When another party causes you harm or injury, you can pursue damages by filing a personal injury claim. Damages are the relief the court grants to compensate victims for their pain, suffering, and financial losses. Your damages determine how much your personal injury case is worth in McAllen, TX.
An experienced McAllen injury attorney can help you understand what your case is worth.
What Factors Impact the Value of My Personal Injury Case in McAllen, TX?
Many factors determine how much a personal injury case is worth, including:
- Whether you have some fault for causing your injury
- The types of injuries you incur because of the other party’s conduct
- The medical treatments you were required to receive for your injuries
- Whether your injuries cause permanent disabilities or impairments
- The length of your recovery period
- The level of scarring and disfigurement caused by your injuries
- The parties involved in your case
- The evidence you have proving negligence and liability
- The availability and limits of insurance coverage
- Whether you can return to work or perform any activities to earn income
Some of these factors increase the amount of your damages. For example, catastrophic injuries and permanent impairments usually increase how much a personal injury case is worth. On the other hand, being partially at fault for the cause of your injuries can reduce the amount of your claim.
Comparative Fault and a McAllen Personal Injury Case
One of the factors we must consider is whether you are partially to blame for causing your injuries. Texas has a modified comparative fault law. If you are more than 50% at fault for causing your injuries, the law prohibits you from receiving compensation for your damages.
If your level of fault is less than 51%, you can receive some compensation for your injuries. However, your compensation is reduced by your level of fault.
Suppose the jurors determine you are 40% to blame for causing your injury. The court reduces your compensation so that you only receive 60% of the amount of your damages.
Insurance companies use comparative fault to undervalue damages. A skilled McAllen personal injury lawyer can fight allegations of comparative fault to protect your right to a fair settlement amount.
Damages for a Personal Injury Claim in McAllen, TX
The value of your damages determines how much your personal injury claim is worth. Texas personal injury laws provide for three types of damages – economic, non-economic, and punitive damages.
Economic Damages in a McAllen Personal Injury Case
Economic damages reimburse you for your financial losses and expenses.
Economic damages you could receive for a personal injury case include:
- Medical bills and expenses
- Occupational, physical, and rehabilitative therapies
- Property damage
- Nursing and/or personal care
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Lost wages and benefits
- Assistance with household chores
If you sustain permanent impairments or disabilities, you could also receive compensation for future damages. These damages could include ongoing medical treatment and care and/or long-term nursing/personal care. Future damages also include loss of future wages and a reduction in future earning capacity.
A skilled personal injury lawyer will work with leading experts to determine future economic damages. These experts may include financial professionals, medical specialists, and vocational experts as necessary.
Non-Economic Damages in a McAllen Personal Injury Case
Non-economic damages represent the suffering, pain, and distress you experience from the accident, your injuries, medical treatments, and recovery.
Non-economic damages in a personal injury case include:
- Impairments and disabilities
- Emotional distress
- Diminished quality of life
- Physical discomfort
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Non-economic damages are subjective because everyone’s experience is different. Therefore, it is difficult to place a value on pain and suffering damages.
Punitive Damages in a McAllen Personal Injury Case
Punitive damages are only awarded in a small number of personal injury lawsuits. The damages are not intended to compensate a victim for their losses. Instead, the damages are to punish the party who caused your injuries for their actions.
To award punitive damages, a jury must find that the at-fault party acted with gross negligence, malice, or fraud. As the victim, you have the burden of proving the requirements to justify punitive damages.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for Filing a Personal Injury Case in Texas?
The statute of limitations sets a deadline for filing a lawsuit. The court can dismiss a lawsuit filed after the statute of limitations expires.
Whether you are injured in a slip and fall or a car accident, most personal injury claims in Texas have a two-year statute of limitations. However, exceptions could change the time you have to file a lawsuit. Therefore, seeking prompt legal advice is the best way to avoid losing your right to file a lawsuit.
What You Can Do to Help Increase Your Chance of Receiving Fair Compensation
What you do after an accident or personal injury can significantly impact the outcome of your case.
Keep the following in mind after an injury or accident:
- Report the accident or injury immediately to the appropriate parties.
- Never admit fault or apologize for the accident. Your statements could be used to allege comparative fault.
- Seek immediate medical treatment for injuries. Delays in medical care could raise questions about the cause of your injuries.
- Avoid speaking with the insurance company until you consult an attorney about your case.
- Follow your doctor’s treatment plan.
- Document your damages and expenses.
- Seek legal advice from an experienced McAllen personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
Working with an attorney helps level the field with an insurance company. The insurance company has unlimited resources to fight your claim. When you hire a law firm to handle your case, you benefit from the firm’s resources and expertise.
Schedule a Free Consultation With Our McAllen Personal Injury Lawyer
Our McAllen personal injury attorney analyzes all factors involved in your case to develop a strategy to get the compensation you need. Contact our attorneys at The Law Office of Lino H. Ochoa. Call us at (956) 436-5405 to schedule a free case evaluation with a personal injury attorney. We are here to help you when you need trusted legal counsel regarding a personal injury claim.