How much would be reasonable for pain and suffering due to my accident? 21 Answers as of October 23, 2012

I was rear ended with the other driver going 55 mph. Totaled my 2009 Nissan. I had no broken bones but I was beat and banged up. Treated as trauma patient because of the severity of accident scene (3 cars involved) Hospital bill was well over $27,000 with $12,000 being CAT scans and radiology. Have severe strained neck and suffered a concussion causing daily headaches. Also the may problem is Hip/low back pain radiating down my leg. Prior spinal fusion 8 yrs ago. With no flair ups in 3 yrs. Been running daily and working out with not pain. Scared I'm going down the same route I went before my surgery. Taking physical therapy 3 days a week for 3 months. Feeling very helpless and not sure if I will even get any pain and suffering because of prior surgery. I have lots of running groups that can vouch for me that I'm a runner and lift weights. The girl that hit me was totally negligent, she said she reach in the floorboard for her sunglasses. How much would be reasonable for pain and suffering. Hospital bill without therapy is $27,000, Dr took me out of work for at least 1 month also. So confused. Need serious advice, laying here on my heating pad in bad pain.

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Tenge Law Firm, LLC
Tenge Law Firm, LLC | J. Todd Tenge
Sorry to hear about your accident and injuries. I believe your situation warrants retaining a qualified personal injury attorney. Most firms, like ours, offers a free consultation. You should consult with one or two injury attorneys. Basically, you are entitled to full payment of all medical bills related to your accident injuries, wage loss, pain and suffering, future medical care, and any permanent impairment or disfigurement. Obviously, some of these damage categories are subject to negotiation, which is why it would be a good idea to have counsel.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 10/23/2012
Mosley, Engelman & Jones, LLP
Mosley, Engelman & Jones, LLP | Britany M. Engelman
The amount of what's reasonable depends on the amount of insurance coverage available. Based on the facts you have mentioned, your case is worth at least $100,000?assuming the adverse driver had that much coverage. If he/she did not, it is important to "open up" the insurance policy my making a limits demand. You should contact an experienced lawyer who can handle this for you and take some of the load and worry off your mind. That way you can focus on your health and recovery.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 10/18/2012
Meyer & Kiss, LLC
Meyer & Kiss, LLC | Louis J. Meyer
First, do you know the policy of the negligent driver? If she only had $20,000 coverage, then that is all you can get from the insurance company. You could go after her individually for the rest. But if she has that low of coverage, chances are she does not have mush in the way of assets. Also, where did the accident occur. The County makes a difference when the insurance company looks to make an offer. If the County is know for small jury verdict, you will get a smaller offer. Feel free to contact me to discuss.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 10/18/2012
Law Offices of Ronald A. Steinberg & Associates | Ronald A. Steinberg, BA, MA, JD
Under Michigan law, you might not have a case for pain and suffering.. you have to prove a serious impairment of body function.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 10/18/2012
Robinette Legal Group, PLLC
Robinette Legal Group, PLLC | Jeffery Robinette
There is no set amount for the pain that you are suffering. Usually, accident victim scan be compensated for economic damages: actual dollar losses such as medical bills, lost wages, and lost future income earning ability. Pain, suffering,humiliation, loss of enjoyment of life, and grief over the loss of a loved one are some of the non-economic losses for which a person may receive compensation. Punitive damages are also awarded in rare cases which serve to punish a defendant for extreme negligence and serve to deter future similar conduct by that defendant and others. Call an experienced personal injury lawyer today for a free consultation to evaluate your claims.
Answer Applies to: West Virginia
Replied: 10/18/2012
    E. Ray Critchett, LLC
    E. Ray Critchett, LLC | Ray Critchett
    You may have a serious case. First, you should not consider settling anything until you know the extent of your injuries. I would recommend seeing your doctor to have this new pain examined further and then I would call an attorney and get a free consultation to discuss your options.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    The Law Firm of Reed & Mansfield
    The Law Firm of Reed & Mansfield | Jonathan C. Reed
    I know you are going to think it sounds self-serving for a lawyer to advise you to hire a lawyer. But there are so many variables it is really impossible for a lawyer to give you an evaluation based on what you have written. Also, this is a public forum so no lawyer wants to appear like a loser by risking an evaluation that is too low. A lawyer who tell you your case is worth a huge amount may be just advertising that he is a hot shot lawyer. Depending on available insurance and the assets of the at fault driver your case could be worth little compared to the injuries. All of us PI lawyers offer free consultations.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Mike Yeksavich | Mike Yeksavich
    Every case is different. Make an appointment with me.
    Answer Applies to: Oklahoma
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    LAW OFFICES OF MANUEL A JUAREZ | MANUEL A. JUAREZ
    You will not get much of a recovery for your pain unless you hire an expert orthopedist to write an evaluation of your case. If he thinks, you may have to have future therapy due to the accident and for how long, that will help. If he thinks you may need a hip operation that would bump your case considerably. Future wage loss, future pain and suffering and future medicals make up the ingredients for a good case. Best of luck.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    David F. Stoddard
    David F. Stoddard | David F. Stoddard
    The first thing you need to find out is how much insurance coverage exists. If you are already dealing with an adjuster, the adjuster should tell you the policy limits of the at fault driver. If you or someone in your household owns a car, you need to get a policy declarations statement (a list of your coverage) from your agent to see if you have underinsured coverage. This provides coverage in addition to the at fault driver's liability coverage. The insurance coverage may be all you will ever get. If the at fault driver has only $25,000.00, I think your claim is certainly worth this and more, but that might be all you can get. If between her and your underinsured coverage there is $100,000.00, the claim may very well be worth that, but it is not clear it is worth that. The more you ask for, the more evidence you need justifying your demand. Other questions are, are your headaches and other problems form permanent injuries that you will have to live with? Do you have any past and/or future lost income as a result of the accident? Will your doctor furnish positive testimony that you have a permanent serious injury caused by the accident? Can you find a purpose for the money that will help replace what you have lost? What county will the case be brought in if you cannot settle (cases in Hampton County usually get higher jury verdicts that than cases in Anderson and Greenville SC. Thus, the settlement value is higher in Hampton than Greenville.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
    The obvious problem as I see it is that there may not be enough insurance coverage to adequately compensate you. have you checked this lady out? What part of town does she live in? what is the size of her house? What was the model of her car? did you check the tax office and register of deeds to see what her property is valued at (assuming she has some in HER NAME ONLY)does she have any judgments against her or tax liens? You need to know the insurance coverage and something about her ability to pay a judgment if you get one. Assuming she has big buck insurance and big time property ownership ask for the moon, somewhere north of $100000. The fact that you have a preexisting condition is a problem but if your doctors confirm your pre injury status and your athletic friends you should be OK> In NC insurance companies have to pay for exacerbation (aggravation) of preexisting conditions. If you don't have a lawyer to help you with all this get one please.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Goodgame Law, LLC
    Goodgame Law, LLC | Jeffrey L Goodgame
    You should consult a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Also, do not give any statements or sign anything from the insurance company. The insurance adjuster's job is to give you as little as possible while an attorney's job is to maximize your monetary recovery. Feel free to contact me for a free consultation.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Hirsch, Closson, McMillan & Schroeder, APLC
    Hirsch, Closson, McMillan & Schroeder, APLC | Paul Schroeder
    You should speak with a personal injury attorney about this. You have a potentially serious case that is worthy of retaining an attorney, who will likely take the case on a contingency fee. Your prior spine surgery should not be a negative issue, as you describe the facts.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Matthew D Kaplan LLC
    Matthew D Kaplan LLC | Matthew D Kaplan
    Your case sounds complicated and you need to make sure you retain an attorney. Yes, you have preexisting issues but the at fault driver is responsible for exacerbating a preexisting condition.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Law Office of Joseph Lamy
    Law Office of Joseph Lamy | Joseph Lamy
    It's unclear if you already have an attorney for this matter or not. If so, he or she should be able to give you an answer to this question. If you do not have an attorney, I suggest that you hire one immediately. You will not be saving any money by trying to settle this case yourself and cutting out the attorney fee. I used to work for the insurance companies and I know that they will severely undervalue your case without an attorney. That said, let's get to your question. Pre-existing injuries can work two ways. They can hurt the value of your case because your back has already been compromised. For you, this should not be too much of a concern, however, because the fusion was 8 years ago and you seem to have made an excellent recovery. Pre-existing injuries can sometimes help the value of your case, because you are much more seriously injured by this accident than a healthy person of the same age. Your attorney should contact your treating physician and ask for his expert opinion. This will help determine how this accident affected your back as compared to the previous injury. He may also indicate that you are permanently disabled from this accident which should add tremendous value for pain and suffering. Your doctor may charge for this service, but it should be money well spent. Without that letter and without full knowledge of your case, it is near impossible for any attorney, including myself, to give you a reasonable $ figure for pain and suffering. If you do not currently have an attorney, I would be more than happy to speak with you. There is no obligation and the consultation is free.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    If you're in Michigan, your insurance is responsible for your medical bills. Your pain and suffering is a wait and see what happens thing.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    THRULAW PERSONAL INJURY FIRM | P.J. Javaheri
    You need to be very careful to not settle too soon. You are not yet at maximum medical improvement. From the facts you provided I am not sure how long it has been since the accident. You should seek legal counsel promptly with a personal injury law firm to be able to make an educated decision.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Ricks & Associates | Kenneth R. Ricks
    Get an attorney quickly. If your therapy bills are an estimated $6,000.00 bringing your medical economic damages to about $33,000 then you could have a claim valued at $100,000 or more but you will need an attorney to get that.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Your best bet is to actually engage a personal injury lawyer. It is impossible to accurately assess a case without a full knowledge of the facts, and for that you should be face to face with your counsel. Your case is substantial.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 10/16/2012
    Magnuson Lowell P.S.
    Magnuson Lowell P.S. | Richard S. Lowell
    You have suffered a very serious injury. At this juncture, there is no attorney that could give you a fair estimate of pain and suffering compensation. You are still having problems. It would be impossible to estimate your damages without knowing a lot more; and without you reaching a level known as maximum medical improvement (MMI) - a condition you are far from. This is not the sort of claim you should be handling on your own. You need to consult with a qualified personal injury attorney - and the sooner the better.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 10/16/2012
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