If you’re thinking of filing a personal injury claim after being hurt in a car accident, on the job, or due to medical errors, it pays to be informed about the typical outcomes of these types of cases. Experiencing an injury is one of the most stressful events most people will face in their lives, so it’s best to start the process with all the information available to you. Here is some background on personal injury law to think about before beginning your search for a personal injury attorney.
Most cases are settled out of court.
The vast majority of personal injury claims end in out-of-court settlements, meaning the victim of the accident receives a set amount of money in damages from the liable party’s insurance company. Only about 5 percent of cases will ever go to trial—that’s a one-in-twenty chance of going to court. This is because both defendants and plaintiffs usually wish to avoid the publicity of a trial. Ask yourself if you’re willing to go to court to get the compensation you feel you deserve, and make sure your attorney is on the same page before filing your personal injury claim.
Settlement amounts can vary.
The circumstances of the accident, severity of injuries, and amount of lost wages all factor into the damages awarded in personal injury cases. It also depends on the type of personal injury: vehicle accident, property damage, bodily harm, or wrongful death. The variety of factors makes it difficult to determine how much a claim could be worth in damages without knowing the specifics of the case. Traffic accidents are the most commonly cited cause of personal injury claims.
Using an online settlement calculator can help you to determine how much your case is worth. In 2013, the average amount of damages awarded for personal injury cases was $24,000. The number is usually arrived at by adding lost wages to medical costs and repairs and multiplying the result by 4. Determining what you can expect from a settlement will help you decide how to go forward with your case.
Personal injury lawyers work on contingency fees.
For the most part, attorneys specializing in personal injuries and accidents do not charge hourly fees. Instead, they receive a part of the settlement their client is awarded by the insurance company of the person at fault. This provides incentive for accident attorneys to ensure their clients get the highest possible amount of compensation. The typical rate for personal injury lawyers is around 30 percent of the settlement awarded. It’s best to consult with several attorneys before making your decision to ensure that you feel comfortable with the person representing you.
For more information about filing a personal injury claim, contact the law offices of Antin, Ehrlich & Epstein at (212) 221-5999 for a free consultation. Talk with a lawyer who knows the law in your state to make an informed decision before you pursue a personal injury claim, and get the compensation you deserve.