Sep 6, 2022
Personal injury cases can take many different forms – from car, truck, and motorcycle accidents to dog bites to slip and falls/premises liability incidents and even medical malpractice. But when you’re injured through no fault of your own (or at least not 100% your fault), recovering the financial compensation you need to make a full recovery can be critical.
Car accident injuries, dog bites, slip and falls, and other types of claims can entitle the victim to a substantial cash settlement.
But how do you know how much to ask for – or what constitutes a fair settlement – when pursuing a personal injury claim?
In the sections below, we’ll provide all the information you need regarding how much to ask for in a California personal injury settlement.
In personal injury law, a fair settlement amount is one that makes the victim “whole,” meaning he or she is fully compensated for all losses suffered as a result of the accident. As a general rule, once your total damages have been calculated – including things like hospital and medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and more – issuing a demand letter for up to two or even three times as high as the formula’s final results is considered acceptable.
When considering the total amount of your losses, calculating economic damages is pretty straightforward. Such damages typically include:
But while the value of economic damages can be realized through simple arithmetic, determining the value of intangible losses such as pain and suffering, emotional trauma, diminished quality of life, and more is typically achieved through a specific formula.
What is the value of your pain and suffering after a dog bite? Or your emotional trauma after a car accident?
In personal injury law, one of two methods will likely be used to quantify such damages:
Let’s review those formulas in greater detail.
The multiplier method is the most common approach for calculating non-economic damages like pain and suffering or emotional trauma in personal injury claims. To apply the multiplier method, you must add all “special damages” and then multiply that figure by a certain number (usually between 1.5 and 5 – with 3 being most commonly used figure).
Special damages are any economic losses that are easily calculable like those listed in the previous section (medical bills, lost wages, etc.).
Determining which “multiplier” – or the number between 1.5 and 5 – that you should use to multiply the total economic damages for your specific case depends on a number of factors relative to its unique circumstances.
For instance, if you experienced severe or catastrophic injuries following an accident and are facing prolonged medical care, are unable to work due to disability, and will experience a reduced quality of life, the multiplier used to calculate non-economic damages like pain and suffering would likely be 4 or 5.
However, if you sustained some relatively serious injuries (a broken bone and minor lacerations) but are likely to experience a complete recovery, your appropriate multiplier would likely be closer to the average of 3.
The per diem method is another common means for calculating non-economic damages such as pain and suffering. “Per Diem” is Latin for “per day,” and the objective in using this particular method is to demand a specific dollar amount for each day you as the injured victim experienced pain and suffering or emotional trauma due to an accident.
However, it should be noted that one potential drawback to using the per diem method is the challenge involved in justifying a daily rate. For example:
No matter what amount you and your personal injury attorney decide is appropriate, that number will almost certainly be met with pushback from the opposing defense counsel or insurance company. In the majority of personal injury cases, the daily rate is determined based on the injured plaintiff’s daily earnings. Your attorney will likely argue that whatever amount you earned each day prior to the car accident or dog bite injury represents a reasonable figure that should be applied to determine non-economic damages like pain and suffering.
No matter how strong your case may be from a legal/liability standpoint, the at-fault party or his/her insurance company will undoubtedly attempt to minimize your cash settlement award. In fact, major insurance corporations are notorious for arguing that victims are overstating pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and even damages like medical bills or lost wages in an effort to “recover more money.”
However, this standard tactic used by virtually every insurance company is one that the experienced team of personal injury attorneys at Dordulian Law Group (DLG) understands all-too-well.
For more than 25 years, former Deputy District Attorney for Los Angeles County Sam Dordulian and his team of skilled lawyers have been fighting for justice on behalf of injured victims like you. In fact, Dordulian and the DLG team have recovered over $100 million in settlements and verdicts for clients throughout the years while maintaining a consistent 98% win record.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, Uber/Lyft accident, dog bite, slip and fall, or other type of incident, hiring an experienced and proven personal injury lawyer from DLG to handle your case is absolutely imperative.
DLG’s accident injury attorneys know how to fight back against insurance companies seeking to reduce legitimate claims for injured victims. We will consider every relevant factor to help determine a maximum figure for the damages and losses you suffered, including:
The personal injury claims process can be an added headache for injured victims who need fast financial compensation to move forward with life. From the moment the accident occurs through the rehabilitation process and ultimately to the eventual settlement, DLG’s personal injury attorneys are here to assist you every step of the way. Hiring a DLG personal injury attorney who understands and appreciates the value of your accident injury claim will help ensure that you recover the maximum financial damages award you deserve.
If you’ve been injured in any type of Los Angeles-area accident – whether a car, truck, motorcycle, bicycle, Uber/Lyft, dog bite, slip and fall, premises liability, or medical malpractice incident – you may be entitled to a maximum cash settlement through a civil lawsuit with DLG.
Our experienced team of personal injury lawyers are standing by and ready to fight aggressively on your behalf to secure all applicable damages for your claim. And having an experienced personal injury lawyer fighting in your corner can make all the difference in the world in terms of ensuring that you recover the maximum financial compensation you need to make a complete recovery.
If you’ve been injured in an accident, contact DLG today for a free and no obligation consultation. Our No Win/No Fee Guarantee means you’ll never be charged a penny until we successfully recover maximum financial compensation for your claim.
Schedule an appointment online for a free consultation today, or call us directly to speak to our top-rated, expert car accident attorneys.
With DLG’s Los Angeles car accident and personal injury attorneys, you never pay anything upfront or out-of-pocket. If we don’t we win, you pay nothing – it’s just that simple.
Reach out to a member of the trusted DLG team today for a free case evaluation at 818-322-4056.
Our law firm in Glendale, CA advocates for victims of sexual assault, injury, employment disputes, and personal injury concerns.