Depending on the facts, you could get much more than that. 3x damages is just an average. Certain cases are worth vastly more money. We certainly push for larger settlements or verdicts when the driver's behavior was reckless or where, as in your case, a fact like pregnancy makes the injuries even worse. You should call an experienced Virginia lawyer ASAP!
Seth Carroll is licensed to practice in Virginia only. The preceding is for information only and should not be construed as legal advice. Always call a lawyer directly for advice.
You should get copies of your documentation and hire an attorney to look after your best interests if you have not done so already and before you agree to sign any settlement documents. If you do have an attorney, make and appointment to discuss these concerns..
View my website & give me a call for a FREE consultation if you are a California resident 877-427-2752 or you can email me at Michael@Kingofpersonalinjurylaw.com www.KingofPersonalInjuryLaw.com I am licensed in California only and my answers on Avvo assume California law. Answers provided by me are for general information only. They are not legal advice. Answers must not be relied upon. Legal advice must be based on the interplay between specific exact facts and the law. This forum does not allow for the discussion of that interplay. My answer to any specific question would likely be different if that interplay were explored during an attorney-client relationship. I provide legal advice during the course of an attorney-client relationship only. The exchange of information through this forum does not establish such a relationship. That relationship is established only by personal and direct consultation with me followed by the execution of a written attorney-client agreement signed by each of us. The communications on this website are not privileged or confidential and I assume no duty to anyone by my participation on Avvo or because I have answered or commented on a question. All legal proceedings involve deadlines and time limiting statutes. So that legal rights are not lost for failure to timely take appropriate action and because I do not provide legal advice in answer to any question, if you are an interested party you should promptly and personally consult with an attorney for legal advice. Also, see Avvo's terms and conditions of use, specifically item 9, incorporated by this reference
If you even hope to get a reasonable settlement out of your personal injury matter, you need to retain counsel. The longer you wait, the more your claim will deteriorate. You can never put a hard and fast rule of thumb on settlements, but meds x 3 is not unreasonable in Nevada. I'm sure VA is not that far off of that analysis. But that assumes you have counsel.
There is no hard and fast rule for calculating settlement amounts that I know of, but some people seem to agree that 3 times the medical bills is the average. However, there are many other factors that can contribute to your settlement, including: the culpability of the parties, the reasonableness of the medical treatment, the long-term effects of the injuries, etc. I suggest you discuss your case with a local attorney for greater guidance.
It's fiction. Each case depends on its own unique factors.
Ben Glass is licensed in Virginia. He offers a number of free consumer book downloads at his site for information purposes only. You should consult an experienced, board certified attorney in your area. Obviously, no attorney client relationship is formed by participating in Avvo.
Here is why you haven't gotten a more factual answer to your question:
1) Out of pocket medicals are not the medical specials. Medical specials are total medical bills. If you have health insurance, your medical bills are much larger than your out of pocket and the health ins. co. undoubtedly has a lien.
2) The quality of the medical bills vary. A $60,000 hospital bill for a traumatic leg amputation is a "higher quality" medical bill than $60,000 for spinal pain injections.
3) The old 3X rule may have arisen in the past where the split was 1/3 for the medical bills, 1/3 for the lawyer and 1/3 for the client. But in recent times medical bills have gotten so inflated that there is always the question of whether a $10,000 medical bill is really a $10,000 bill or, in fact, a bill that will be paid off at a great discount.
4) A client's prior claim history, prior injuries, can often be relevant but are hard to describe or explain in a short answer forum like this.
5) Some claims of pain and suffering are more convincing than others; but this can't be addressed in this sort of Q and A forum.
6) I believe that in most cases--emphasize most--a lawyer, even after their fee--adds value to your case. This is particularly true if the lawyer gives you a discount off the standard fee of 1/3 or 35% or higher. (My firm of Reed & Mansfield which practices in Nevada and, to a limited extent in California offers a flat 25% fee if there is a police report that blames the other drive and not you.)