If another party’s negligence caused you a bodily injury, the good news is that the law acknowledges the full scope of your injury. What it means is that any considerable injury will affect you physically and financially, but it will also affect you psychologically. Your experience of pain and shock at the time of the incident is physical, but it is also psychological. You experience physical pain, but your psyche must also integrate this experience into itself, which may be a long and confusing process. For example, we all know of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This is when the bodily injury claim calculator comes into the picture. We will talk about it in detail in this article.
How an injury affects you
This is particularly easy to appreciate when a long rehabilitation process with various treatments is necessitated in the period following the accident. A person may be separated from his family for extended periods in the course of treatments, and this is an unusual, stressful experience. Loneliness and depression are two common challenges the patient might find facing him. And this is not even to mention the trauma that may accompany permanent disfigurement or handicaps. This may last as long as the victim lives.
Still, we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that even a minute of physical pain without any long-term effects is not really something quantifiable. Nor is it uniform across the population. Some people take pain lightly, while others dread and fear it. Should we believe the victim’s testimony about his pain? Even if so, who is to say he is able to communicate effectively about it? And below this lurks the underlying question of, assuming we possessed clear information about his experience, how much is the pain of this man’s sprained ankle worth? This uncertainty led to the need for a bodily injury claim calculator.
A bodily injury claim calculator is meant to give us some means of deciding on the financial value of an injury. The first thing to note is that this really sets out to accomplish the impossible, that is, put a number to something that is really immeasurable. But insurance companies, or other parties who are held responsible for compensation, need some way to quantify different kinds of injuries in order to pay for them. Secondly, it’s important to be aware that not all injury cases will be compensated. It has to be true that somebody breached a recognized duty he owes toward another person in injuring him. And it has to be true that, if he hadn’t acted negligently, the injured party would not have been injured.
With a bit of easy instruction, you can use a bodily injury claim calculator to assess your own injury. If you do this correctly, it may bring you close to the kind of figure an insurance adjuster will offer you in compensation for your injury. You won’t be surprised to hear, though, that this gentleman could very well view the matter differently than you do, and will seek to minimize the damage that the insurance company will have to pay. In addition, as we’ll see, making the calculation with the bodily injury claim calculator is not straightforward.
Using the bodily injury claim calculator
Add up all the bills you have paid in consequence of your injury. You will have to take account of medical expenses like ambulance services, hospital bills, surgery, prescription medicines, and physical therapies. Don’t forget that future expenses also count. You may need a medical professional to assist you in putting a number to these.
Next, tally up household costs that you incurred as a result of your injury. Did you need to pay people to perform services for you due to your injury? If someone cooked or cleaned for you, write down all the amounts you paid them. Did someone transport you or care for your children or pets because you were unable? Take time to count up all these costs; they will go next into the bodily injury claim calculator. Again, remember that there may be future costs to consider. If therapies and assistance are going to be ongoing, come to an estimated value for these, too.
The emotional impact
Take a number between 1.5 and 5 and assign it to the emotional injury you suffered as a result of your injury. Think of all the anguish you experienced at the time of the injury and in the period that followed. A long hospital stay means you lived without your family for some time. This is undeniably a lonely and stressful experience. How long did your recovery last? A six-month convalescence taxes your mind more than a three-week recovery.
Of course, consider whether or not the effects of the injury have actually come to an end. Will you be dealing with the residual effects of the injury for years to come, or even permanently? The bodily injury claim calculator wants you to hold all these things in mind and assign them a number. 1.5 is the lowest and 5 is the highest. To help you come up with a figure, remember the following categories: inconvenience, loss of companionship, loss of life enjoyment, anxiety, and depression. It’s almost certain that some of these applied to you. Also, don’t forget the physical pain itself. In order for the bodily injury claim calculator to be effective, you must take the time to do this properly. If the injuring party was negligent to a high degree, this may also allow you to increase your multiplier closer to the 5 marks.
Multiply your digit by your total economic costs. Your new number represents your general damages. Add together your economic and general damages. This is your injury claim. You’re going to take this number to your settlement negotiations and explain to the insurance adjuster how you arrived at it. Now take account of these caveats. Firstly, you will want to take time over your calculation and even do it several times. Secondly, if you really want to ensure you will receive all you deserve, do yourself a favor and employ an attorney. He has experience with the bodily injury claim calculator and will be able to help you take all the right factors into consideration. He will know of aspects of your injury that are important for your claim, but which you have forgotten. In addition, his assessment gives your number more validity in the eyes of the insurance adjustor and he won’t be so easily intimidated by that individual as you might be. Rather than shooting in the dark, your attorney has the experience to know what injuries like yours are realistically awarded.
Bodily injury claim calculator – To assist you in your claim
Before the bodily injury claim calculator can even be introduced, you have to do your homework. You are going to need proof of all the physical and non-physical aspects of your injury. When you sit in front of the insurance adjuster, you will want to have concrete evidence to show him, otherwise, he will diminish your ability to claim. The first piece of homework is to make a doctor’s appointment straight after the accident. If you don’t, and some time passes, the adjuster will claim that your injury must have been mild enough not to necessitate treatment. Even your claims for pain experienced will be evaluated in terms of medical evidence. Whenever you simply make a claim without proof to back you up, the adjuster feels he has the upper hand.
What will actually precede this is your conduct in the aftermath of the accident. In the case of an automobile accident, photograph the vehicles as well as the surrounding scenery. Don’t miss particularly relevant aspects of the scene, like obscured road signs or broken traffic lights. Record the exact time, date, and location of the accident. Your attorney will need this information. He will want to do venue research on this scene, to find out if other accidents have occurred there. He will also check how much money was awarded to the injured party in these cases. This will give him solid backing when he comes in to represent your claim, either in negotiations or in court. Also, speak with witnesses and record their responses. Get the contact details and insurance information of everyone involved in the accident.
The second piece of your homework, before starting with the bodily injury claim calculator, is to methodically gather all medical documentation. Keep records of everything your doctor said. Keep his bills. Keep a diary about the pain you experience in the coming period. This counts as evidence you can use in your favor later on.
Third on your list is to find a good personal injury attorney. You will need him whether you enter negotiations or a court trial. Exercising your right to represent yourself is almost always an error in these cases. Other attorneys know how to manipulate your words against you, confuse you, and make you sound contradictory. The moment you stumble or revise one of your statements, you sound like a potential liar, and the power of your claim goes down. You are new in this kind of scenario, but your attorney has seen hundreds of them. He knows what to expect and what makes for success or failure.
What comes next
You’ll have to decide whether or not you want to file an immediate lawsuit. When you go into negotiations, you might find your position is stronger if you do. You’ve shown you are in earnest. However, many people feel this compromises the friendliness of the settlement atmosphere. After all, if there is the possibility of doing things pleasantly, easily, and efficiently, why not pursue it?
Negotiations will now start. You’ve faithfully done your homework and carefully employed your bodily injury claim calculator, with which your attorney has assisted you. If you are bringing this useful individual with you, you won’t need to know this, but you should not easily accept the first sum offered to you by the adjuster. If your claim is particularly high, you will definitely need him, especially considering you probably will have to go to court.
Now be very deliberate and watchful as you are interviewed. Don’t be quick to admit any responsibility of your own in the accident. If you do, you may actually lose your ability to claim anything at all. Breathe, speak definitely, consistently, and truthfully. You will bring out your medical documentation for viewing. Note that, though it was crucial that you see a doctor after the accident, the insurance company will not be forced to pay for excessive testing or treatments. Therefore, it is not a good idea to run every known medical test on yourself. You will also lose the impression of honesty in everyone’s eyes.
Now the adjuster will run his own bodily injury claim calculator, but you may find it is very different from yours. Your attorney will prevent you from being dismissed or intimidated here. He can argue the points with legal know-how. Remember a couple of other benefits that come with your attorney. He can determine the assets of the at-fault party. He can find additional sources of insurance money under the sleeve of that party. Hopefully and probably, things will be settled right there in that room, and no trial will be needed.
If you must go to trial, be aware of some of the factors contributing to the way you will be perceived. Do you come across as honest, likable, and credible? Or do you stumble over your words, revise your statements, and seem uncertain? Your testimony must be consistent with the testimony of all relevant physicians and their records. Don’t add anything or exaggerate.
Some notes on pain
Getting back to your bodily injury claim calculator, you will find that the number corresponding to your physical and psychological pain is difficult to arrive at. Pain is subjective and is experienced through the lens of one’s own mind, which reacts to the trauma in its own way, in turn determining the quality of the pain. Everyone involved in your case, especially the adjustor, will want to translate your pain into concrete terms in order to value it. Broken bones can be X-rayed and the associated pain would be unarguable, but the pain in tendons, ligaments, and muscles is less quantifiable. Medical documents and testimony offer the terms in which attorneys would like to discuss your pain.
If you have experienced psychological trauma, that is, depression, anxiety, or loneliness, as a result of the injury, plug this into the bodily injury claim calculator to its fullest. But remember to keep all associated evidence of it, like psychologist reports, diary entries, and treatment records. You may need to bring in witnesses to the symptoms of your inner trauma, like friends, family, or doctors. These will all raise your claims of distress to a much higher level of credibility. There is no need to repeat or overemphasize your claims in this area. Just state them clearly and honestly.