How much your back injury is worth in a lawsuit depends on many factors unique to your situation. If you work with a personal injury lawyer, they can calculate your losses by adding up your injury-related receipts, bills, and invoices. They can also estimate the value of your pain and suffer by determining your condition’s effect on your life.
Factors That Determine How Much Your Back Injury Is Worth in a Lawsuit
These factors could affect how much you could recover through legal action:
Your Injury’s Severity
The more severe your condition, the more medical treatment you will likely require. You can include the cost of medications, hospitalization, and various procedures in your case’s value. Your lawyer can also consult field experts (such as medical professionals) to learn about healthcare costs you haven’t incurred yet.
If You Can Participate in Activities You Could Before
Your back injury may have entirely transformed your life. If you can no longer participate in your favorite hobbies (like going to the gym, for example), your lawyer can translate that hardship into dollar terms.
If You Have a Solid Case Proving Liability
The amount of compensation you could receive depends on your case’s strength. The stronger your case, the more you could recover through a back injury lawsuit.
Supporting evidence could comprise:
- The accident report
- Your imaging scans
- Testimony from your doctor
- Photos and videos of the accident scene (if available)
- Your injury-related bills and receipts
- Accident reconstruction data
- Eyewitness testimony
Choosing a personal injury lawyer is important when it comes to building a strong case against negligent parties. With their experience and expertise, personal injury attorneys can handle all aspects of your case while you focus on your recovery.
Your Missed Time From Work
Your lawyer can review your employment records to calculate your lost income, tips, bonuses, and employee benefits. They can also consult with those in your employment field to learn more about your reduced future earning capacity.
Your Day-to-Day Life
As noted, a back injury can completely transform your life.
When assessing your day-to-day function, your lawyer may ask:
- Can you move without requiring an assistive device?
- Can you live independently?
- Can you continue working?
- Has your back injury negatively affected your mental health?
- What’s your prognosis?
Your lawyer may consider other factors when calculating your past, present, and future injury-related losses.
Your Out-of-Pocket Expenses
While preparing your lawsuit, you may have already spent some of your own money on various items, such as wheelchairs.
These expenses are compensable through legal action and may comprise:
- Modifications to your family home. You may need widened doorways, wheelchair ramps, and other handicap-accessible modifications to accommodate your condition.
- Childcare expenses. You may need help taking your children to school and supervising them. You could include the cost of hiring a childcare professional in your lawsuit’s value.
- Adult diapers and other medical items. You may struggle with incontinence after your back injury. If you need certain items to make your daily life easier, you could also sue and recover their costs.
- Transportation expenses. You may require transportation to and from appointments if you cannot drive independently. These expenses are compensable through legal action.
- Travel costs. If you require medical attention at a facility that’s far away, you could seek compensation for gas, parking fees, and tolls.
These are just some factors a personal injury lawyer may consider when estimating your case’s value. Again, how much you can recover depends on your situation. If possible, keep all documentation related to your injuries, like repair estimates. Your lawyer can use this information when calculating what you need.
You Could Recover These Losses Through a Back Injury Lawsuit
There isn’t an average value for back injury lawsuits. How much an injured person can recover depends on their situation.
Yet, some compensable losses in injury cases include:
- Medical expenses. You can recover the full cost of your past, present, and future healthcare expenses. This can offer coverage for hospitalization, medications, therapy, and other necessary services.
- Lost earnings. Suffering a back injury can cause you to miss work. You can recover the cost of lost tips, bonuses, benefits, and paid time off. You can also recoup compensation for loss of earning capacity if your injuries will affect your income well into the future.
- Property damage costs. For instance, if you were in a collision, you could recover the cost of replacing or repairing your vehicle. You could pursue other items damaged in the collision, too, like broken prescription glasses.
- Out-of-pocket expenses. These could include childcare costs, temporary transportation arrangements, and other expenditures.
- Pain and suffering. Pain and suffering offer compensation for the physical and emotional turmoil your back injury caused.
- Mental anguish. If you developed anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), you could seek financial recovery for those challenges.
This isn’t an exhaustive list of the damages you can recover.
Considerations That Could Improve Your Chances of Recovering Damages
You want to do everything in your power to ensure a positive outcome in your personal injury lawsuit. Some considerations include:
Seeking Medical Attention Immediately
Back injuries can sometimes lead to further injuries, especially if they involve the spinal cord. However, seeking medical attention can stabilize your condition and control the symptoms you experience. What’s more, the information you get from your medical team (like your lab test results) can supplement your case. As noted, the more information you have to support your case, the better the potential outcome.
Filing an Accident Report
If your accident happened on a work site or another property, locate the person in charge and request an accident report. Fill out the report in full detail, providing information about what happened. This can serve as evidence later on during settlement negotiations or if your case goes to court.
Acting Within the Appropriate Period
Again: each civil lawsuit comes with a filing deadline. You generally have more time to sue an individual than you do a government agency. To uphold your right to litigation, it could be wise to discuss your case with an attorney.
Refraining From Posting About the Incident Online
Anything you share on a social media forum is public. That means, if the insurer sees you understating the severity of your condition (or assuming fault), they could offer less money than you’re really owed. Only you, your immediate family members, and your legal team need to know about your case’s details.
Refusing to Give a Recorded Statement
Some insurance companies are notorious for taking advantage of injured people. The liable insurer in your case may ask you to give a recorded statement—which benefits nobody but the claims adjuster. They hope that by asking “loaded” questions, you’ll say something to discredit your case.
When you work with a lawyer, they can supply the liable insurer with all the information it needs to decide on your claim.
Contacting a Personal Injury Attorney
You should consider contacting an attorney as soon as your injuries allow. Once you hire an attorney, you entrust your legal matters to a professional.
To pursue what you deserve through a back injury lawsuit, your lawyer can:
- Calculate how much your back injury case is worth: An attorney can identify your recoverable damages by consulting with field experts and using various formulas.
- Investigate the accident: They can investigate the cause of your accident and determine liability. Through their investigation, they can collect and organize evidence to support your case.
- Send a demand letter to the liable insurer: Before filing a lawsuit, your lawyer may attempt to settle your case through an insurance claim. This requires sending a demand letter that outlines the cost of your damages, the cause of your injuries, and how much compensation you’re requesting.
- Negotiate with the liable party: In a perfect world, the insurance company would see your demand letter and offer fair compensation for your losses. Yet, it may offer a lower amount, prompting negotiations. Here, your attorney can go back and forth with the claims adjuster, advocating for what you deserve.
- Represent you at trial: Going to court is more complicated than it seems. Both sides must exchange evidence, and your lawyer must present a compelling case. Yet, with legal help, you can rest easy knowing you have someone fighting for the best possible outcome.
Many lawyers who handle back injury cases work on a contingency-fee-basis, charging nothing upfront or out of pocket for their help. This means you could retain a lawyer without dipping into your savings.
Frequently Asked Questions About Pursuing a Back Injury Lawsuit
It’s reasonable to have questions as you consider filing a back injury lawsuit. Some of those questions may include:
Should I Settle With the Insurance Company?
After learning about your back injury, the liable insurer may offer a car accident settlement as compensation. Yet, these initial settlement offers are typically far less than what the injured party deserves. So, you should think twice about accepting the first offer—especially if you haven’t fully recovered from your condition.
Your personal injury team can assess your losses and explain what constitutes a fair settlement offer. Then, they can fight for that amount.
How Long Does It Take to Resolve a Back Injury Case?
Like your case’s value, how long it takes to resolve a back injury case depends on your situation. An attorney can work to resolve your case swiftly. They can also prevent any delays from derailing your lawsuit.
What’s the Most Money I Can Recover After Suffering a Back Injury?
Many states don’t cap how much you can recover through a personal injury lawsuit. However, you should consult a personal injury law firm in Georgia just to make sure. Some laws change from year to year, and you want to remain abreast of any updates.
Does the Type of Back Injury I Suffered Determine My Settlement’s Value?
The type of back injury you suffered plays a huge role in how much you can recover.
Examples of back injuries that could merit compensation include:
- Herniated discs
- Fractured vertebrae
- Nerve damage
As noted, the more severe your condition, the more you could recover.
Who Can I Sue in a Back Injury Lawsuit?
Who you can sue in a back injury lawsuit depends on your situation:
- You could sue a negligent motorist following a collision.
- You could sue a property owner after suffering a slip, fall, or other premises liability-related incident.
- You could sue a negligent healthcare provider if you or a loved one suffered medical malpractice or nursing home abuse. You could also sue if your child suffered a back injury from a traumatic, poorly managed birth.
- You could use a product manufacturer if a defective product caused you harm.
Depending on your situation, you could hold multiple parties accountable for your losses. A lawyer can review your case, determine the at-fault parties, and seek compensation from them.
An Attorney Can Fight for Compensation After a Back Injury
If you suffered a back injury, you have the opportunity to partner with a lawyer. They can explain how much your back injury is worth and manage other aspects of the claims process. As noted, time is a huge factor in your ability to file a lawsuit. Consider your legal options sooner rather than later.