Each personal injury case is different and must be considered on its own particular facts. However, even though the assessment of personal injury compensation is very much an inexact science, it is nevertheless usually possible to provide a reasonable indication as to the likely range of compensation for an injury claim based on a number of relevant factors. In general terms, three of the most important factors are:
The type and severity of the injury are usually the single most important factors when assessing the appropriate compensation for pain, suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life. This type or category of compensation is known as general damages. Naturally whether the injury is permanent or resolves within a few weeks or months will hugely influence the value of any compensation claim. The severity can broadly be categorised from minor all the way through to severe and/or permanent conditions.
2. Expenses and Losses
It goes without saying that suffering a personal injury in an accident can result in enormous financial consequences for an injured party. The basic aim of compensation is to try and put the injured party back in the position he/she would have been if the accident had not taken place. A practical example of this principle is seeking compensation for loss of earnings, medical bills, out-of-pocket expenses, vehicle repair costs, etc. incurred as a result of the accident or injury. This category or type of compensation is known as special damages. In addition, to specific losses incurred such as loss of earnings or medical bills up to the date of the claim, it can in serious cases also include compensation for the future cost of medical care and future loss of earnings.
(Or put more simply blame) is a major factor in the ultimate success of all personal injury claims. This is a highly technical and complex topic. However, unless liability is absolutely clear-cut such as a rear end road traffic accident claim, most insurance companies and their lawyers will try to argue that the victim is fully or at least partly to blame for the accident. That’s why the more clearly you can establish the wrongdoer’s fault the greater it will enhance the prospects of success for your personal injury claim. Quite simply, if fault cannot be established then it may not be possible to bring a personal injury claim for compensation no matter how serious your personal injuries are.
The InjuriesBoard, which is the State body responsible for assessing personal injury claims, recently published its Book of Quantum which provides some general guidelines as to the amount of compensation that might be awarded for different types of injuries. However, the Book of Quantum, whilst helpful, is limited in so far as it does not give information on how to assess compensation where there is more than one injury or multiple injuries (e.g. a broken arm and soft tissue neck injury), and also does not give any guidance to claimants in relation appropriate compensation for special damages. There is no substitute therefore for getting good quality legal advice from a specialist personal injury law firm, who can advise you fully in relation to these issues.
To find out more about making a personal injury compensation claim contact us for a no obligation free case assessment.