If you have suffered injuries from a slip and fall accident caused by someone else’s negligence on their property, you may be considering filing a lawsuit against the property owner. The biggest obstacle you face is deciding whether seeking compensation is the right choice and estimating the potential settlement if the case goes to trial. If your case is legally valid and the accident was primarily due to the property owner’s fault, filing a lawsuit is the best option, particularly if the defendant’s insurance company is unwilling to offer a fair settlement.
But what constitutes a fair settlement? Several factors determine this. Firstly, you must demonstrate that it is more likely than not that you had an accident due to the negligence of the property owner or their staff and, as a result, sustained injuries. The judge or jury will consider these factors, along with other aspects such as the location of the litigation and the total medical expenses, to determine the value of your slip and fall claim. There is no fixed amount for such an accident. However, there are typical criteria that can be used to determine your worth and ensure that you are adequately compensated.
As previously stated, there is no fixed measure for the value of your claim. Instead, the insurance company will have to consider a range of factors before offering a settlement. This is to estimate what a judge or jury may award if the case goes to trial. Neither an insurance company nor a jury will compensate you without first examining the consequences of the slip and fall accident. The determinants include:
When assessing the value of your claim, the first aspect that the jury will consider is the total value of your medical expenses, including past and future bills. Therefore, you will need to provide the court with valid medical records that clearly indicate the medical services you received, the duration of treatment, and the total costs. You may also need to show the amount your insurer paid, if any, as well as the amount you paid out of pocket.
Depending on where you live, the amount charged by your healthcare providers may vary. In many cases, medical providers are willing to accept lower amounts than what is billed, so it is important to understand the laws applicable in your area. Generally, you can assume that the value of your claim will be at least the total amount of your medical bills for past, present, or future surgeries, medications, or therapies. For example, if your total bills amount to $500 and liability in your case is clear, you are likely to receive that amount or more in your settlement.
Damages for pain and suffering are considered non-economic, which makes them difficult to quantify in monetary terms compared to medical expenses. Therefore, they are regarded as a highly variable component that is determined based on the permanency and severity of injuries sustained, as well as the attitudes of the jurors or judge. Some injuries may qualify for a higher value than others. For example, if you sustain injuries such as broken bones and nerve damage, you will receive a higher compensation because the pain and suffering is serious and long-term. Conversely, if you fell down a staircase but only sprained your hand or ankle and made a full recovery, your compensation for pain and suffering will be lower
If you were unable to work due to injuries sustained in a slip and fall accident, you are entitled to receive the total value of the lost wages. However, this is not simply a matter of stating that you missed work. Instead, the jury will expect you to provide substantial evidence, usually including a pay stub and signature from your employer attesting to your absence from work. A qualified slip and fall accident attorney can help you obtain the proper documents from your employer.
It is essential to clearly demonstrate that you had legitimate reasons for losing your working hours. This means that if you had fully recovered from your slip and fall injuries but remained at home and failed to go to work, the defense can easily deny any lost wage compensation based on this evidence.
However, if your injuries left you incapable of carrying out your normal work activities, you have a high chance of receiving compensation for lost wages. This also applies if you are forced to work part-time or take a lower-paying job due to your injuries.
In a slip and fall accident case, the defense may attempt to shift some of the blame onto you. This is because the defense will always look for ways to reduce the amount of compensation you receive. Even if you were not responsible for the accident, the defense may introduce any evidence that could suggest that you played a role in the incident. If such evidence is accepted by the jury, the value of your compensation may be reduced.
For instance, if the jury determines that you contributed to the accident by 30% and the total damages amount to $1000, the compensation you receive will be reduced by the same percentage. Therefore, the final amount awarded will be $700.
One of the most important factors in being compensated for a slip and fall accident is having a strong and dedicated legal team to represent you. Your legal representation is your backbone throughout the case, and the more experienced, motivated, and dedicated your legal team is, the better your chances of success.
At Lone Star Injury Attorneys, we have the resources and expertise needed to win slip and fall cases. Let our legal team help you get the compensation you deserve. Schedule a free consultation with us today.