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How much is my Personal Injury Claim Worth?

Calculating how much a personal injury claim is worth depends on the nature of the injury, whether it is permanent or not and how it will affect an individual for the rest of their life. Compensation awarded for personal injury claims can vary from a few hundred pounds to several hundred thousand pounds and occasionally awards can run well into the millions, and therefore there must be a thorough analysis of the circumstances surrounding an individual case in order for it to produce an accurate compensation figure.

Eligibility for Claiming Personal Injury Compensation

Before asking how much is my personal injury claim worth you must first investigate if you are eligible for claiming personal injury compensation. To be eligible to make a personal injury compensation claim you must have suffered an injury due to the negligence of at least one other party. Negligence could be caused by a third party taking inadequate steps to reduce the chance of an accident occurring as well as increasing the chances of an accident happening beyond acceptable levels due to a failure in their duty of care.

Regardless of where you have been injured, be in the workplace, in a road traffic accident, after contracting a disease in hospital or have been bitten by a dog, if the injury was caused by a third party due to their negligence, you may be eligible to claim for personal injury compensation and therefore you should seek legal advice before you take any further action.

Calculating how much a Personal Injury Claim is Worth

Many factors are taken into account when calculating how much a personal injury claim is worth including the gender and age of the victim as well as their general health. Loss of amenity as a result of an accident or preventable illness is also not usually factored into injury claim calculators – as similar injuries will affect different people in different ways – and this is something that can influence the value of a compensation claim considerably.

The value of compensation awarded can vary greatly depending on the injury, for example injuries to hair could receive a greater compensation settlement than a broken arm, it may seem odd that a seemingly superficial injury – if you have never experienced it – could be compensated higher than a broken limb, but this further illustrates the need to treat each case individually.

What is Contributory Negligence and how will it impact my Personal Injury Compensation Claim?

How much a personal injury claim is worth may also depend on the role of the claimant in their injury. If the claimant is deemed to have been negligent with regard to their personal safety and contributed to the cause or the extent of their injury, the final compensation settlement could be reduced to reflect the claimant´s own lack of care. This could mean that the final amount of compensation awarded may be considerably lessened if the claimant is found to have been personally negligent.

If the value of a personal injury is estimated before a full personal injury assessment, bear in mind that it is unlikely this estimate covers the possibility of contributory negligence and evidence of that could negatively impact the compensation awarded to the injured victim.

What should I do after an Accident and Injury?

Your primary concern following an accident should be looking after your personal health and not wondering how much a personal injury claim could be worth. You could significantly impact the amount of compensation you receive by failing to seek professional medical attention at the first practical time available to you.

Taking road traffic accidents as an example; a driver may suffer cuts and bruises, but nothing serious enough on first view worth taking a trip to the doctor. However, if the symptoms of whiplash were to appear after a few days, the defence could argue that the driver contributed to their own injury by failing to consider their own well-being. Therefore the defence could argue that the driver should accept some responsibility for the severity of his or her injury.

Your grounds for a personal injury compensation claim may be reduced by your failure to seek treatment or report an accident to the relevant authorities and, ultimately, the failure to follow certain procedures after an accident and injury may make a compensation claim unviable.

Evaluating a Personal Injury Compensation Claim

When claiming personal injury compensation, there may be an early evaluation of how much your personal injury claim is worth. This will be merely an estimate, as many additional factors are incorporated into the final settlement. When estimating the compensation you are likely to receive for personal injury claims, the figures will often be based on general damages alone – rough compensation values assigned to body part injuries by reviewing past legal cases and various legal precedents.

No two cases are the same and therefore, in addition to the general damages for a physical injury, factors such as your loss of amenity – or how the injury you have sustained has had a detrimental effect on your quality of life – are also taken into account.

Frequently you can see personal injury compensation values where the top estimate is four or five times as high as the lower limit. Only a personal injury solicitor can calculate where the claimant falls within this range once all the facts of the case have been assessed.

Personal injury compensation claim can also include ‘special damages’ which are awarded to cover any costs incurred by the claimant as a direct result of their injury. Special damages can run into millions of pounds, especially if the claimant’s injury requires medical treatment for the rest of their life. Alternative transport costs, medical aids, alterations to the claimant’s home to accommodate a wheelchair, events missed or even cancelled flights are all aspects that could be factored into any special damages claim and could amount to significantly more than any compensation amount awarded for physical and/or emotional injury.

Time Limits for Claiming Personal Injury Compensation

In accordance with the UK Limitation Act 1980, there is a limit on the time you have for claiming personal injury compensation. A claim must be made within three years of the date the injury was received or within three years of the date you first became aware of your injury – this is also known as the ‘Date of Knowledge’. Even if the injury was sustained at birth, a child can commence a claim for personal injury compensation at any time until they reach the age of 21.

There are certain exceptions to the limitation law which can impact the claim period available and it is best advised that you speak to a personal injury solicitor to ensure your claim is not at risk of being time barred by the Statute of Limitations.

What to do if you are Offered an Early Settlement

An insurer may pursue an early settlement to a personal injury compensation claim, even before the victim has enquired about legal advice. The compensation awarded for a personal injury claim can be quite variable and generally the insurer is keen to obtain a quick and final settlement in order to avoid paying the legal costs of the claimant or when faced with a personal injury claim that could be worth a substantial amount.

When claiming personal injury compensation, it is important to remember that the insurer may not have your best interest at heart. It is in the company´s interest to pay as little as possible and they may make direct contact with the victim soon after the accident and offer compensation for injuries and inconvenience caused. It is best advised that the victim seek legal advice as soon as is realistically possible, as this is of the utmost importance as it will allow the victim to ascertain how much their personal injury claim is worth and compare that evaluation with the settlement on offer from the insurer.