If you or someone you love has been injured due to the negligence of another, filing a claim or lawsuit may be your best option for recovering damages. But what’s the difference between a personal injury claim and a lawsuit?
Dec. 21, 2022
How Much Is My Case Worth?
Anyone who has been in a serious accident knows how long the recovery time can be and how high your out-of-pocket expenses can mount from medical bills, property damage, and lost wages. Because of this, you should understand how to get professional legal help to file your personal injury claim and be able to answer basic questions like, “How much is my personal injury case worth?” and “How much can I recover after my accident?”
Our law firm, Daniel T Pagliarini AAL, is based out of Honolulu, Hawaii, but we can help accident victims throughout Maui, Big Island, Kauai, Lanai, and Molokai. By working with our team, you’ll get personalized service and a commitment to seeing your case through from beginning to end. Call Daniel T Pagliarini AAL today to get started.
Possible Recoverable Damages in Hawaii
There’s no way to predict exactly how much you’ll receive from your personal injury case, but there are common damages you can pursue that we’ll examine when investigating your case. For example, most accident victims are able to recoup expenses related to medical treatment, lost wages, and property damages, as well as some non-monetary damages like pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment, or emotional distress.
In rare cases, you may be able to pursue punitive damages which are paid on top of regular compensation. However, these are usually reserved for the most egregious acts of recklessness and carelessness for the safety of others.
Factors That Determine Case Value
When you ask yourself what the main factors are that determine your case’s value, you should keep four things in mind.
The first is the extent of the damages, meaning you should be compensated for all expenses directly related to the damage you experienced in the wreck. This could be for your actual car, but can also include personal property that was in the vehicle at the time of the crash.
Second, you’ll have to determine fault as this will affect your final payout. Essentially, the less you can be blamed for the accident occurring, the more compensation you’ll get.
Third, you’ll have to factor in your insurance coverage and the coverage of the other driver. In cases where the insurance settlement covers most or all of your expenses, you may not be in a position to ask for more through a lawsuit. However, if the other driver was uninsured or underinsured, and you have such optional insurance coverage, you’ll be able to pursue your own claim against your insurer for that loss.
Finally, if you sustained extensive injuries, your case will be worth more to pay for immediate and future medical care, if applicable.
Comparative Negligence Rule in Hawaii
The comparative fault (or comparative negligence) rule states that liability can be shared between two parties involved in an accident and compensation will be reduced according to this determination. For instance, if you’re found to be 10% at fault and the settlement was $10,000, you would only receive $9,000. However, you can only seek damages if you were less than 50% liable, making it all the more important to work with an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you build a convincing case.
Steps You Can Take to Maximize Compensation
Many clients ask how to maximize their compensation, and there are a few steps you can take. The best thing you can do is hire an experienced personal injury attorney who’s familiar with Hawaii's state and local laws and can help you gather adequate evidence to help your case. It’s extremely important to keep all relevant documents and evidence to back up your claim. You can also help yourself by seeking a professional medical opinion right away, even if you don’t feel obviously injured. If you wait to seek medical care, an adjuster or fact finder may see this as evidence that you aren’t truly hurt.
Lastly, don’t take the first offer from the insurance company; adjusters will almost always try to lowball you to close the case faster, and you’re better off retaining legal counsel to negotiate for a higher payout.
Prepare for Your Personal Injury Case
If you’re a resident of Honolulu, Hawaii, or any island and would like to know more about maximizing the value of your personal injury case, reach out to us today and contact Hawaii's experienced personal injury attorney, Daniel T Pagliarini AAL.
If you’ve been involved in an accident, it can feel overwhelming trying to remember what steps should be taken next. From medical attention and legal action to gathering evidence and notifying insurance companies, there are many details that need immediate attention.
If you’ve recently been injured in an accident and want to know more about getting properly compensated, contact us for help at Daniel T Pagliarini AAL.