Life tends to throw us curveballs every once in a while. For some, one curveball is having to deal with a personal injury lawsuit. Once you learn more about the impact of an injury, you know how far it ripples into the rest of your life. From expensive medical bills and physical discomfort to time away from work and your favorite hobbies, a severe injury can alter your life.
If you suffer a personal injury, no matter the type, you are probably up against logistical problems, financial loss, and an array of inconveniences. When someone’s negligence causes these problems, you may wonder what the odds of winning a personal injury lawsuit are.
What Are the Chances You Win an Injury Lawsuit?
There are many factors that play into how viable your claim is, especially when it comes to whether you receive a reasonable settlement or court award. One of the best decisions you can make is to partner with an experienced attorney. Studies have shown that personal injury lawsuits with victims who have representation often result in higher compensation than those who pursue a claim on their own.
Additionally, personal injury attorneys are a great asset when you aren’t sure whether you have a successful claim on your hands or how much compensation to ask for.
Factors That Impact Your Claim
In addition to having legal representation, there are several other factors that determine both the success and value of a claim.
A successful personal injury lawsuit requires that you prove the other party was liable for your injuries. Typically, this means providing evidence to show the following.
- The other party owed you a duty of care, such as stopping at a red light or properly maintaining a staircase.
- They breached this duty of care, for instance, by failing to clear spills from the floor or keeping their dog on a leash.
- This breach directly resulted in you sustaining an injury.
- Your injuries incurred damages, whether medical bills, lost wages, or pain and suffering.
In order to win your lawsuit, you have to prove that you are demanding compensation from the correct party. The stronger your case, the more likely you are to succeed. Hiring a lawyer helps to ensure that you have an advocate to investigate your claim, gather evidence, and build a solid case.
Once you are able to prove liability, you have to show the existence and value of damages resulting from the incident. These help to provide a number value for your settlement or award.
Special damages, or economic damages, are the financial expenses or losses incurred due to the injury. You can prove medical expenses with bills, property damage with repair invoices, and lost wages with a statement from your employer. Often, people don’t realize the extent of their damages until a lawyer helps them calculate a sum.
General damages, or non-economic damages, are a little more difficult to calculate. These are not monetary damages but still have an impact on life in other ways. Unfortunately, these tend to be harder to prove because there aren’t direct bills or receipts to attach value.
However, it’s possible at times to prove them with statements from friends, family, or expert witnesses who testify to the ways in which the injury impacted your life. Additionally, pictures and videos can help establish these damages.
- Disfigurement and scarring
- Loss of consortium
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of a limb or bodily function
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Liability Insurance Limits
Typically, settlements for injury claims come from insurance policies.
- Car insurance
- Business liability insurance
- Medical malpractice insurance
- Homeowner’s insurance
These policies have limits on their coverage, meaning there’s a maximum that the insurance provider will pay. If you sustain catastrophic injuries and the negligent party has low limits, the claims adjuster might pay the full amount if the insured is liable.
In the United States, each state regulates the minimal level of car coverage a driver must carry. This can have an impact on your compensation.
For instance, the State of Texas requires 30/60/25 liability coverage for drivers. This breaks down in the following way.
- A minimum of $30,000 of coverage for injuries per individual
- Up to a total of $60,000 per accident
- $25,000 coverage for property damage
If you sustain injuries in a car collision with three passengers, the minimum required coverage limits it to $60,000 for damages for you and the passengers.
Jurisdiction and Venue
The location in which your accident or injury occurs has a significant impact on the amount of compensation available. Insurance adjusters factor in venue and jurisdiction when they calculate a settlement offer.
- Jurisdiction refers to the court with the authority to handle the claim.
- Venue refers to where the claim goes to trial if you pursue a lawsuit.
Some venues tend to be more favorable to victims over insurance companies. If the adjuster senses this, they may offer more money to settle out of court.
What Are Your Odds of Winning Your Personal Injury Lawsuit?
While there’s no way to predict the future and no guarantee of winning your personal injury lawsuit, there are certain steps that you can take to set yourself up for success. First, it’s always a good idea to partner with a skilled personal injury attorney and follow their guidance. When you do, you increase your odds of attaining full, fair compensation through a successful lawsuit.
Whether you suffered your injury in a car accident, from a dog bite, a slip and fall, or any other type of accident, an experienced attorney provides you with the peace of mind you need. While your attorney handles your claim and negotiates your settlement, you have the space you need to focus on your own recovery.
If you sustain an injury due to someone else’s negligence, take the first step to achieving the compensation you deserve. Contact a law firm in your area and schedule a consultation for legal assistance. Often, personal injury law firms offer free consultations and require no payments unless and until they win your claim.