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What is my case worth?

 

The answer to that depends on MANY factors and how the stars line up.  I know that is not the answer most want to hear; and I could tell you you have "A Million Dollar Case" just to get your business, but exagerating doesn't do either of us any good.

 

The FIRST question is how much money is available to pay your claim?  Most people in SC only have $25,000.00 in auto coverage; often, that is all the insurance available and if you sue the wrongdoer, it is not likely you'd get anything out of him individually.  You may carry "Underinsured Motorist Coverage" and probably just in the amount of $25,000.00. So a typical case will have about $50,000.00 in available insurance coverage.

 

Also, There is no mathematical formula for assessing damages, but USUALLY you can count on the settlement being at least as high as the medical bills (unless the medical bills are for unrelated or unnecessary procedures). I strive to get at least 3x the medical bills, but that doesn't always happen.

 

The next question is how badly were you injured?  If it is a life long disability and you may need future medical procedures, your case is worth more than someone who just went to one doctor visit.  Are there permanent scars? How long do you have to live with your injuries?  These are some of the basic questions to ask in determining the value of your case.


Additionally, we always consider the degree of fault of the person who injured you.  If they were drunk driving, a jury is likely to punish them and reward you; if it is a more ordinary case of not being able to stop because the road was wet, a jury will not be so harsh on them.

Finally, there are other factors which come into play. What county were you in? In wealthy counties, the verdicts seem to be lower, but in poor, rural counties, the verdicts are higher. Have you made 10 claims in the last 10 years? What are the parties like?  If a nun runs over a serial killer, that killer may recover nothing, but if a serial killer runs over a nun, she will probably recover much more!  How do you sound to a jury of your peers? Are you angy and demanding? Are you meek and hurt? These things all make a difference!

Since there are so many variables which factor into case valuation, I almost never say what I think a case is worth.  I've been surprised by and disappointed in final figures too many times!