Basic Personal Injury Settlement Breakdown: How Much Goes in My Pocket?
When you settle a personal injury claim, you’ll naturally want to know how much of the settlement will go into your pocket. Because personal injury settlements are based on the unique factors in the case, you might receive more or less than a person with similar circumstances. Therefore, always discuss your case with an experienced Fort Worth personal injury lawyer instead of assuming how much your case is worth.
With that said, we can use common elements of a personal injury settlement to illustrate how a personal injury settlement breakdown works. It is also helpful to discuss the factors that impact how much your case is worth before exploring a personal injury settlement breakdown. Knowing this information helps you understand how we arrive at a value for your personal injury claim.
Factors That Impact Personal Injury Settlements in Fort Worth, TX
Some factors in your case will likely increase the value of your damages. However, other factors could lower how much you put in your pocket from a settlement.
Examples of factors that impact a personal injury settlement include, but are not limited to:
- The type of injuries you sustain and the treatments required to care for those injuries
- Whether you sustain a permanent disability or impairment that could result in future damages
- Your appearance before and after the injury (i.e., level of scarring and disfigurement)
- Whether you could be partially at fault for causing your injury or accident (i.e., contributory fault)
- The willingness of the parties to negotiate a personal injury settlement in good faith
- The strength of your evidence proving the other party caused your injury or accident
- How much insurance coverage is available for your claim
- Whether you can return to work or perform any activities to earn an income
- The parties involved in your personal injury case
Experienced Fort Worth personal injury attorneys work to maximize the factors that increase how much your case is worth. At the same time, they defend you against allegations of fault and work to minimize the impact of negative elements on your case.
What Damages Can I Receive for a Personal Injury Settlement in Texas?
The damages you sustain are a major factor used to determine the amount you receive for a personal injury settlement. Damages for a personal injury case include economic and non-economic damages. These damages compensate you for losses and harm caused by the accident or injury.
Examples of damages in a personal injury case include:
- Personal care and help with household chores
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Medical bills and expenses
- Loss of income, wages, and earning capacity
- Rehabilitation therapy
- Physical pain and suffering
- Impairments, disabilities, scarring, and disfigurement
- Diminished quality of life and loss of enjoyment of life
- Emotional distress and mental anguish
Before you receive any money for your claim, you must prove that the other party caused your injury. Your attorneys will gather evidence and build a case proving causation, fault, and liability. In some cases involving extreme conduct from the at-fault party, punitive damages might be available as well.
What Happens After I Sign a Personal Injury Settlement Agreement?
A final settlement resolves your case. Generally, the other party does not admit fault, but they agree to pay you a sum of money for your claim. In return, you agree to release all parties from all further liability.
After you sign a settlement agreement, the insurance company forwards a settlement check to your lawyer. Your attorney deposits the check into a trust account until it clears. When the check clears, the lawyer can disburse funds.
Deductions included in a basic personal injury settlement include:
Most Fort Worth personal injury lawyers take cases on a contingency fee basis. Instead of charging you when you hire the law firm, you agree to pay a percentage of the amount recovered for your case to the attorney for their legal services.
The percentage can increase if your case does not settle, and the attorney must file a lawsuit and proceed to court. However, most personal injury cases are settled without going to court.
A standard percentage for a contingency fee is 33 percent. However, the complexity of the case, the type of case, the attorneys’ qualifications, and other factors can impact the contingency fee charged.
Costs and Expenses of the Case
There are several costs incurred when pursuing a personal injury case in Texas. Generally, your lawyer pays these costs as they are incurred. When you settle the case, the costs are deducted from the personal injury settlement.
Examples of costs and expenses for a personal injury claim include, but are not limited to:
- Postage and copy fees
- Fees to obtain accident reports, medical records, and other documents
- Mileage and travel expense
- Cost of hiring expert witnesses
- Deposition and discovery costs
- Court filing fees
- Investigation costs
- Costs to prepare a case for trial
When you hire a Fort Worth personal injury lawyer, ensure you understand who is responsible for paying the costs and expenses if the lawyer does not win your case.
Medical Liens and Subrogation Claims
If a doctor or hospital has outstanding bills or medical liens, those must be paid from the settlement proceeds. Likewise, if your health insurance company paid medical bills related to your case, they may have to be reimbursed for those bills if they have subrogation rights.
Experienced personal injury attorneys attempt to negotiate liens and payments to increase the money that goes into your pocket. However, the providers and companies are not required to negotiate a lower amount.
Check With a Fort Worth Lawyer Before You Accept a Settlement Offer
Once you sign a settlement agreement, your case is over. You cannot demand more money because you gave up the right to pursue additional claims. Therefore, take advantage of a free consultation with a Fort Worth injury lawyer to discuss your case before you agree to a settlement offer.
Contact the Fort Worth Personal Injury Lawyers at Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers for Help Today
For more information, please contact an experienced Personal Injury lawyer at Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers to schedule a free initial consultation today. We have convenient locations in Bedford and Fort Worth, Texas.