How are damages assessed in a personal injury case?

how are damages assessed personal injury case


Question: How are damages assessed in a personal injury case?

The first head of damage to start with is the “pain and suffering” component which relates to the injury sustained by you and after your injury has stabilised whether you are left with any permanent impairment.

There may be more than one area of permanent impairment, ie., say left leg and left arm.

The lawyer sends the injured person to an appropriate specialist to have that permanent impairment assessed under the AMA 5. This gives the lawyer a percentage of whole person impairment. This percentage is then taken and referred to the schedule in the Civil Liabilities Act to locate an Injury Scale Value which then places a dollar figure on that ISV. This is just one head of damage.

The medical expert will also be asked to comment on the injured person’s capacity to work. If they cannot return to their pre-accident duties or any type of work, then there is a claim for both past and future loss of wages. If you can only work part time compared to full time, calculations are made, for both past and future loss of wages on the basis of full time employment less the part time work.

Other heads of damages may include the care provided by family or friends or paid care whilst you were recovering, but you must exceed 6 hours per week for 6 months to get over the threshold set out by the legislation.

If you still require care in the future, these can be claimed for the rest of you life. (An occupational therapist will generally prepare a report on this aspect in assessing your care needs.) Future medical treatment, medication, and equipment may be applicable as well and this can be included in your claim provided medical evidence supports such claim.

Any out of pocket expenses incurred by you for medication, travel expenses to medical treatment, etc., can also be claimed.


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