If you were injured in an accident and were not at fault for the accident, then your Jacksonville auto accident attorney will assess your damages before making an initial demand for settlement with the at-fault party’s insurance carrier. He or she will review your medical records, medical invoices, any out-of-pocket expenses and your loss of income, if any, to determine a reasonable initial settlement demand.
Assessing Your Medicals
If your medical records clearly document your injuries caused by the accident and your injuries can be proven by objective tests, such as radiological films, then your medical invoices associated with your treatment will be totaled with your out-of-pocket expenses (supported by receipts) for expenditures such as prescription medication. The total will then be multiplied by a factor of two, three, four or five to arrive at the first real tangible value of your case. The multiplying factor depends upon:
- The severity of your injuries
- Length of time it takes for your to recover
- Intensity of your medical treatment
- Whether you sustained a previous injury in the same area and are still symptomatic
- Quality of your medical records
If you frequently skip your medical appointments or refuse to obey your physician recommendations (e.g. ignoring weight limitations on carrying objects or activity restrictions), then rest assured, the value of your case would dramatically decrease. The insurance adjuster will assume that you are not as injured as you claim.
Assessing Your Lost Income
If your injuries caused you to miss work, then your skilled Jacksonville auto accident lawyer will review your employment records, tax returns, pay stubs and other relevant documents to determine your actual lost income. Only if you have strong evidence of loss of income that will not be successfully challenged at trial, then the total amount of income loss will be multiplied by a factor of two, three or four. This is the second tangible value of your case.
Your initial settlement demand is the sum of your first and second tangible values.