Attorney Evans Agrapidis Explains How Damages are Assessed in Personal Injury Cases
It is common knowledge that injuries are diagnosed by a doctor through an examination and perhaps x-rays. This step can tell you the extent of the injury in order to determine a treatment plan to get better. But what about when an incident involves a legal claim and compensation comes into question?
Evans Agrapidis, founder of the Agrapidis & Maroules law firm in Jersey City, New Jersey, has decades of experience with personal injury law cases involving everything from work injuries to car accidents to wrongful deaths. He says while the initial assessment from a doctor (and ensuring your injuries are medically documented) is an important component, there can be a long rehabilitation process that can be costly — and that should be considered as part of the claim. Typically, pain and suffering, lost income and medical expenses are considered when evaluating the value of a claim.
Medical Expenses are Factors
When deciding how much an insurance company will pay through a settlement or a court decision, there are a number of factors that are looked at, says Evans Agrapidis. For example, aside from medical costs for current and future treatments, there will be considerations for lost income for not being able to work.
There is no price list or menu, however a common formula used by insurance companies includes medical bills, property damage and lost wages. Meanwhile, general damages cover non-monetary considerations such as pain and suffering and physical distress. For auto accidents, insurance companies often use a mathematical formula in order to arrive at a value which will assist them with negotiation.
Negligence Can Play a Role
The percentage of negligence of each party is also looked at in evaluating personal injury claims. In the case of vehicle-related injury claims, negligence could include reckless driving, talking on the phone and driving, and driving under the influence. The law firm of Agrapidis & Maroules deals with negligence in motor vehicle accidents, construction site accidents, dog bites and slip and fall incidents to name a few.
In slip and fall cases, the court will look at details such as if the defendant presented enough warning about a potential hazard (such as a slippery floor or broken steps) or if the defendant had knowledge of the hazard, according to Evans Agrapidis.
Important to Act Quickly Following Injury, Says Evans Agrapidis
Something to keep in mind, says Evans Agrapidis, is that every personal injury case is unique and there’s no “set” amount you can expect. In fact, he regularly tells his clients that there is no published price list which states the value of an injury. Years of experience representing these cases allows Evans Agrapidis to give a reasonable range of the dollar value of an injury in a personal injury case.
However, it’s important to secure legal representation as soon as possible, as all states carry a statute of limitations for legal action related to injuries. Experienced attorneys can help guide you through the process to ensure you get the proper attention and compensation you deserve and that your injuries are properly documented in the event that a lawsuit is necessary.