In valuing your claim for purposes of settlement, what we are really doing is making an educated guess as to what a jury is likely to award. Typically, juries are asked to determine whether the other side was at fault and if so, what measure of damages they award to compensate the victim. Damages are essentially the money value of the injuries you have suffered. They fall into two broad categories- special damages and general damages.
Special damages are the readily quantifiable components of an injury. Medical expenses and lost wages are the typical items of special damages. General damages are monies awarded for things like pain and suffering, embarrassment, loss of enjoyment of life, and annoyance and inconvenience. These damages are more difficult to quantify because different people, and consequently different juries, place different values on these items. Moreover, different clients may respond differently to similar injuries.
When we assess the settlement value of a claim, we primarily take into consideration the amount of special damages, what we believe the probability of success to be, the severity of the injuries, the jurisdiction where the claim is pending and the egregiousness of the other parties’ conduct. We base our assessment on what we have seen ourselves and we also keep up to date on developments in cases handled by other attorneys locally and nationally through membership in organizations like the American Association for Justice and the National Trial Lawyers.
At the end of the day, neither we, nor any lawyer can guarantee an outcome or prospectively value your injury case with absolute certainty. What we at Wagoner & Desai, PLLC strive to do is to provide our clients with our best estimation based on our experience, the reasons for our determination, our recommendation, and the options before the client. While past results do not in any way guarantee future outcomes or success, you may be able to glean additional information from our case results page.
Wagoner Desai, PLLC
265 High Street, 3rd Floor
Citizens Bank Building
Morgantown, WV 26505