to negotiate with insurance claims adjusters and insurance company attorneys.
- know what a fair settlement looks like and how to get one.
- are ready to go to trial if they can’t achieve fair compensation for you through negotiations.
- increase your chances of receiving appropriate compensation for all your losses, not just the ones with immediate price tags.
How much does it cost to hire an experienced personal injury attorney?
Personal injury lawyer fees vary by law firm, but in general, the firm receives a percentage of the award or settlement in a personal injury case. The lawyers get paid after the case is resolved.
Cerritos Legal Services will provide a free confidential consultation to evaluate your case. Once we take your case, you pay nothing until your case is settled. Our law office provides personalized service including referrals to claims specialists and medical experts. Our team helps you and your family handle your affairs while your case is being resolved. We even work with doctors and specialists who can provide treatment on a lien basis until your case is resolved.
Contact us today for your free consultation with a personal injury attorney at Cerritos Legal: 562-865-9356.