In monetary calculations, personal injury settlements have no standards. The amount will be based on many factors. But there are basic considerations to take into account when negotiating a personal injury settlement. Knowing what they are will give you an idea of how to proceed with a negotiation.
An Overview of the Personal Injury Settlement
The settlement starts out with both parties giving their acceptable amount to pay or be paid. The amount may be based on similar cases that the parties have researched on and other factors unique to the case. If an insurance company is paying for the defendant, they usually have a predetermined amount to offer. Negotiations may be traded between the plaintiff and defendant. Once they reach an agreement, the defendant pays up and the plaintiff drops the case.
How Is Median Different from Average
A median is the middle range of the settlements you see in various websites and publications. Settlements can vary from very small to very large amounts, so the median can also be in a wide range. An average is a number that you get by adding several amounts and dividing the total by the number of amounts added.
Basic Elements for Negotiating a Settlement According to an Accident Injury Lawyer
An experienced accident injury lawyer can evaluate these factors and negotiate a settlement that is favorable to his client. These are some of the following considerations.
Defendant’s Worth and Possessions
Regardless of the gravity of the case, if the defendant does not own material possessions or funds, the plaintiff must consider this factor in accepting or refusing a settlement.
Damages will include all medical expenses and potential future costs, lost wages and other proven monetary losses, physical and emotional suffering, and punitive damages where applicable. A good way to compute damages is to use the amount awarded in similar prior cases. Punitive damages are included if negligence or malice is proven. Punitive damage is a punishment, so amounts can go higher for large corporations and wealthy individuals.
Liability of Defendant
Liability plays a powerful role in agreeing to a settlement. Although the defendant is clearly liable in a layman’s view, legal investigations take many factors into account when determining liability. In the pre-trial stage, as liability becomes more apparent, the likelihood of both sides reaching an acceptable settlement is higher.