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Brandon M.
Brandon M., Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Attorney experienced in numerous areas of law.
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How do i calculate damages He has a scar on his arm for l

Customer Question

How do i calculate damages? He has a scar on his arm for life.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Brandon M. replied 5 years ago.
Hello there:

Thank you for entrusting me with your question. Someone injured as a result of another's negligence can recover the amount needed to compensate them for their injuries. This includes the quantifiable losses, such as property damage, medical bills, time lost from work, etc., but it also considers the less easily quantifiable damages of "pain and suffering"; this is a subjective measure and makes every case unique.

It is also impossible to give a firm number because a case is worth whatever a jury would return if it ended in court, and every jury is going to have a different answer to the question of what fair compensation is for an injury. There is no "right" answer. One jury presented with the facts could come up with one answer, and a different jury presented with the same facts could come up with an entirely different number.

Although there is no rule for how much someone's pain and suffering is worth, the guideline is that the pain and suffering portion is worth approximately 2.5 times the cost of the medical bills. So, for example, if the victim's only injury was a trip to the ER and that bill was $2,000, she could recover $5,000. If the victim later needed a surgery that cost $10,000, she could recover $25,000 in pain and suffering for that. Again, this is just a guideline.

An arm scar is usually not worth a whole lot even if it is permanent. I had a client once who's arm was cut open pretty badly and she was left with a scar approximately six inches long and 1/4 inch thick. Her medical bills were miraculously only around $5,000, but we settled for $35,000. The reason we got as much as we did was she wanted to model and the scar impaired her potential to pursue that interest.

It is ok to demand the other side to make the first offer. However, if you can't do that, consider the guidelines.

I understand that you may have follow-up questions. Let me know if further clarification is needed. Thank you.

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