how a personal injury case works

Calculating a Personal Injury Settlement

Remember How a Case Works

Perhaps you haven’t even begun to delve into your case, and the first question you have is, “how does a personal injury settlement work?” It is essential to understand the process you are about to take part in. McMinn has helped countless clients settle personal injury cases, so we have compiled some tips to explain how a personal injury case works.

But what if you haven’t been recently injured? Is this information still important? Yes, it is. In 2014 there were around 31 million reported non-fatal injuries in the United States. Due to the high amount of injuries in the United States annually, it is important to prepare in advance in case you are suddenly injured. 95-96% of personal injury cases in the U.S. are settled before reaching a trial. So, it is especially essential to understand how a case works, even if you haven’t recently been injured. One of the worst parts of injuries are that they are sudden and unexpected, so preparing in advance by knowing how a case works will only help you in the future.

Understanding Personal Injury Cases and Settlements

You got into an accident, and you argue that it wasn’t your fault. Now, you want to file a personal injury lawsuit. The last thing you want to think about after an accident is the long process that follows, but in order to get the settlement you deserve, you will need to work with a lawyer to make sure you reach the proper outcome. Here are the steps to follow:

  • Find a Lawyer
  • Select and Sign
  • Discovery and Deposition
  • Negotiations
  • Outcome

To read more about how a personal injury case works read

Infographic: How a Personal Injury Case Works

After an accident, a personal injury lawyer can help you afford to get the care you need. But how does the process work? Check out this infographic for a brief explanation of what to expect when you sign up with a personal injury attorney. Whether it was a car accident, serious truck crash, wrongful death or dog bite - most cases follow a similar pattern.

Calculating a Personal Injury Settlement

One of the first questions someone filing a personal injury lawsuit always asks is, “How much can I get?” Getting into an accident is an expensive ordeal.

The Problems with “How Much Can I Get?”

If it wasn’t entirely your fault, then you deserve compensation that will help cover the cost of your accident. Thankfully, a personal injury lawsuit allows you to receive compensation for both physical injuries and mental pain and anguish you suffered as a result of the accident. You can get the following:

  • Your medical bills
  • Your lost wages
  • Any money spent on your recovery

How Much Will I Get?

After asking, “How much can I get,” victims then ask: “How much will I get?” This question addresses the reality of your personal injury lawsuit, not the possibility or potential of it. The amount you will get is based on several factors, which includes the following:

  • Liability
  • Your history
  • Type of accident and injury
  • The history of the other person

The reason the question “how much will I get” is a problem is because of the previous listed factors. Making a true assessment regarding what your personal injury lawsuit is worth is difficult due to the complex nature of these factors. Therefore, if you want to be happy with your settlement, talk to your lawyer about these questions, and make sure you get the right answers.

What Kind of Settlement Will I Get?

Jason and Justin McMinn work hard to ensure that their clients get the settlements they deserve, and help them understand that how much they can get is not always what they will get. But there is more than just your run of the mill settlement. A structured settlement is a type of settlement that can be reached after a case. What is a structured settlement? It is:

“Type of damages settlement whereby Defendant agrees to make periodic payments to injured Plaintiff over his or her life. Commonly such settlement consists of an initial lump-sum payment with future periodic payments funded with an annuity.”

Structured settlement payments depend on the victim. Sometimes this could result in monthly or yearly payments, depending on what your lawyer works out on your behalf. When it comes to a structured settlement, there are 3 steps:

  • The parties of the settlement agreement agree that the defendant will pay the plaintiff
    periodic payments as part of the negotiated settlement.
  • The defendant transfers the obligation to make the periodic payments to a third
    party assignee, usually an annuity company.
  • That third party assignee purchases the annuity and distributes the payments periodically according to the settlement agreement.

So how do you know if you are entitled to a structured settlement? If your injury or incident resulted in damages that are going to require future loss or expenses, you can explore the options you have with structured settlements. For more information on how a structured settlement works, please read here.

During Settlement: Overcoming Setbacks

Personal injury can be physically, emotionally and mentally painful. No matter what accident you got into, there will be many setbacks ahead of you as you face complicated, complex medical and legal processes. These processes can be long, but they are not always helpful. Here’s how to make the most of it: getting the medical recovery, legal justice, and financial compensation you deserve.

  • Medical And Legal Professionals Should Be Chosen Carefully: Doctors and nurses promise a speedy recovery, but when medical bills pile up it just can’t be over soon enough. Nevertheless, it seems as if there is always another trip to the hospital on the horizon. In addition, personal injury lawyers promise a big settlement, but that isn’t always easy to get. You may have a strong, clear-cut case, but the wrong personal injury lawyer can ruin it anyway. You may have a weak, vague case, but the right personal injury lawyer can succeed anyway. Therefore, choose both your doctors and your lawyers carefully. Don’t be afraid to switch hospitals or law firms if needed.
  • Listen To Good, Professional Advice: Once you have found the medical and legal professional to take care of you, listen to them. Going your own way will only frustrate everyone involved, so cooperate in order to get things done not just on time but as a team– successfully. This means doing the following:
    • Be on time to appointments, meetings, and important dates, not late.
    • Don’t fight, but you can argue when you feel lost or left behind.
    • Discuss ideas and thoughts that you have with your doctor and personal injury lawyer, which will encourage them to do the same with you.
  • Reach A Settlement Early: If you can, reach a settlement early through negotiation or mediation. This will save you money and time, allowing you to turn all of your energy and focus on to getting healthy and able again.

After Settlement: What’s Next?

You’ve finally completed the long, complex legal processes involved in a lawsuit. A settlement was reached, either through negotiation, mediation, or trial. Everything is back to normal, right? Wrong. Unfortunately, you are likely to still have lingering medical, financial, and personal issues to take care. So, after settlement, what’s next? Here’s how to make the most out of your settlement and move on, getting your life back on track:

  • Get Treatment: The most important thing you should do after reaching a settlement is to focus on your recovery. If your injuries were minor, then this will take less time. However, major injuries require long periods of rehabilitation and generous support from family and friends. In addition, listen to your doctor’s advice when it comes to determining the extent of your treatment.
  • Pay Your Medical Bills: After receiving your settlement, you should also make an assessment of your outstanding medical bills– then, pay them. Therefore, it is important that you keep all of your medical records and bills in a safe, easy-to-find place. In addition, if you are continuing to receive treatment, then keep track of the expenses and costs involved. Seek support or financial aid if needed, but put your health first.
  • Check Your Bank Account Balances: After paying your medical bills and any other remaining fees, check your bank account balances. Is there anything left to make ends meet? Depending on the size of your settlement and extent of your injuries, you may have to either go back to work or apply for unemployment benefits.
  • Make Time For Yourself: However, don’t forget to make time for yourself. Spend time with family and friends. Go see a doctor or psychologist if needed. Think about the effects of your personal injury on your life, and try to repair any damage. This will help you forgive, forget, and move on– because after settlement, you have the rest of your life ahead of you.
  • McMinn: Experienced Personal Injury Lawyers

    The McMinn brothers have handled a wide variety of personal injury cases, from car accidents to dog bites. If you can think of it, they’ve handled it.

    Young Austin-area child suffered severe and life-altering injuries in a lawnmower accident. Attorney Jason McMinn negotiated the compensation, resulting in $1,653,300 to our client for medical and other expenses and losses.

    To see more of Jason McMinn’s and Justin McMinn’s verdicts and settlements, read here.

    The McMinn team has been handling cases in Austin for years, and have ample experience to guide you through any process. They can help you in a wide range of areas, from getting insurance maximums to understanding damage caps. All you have to do is ask.

    If you or someone you love is looking to get the best settlement for a personal injury accident, then contact the McMinn Law Firm today at (512) 477-0222, use the live chat below, or use the form on the Contact Us page.