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How to Calculate the Average Personal Injury Settlement Amount

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Statistics have shown that personal injury claims jumped to $53.1bn in 2022 in the United States. It shows an upward trend in personal injury claims brought to the injury courts. Personal injury lawsuits are filed by the aggrieved party to seek financial and non-financial damages against one or more at-fault that have contributed to an accident/injury. There are different types of personal injury lawsuits. In this article, we’ll discuss the legal forums, remedies, and procedures to file an injury lawsuit. Explore the factors affecting personal injury settlement amounts, including severity, lost wages, and legal stages. Learn to navigate Missouri’s legal process for optimal outcomes with our experienced lawyers at Royce Injury!

Determinants of Personal Injury Compensation

How do you calculate personal injury settlement depends on these main determinants:

  • Injury Severity: Tier 1 injuries (minor injuries); Tier 2 injuries (moderate to severe injuries); Tier 3 injuries(severe to fatal injuries)
  • Lost Wages: Income, salary, and others
  • Medical Costs: Treatment charges, hospital bills, medicine, instruments and devices, operations
  • Pain and Suffering: Psychological impact on the injury
  • Missed Opportunities: Implications for Earning Capacity
  • Property Damage: Vehicle, valuable belongings, phone, laptop, etc
  • Legal Process Stages: Insurance companies, injury lawsuit
  • Punitive Measures: Fines, imprisonment for manslaughter, cancellation of license
  • Insurance Influence: Negotiations with insurance companies
  • Fault Determination: Liability of how will pay the damages
  • Trial Considerations: Evidence gathering and evaluation

Understanding Damages in Missouri Personal Injury Law

Under Missouri compensation law, two categories of damages can be awarded: 

  1. Compensatory Damages: Compensatory damages are financial and non-financial damages that are awarded to cover the money and distress aspects of an injury. Financial damages include medical expenses, wage loss, compensation for effects on earning capacity, property damage, etc. Non-financial damages include mental torture and agony. Under Missouri law, there is no cap on financial damages, however, a cap of around $40,000 for certain injuries, and up to $70,000 for catastrophic injuries. 
  2. Punitive Damages: Punitive damages are awarded as punishment for deterrence of future misconduct. Negligence and gross violation of laws are the cause of injury accidents. Defendants in injury lawsuits are awarded punitive damages so that they don’t repeat such offenses in the future. 

Impact on Settlement Calculations: To calculate personal injury settlement damages, tangible and intangible losses are factored in. For punitive damages, the settlement amount is influenced by the severity of the violation.  

Common Resolutions of Personal Injury Claims 

Personal injury cases are complicated, and the outcome of each type of injury case depends on multifaceted factors. To calculate how much is a personal injury claim worth, some of these factors are: 

  • type of injury case
  • nature of the injury 
  • how severe is the injury and how it impacted the injured party’s life
  • complexity level of the case based on the number of defendants involved
  • Liability of the at-fault party
  • presence or lack of supporting evidence
  • degree of victim’s contributory negligence 
  • financial and non-financial implications of the injury 
  • punitive aspect of the case 

The typical personal injury settlement amounts for injury suits are calculated on the basis of the factors mentioned above. There are other informal channels through which the parties may reach a settlement outside court. Some parties make out-of-court settlements through insurance companies. The forms of mediation are also utilized by parties in other cases to avoid lengthy court proceedings. Injury lawyers also help the parties to carry out mediation to reach fair compensation as most laymen do not have the information on what is a typical personal injury settlement in their case.

Illustrative Settlement Scenarios in Personal Injury Cases 

In the following scenario, you will learn how are personal injury settlements calculated. The settlement amount is calculated based on the liability of the at-fault party. 

Scenario 1: Personal injury claims where liability is clearly established

  • Minor pedestrian injuries: A pedestrian collided with a car on a crosswalk where the driver failed to stop at the red signal and sustained minor injuries, bruises, and scratches. 
  • Calculation of settlement: The liability of the driver is clear, and the victim will be awarded financial and non-financial damages under the category of pedestrian accident cases.
  • Evidence production: The victim will show that the driver did not observe traffic rules and caused the victim to suffer injuries. 
  • Negotiation for settlement: A settlement amount is negotiated based on the multifaceted factors discussed above. The court will also consider what is the average settlement for personal injury in pedestrian accident claims when awarding compensation under this scenario. In pedestrian accidents, the average settlement is between $25,000 to $40,000. 

Scenario 2: Personal injury claims where liability is complicated to establish

  • Semi-truck accident injuries: A car is rear-ended by a semi-truck driver who failed to observe his routine compliance with rules for his sleep apnea issue, and the road was also poorly maintained. The accident resulted in the immediate death of the driver and severe injuries to the passenger’s spinal cord. 
  • Calculation of settlement: The amount of settlement will be quite high in this scenario as the consequences of the accident are severe, in terms of financial, non-financial, and punitive damages. 
  • Evidence production: The victim will have to heavily rely on the assistance of a personal injury lawyer to gather the relevant evidence. 
  • Negotiation for settlement: Establishing liability in this scenario will be complicated as it will involve many parties, including the truck driver, trucking company, government agency, etc. The personal injury settlement calculator for semi-truck accidents shows the settlement between $30,000 to several million dollars in financial and non-financial damages. 

Get a rough idea of compensation with the help of the personal injury compensation calculator here.

The Role of Legal Representation in Maximizing Injury Settlements 

A personal injury lawyer is critical in maximizing injury settlements in the following ways: 

  • Navigating the complex concept of liability: It is crucial to note that each type of personal injury lawsuit has its own complications, and you can’t always know which part you should sue to rape the maximum benefits of settlement. Personal injury lawyers specializing in each type of injury lawsuit not only know how to use but also who you can sue. They also give you insights about the type of damages you can claim. They also know what is the typical settlement for personal injury similar to yours and provide legal advice accordingly.
  • Legal representation in negotiations and filing of injury suits: Negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf to reach a fair settlement. If the negotiations fail, they also extend their legal assistance in filing the personal injury lawsuit, managing the paperwork, and following through with the mandatory procedures in the court proceedings. 
  • Gathering of evidence and compilation of facts: Injury lawyers are also experts in gathering the relevant evidence crucial to sustaining your case.
  • Utilizing the informal channels of settlement: So personal injury lawyers also help their clients reach an out-of-court settlement in minor personal injury cases. The minor personal injury settlement amounts examples stated above is one scenario of many such situations in which the injury lawyers play a crucial part in negotiating a fair settlement for their clients without them having to go to lengthy court proceedings. 

Missouri’s Time Limits for Personal Injury Legal Action

The Missouri statute of limitation imposes a limit on bringing personal injury claims within 2 years from the date of the occurrence of the accident or injury. If you fail to bring the claim within this stipulated time frame, you will lose your right to show the at-fault parties. The principles of equity apply to personal injury lawsuits as well, with states that the law only aids the vigilant and not the indolent. It is crucial to bring your personal injury lawsuit as soon as possible after you have reasonably recovered from the injuries. Always make sure to keep the medical receipts and all other relevant evidentiary documents with you if you intend to file a claim at the at-fault party. How much for personal injury settlement also depends on such evidentiary documents.

Projected Timeline for Personal Injury Claims and Settlements 

Personal injury lawsuits may take between 12 to 18 months to be settled by the court. It depends on the nature of the injury, the complexity of the case, and the number of parties involved in the injury lawsuit. 

Settlement Payout Process for Personal Injury Cases 

With Insurance companies: Settlement is negotiated with the help of an injury lawyer and a settlement agreement is drafted. Once the insurance company and the victim have reviewed the settlement contract, and signed it, the insurance company proceeds to pay the injured party according to the Mod of payment agreed upon between the parties under the contract. 

With injury Court: An award decision is given in favor of the danger Party by the injury Court at the end of good proceedings. In the award, the court determines the amount of compensation to be paid, the mode of payment, and whether the composition will be paid in lump sum or installments. 

Calculating personal injury claims is a complex process and you will need the assistance of expert personal injury attorneys to navigate the legal process.

Our expert lawyers, who are well-versed in all categories of injury suits, at Royce Injury are here to help!

Jason Royce Allen

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