Have you ever watched Pawn Stars, American Pickers, Antiques Roadshow, Storage Wars, or something similar? You learn a little bit of history, and then you learn how much the piece of junk the person is holding is worth. The history and the appraisals are often equally surprising, so it’s very entertaining.
One of the reasons we find it so hard to look away when these shows are on is because we all have some stuff sitting in our attics or out in the garage that we dream may be worth millions. If we didn’t have these shows, we wouldn’t care that the closet in the spare bedroom is getting too full to close the door — it would just be clutter. But with the knowledge we gain from these shows, we realize we could be sitting on a pile of “rusty gold.”
We see a similar mindset among our personal injury clients. Until someone tfold them otherwise, they thought the pain they were dealing with was simply bad luck, or just something they had to learn to live with.
Realizing you might be able to seek compensation for an injury you have suffered is an eye-opening experience. You immediately have a million questions on your mind. One of which is “how much is my case worth?” And that’s a tricky question. How much a case is worth depends on a number of factors.
First and foremost, is the seriousness of the injury. Personal injury lawsuits are designed to compensate people who have been injured and put them back in the position they would have been if they had never been injured — or at least as close as possible since none of us have access to a time machine. The system is not set up to punish the person or organization that caused the injury. Rather, it holds them accountable. So, the worse the injury, the more it is worth.
To complicate matters, similar injuries are often not worth similar amounts of money. One person’s broken arm may be worth much more than another person’s. The healthcare costs may be similar for similar injuries, but that is about it. The other factors that are taken into consideration vary wildly. For example, if I slip and fall in the grocery store and break my arm I will miss some work while I recover, and I can try to recover the income I lost from the store. If the same thing happens to Justin Verlander, the Houston Astros’ ace pitcher, the store may have to pay out a lot more. Justin Verlander’s arm is worth way more money than mine.
A case may also be worth more or less based on the evidence available to prove the case. Taking pictures of the scene of the accident and visiting the doctor as soon as possible after an injury occurs are the best way to preserve important evidence.
There are so many factors that go into determining how much you may get by filing a personal injury case that the only way to get a good estimate is to speak with an experienced attorney. If you would like to make an appointment to speak with one of the attorneys in our office, please contact us today to schedule a free initial consultation.