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Injury Claims Q & A (Part 1)


Injury Claims Q&A

Q. How much compensation will I be entitled to?

A. This will depend on a number of factors, there is
usually no set payments for injury. Costs will be determined either in
negotiation with the defendant or their insurer or failing that, a
court. Costs to be considered can be many including medical costs,
therapy and rehabilitation costs, lost income due to the injury and
consequent inability to work, compensation for pain and suffering,
permanent disabilities or disfigurements, loss of social, educational
or training opportunities, damage to property and child care.

It will also depend on where liability lies, it could be 100% with the
defendant (the persons you are claiming against) or that they are
partially liable, e.g. 75% with the defendant and 25% with the
claimant (you).

Some companies or their loss adjusters may use a damages formula to
estimate your compensation or use it as a figure to begin
negotiation. Typically this might be to add up your 'special damages'
(medical bills) and multiply that by a factor say 1.5-3 or more,
depending on the severity of the injury and then add on loss of
income.

If you are dealing with a loss adjuster remember that they will likely
expect you to negotiate with them so don't be afraid to push for a
better offer. Remember the job of the loss adjuster is to reduce the
cost of settlement to his client (the defendant, hospital or doctor)
by as much as possible.

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Q. What is 'Tort'?

A. Injury claims are usually made under a body of law known
as Tort. Tort laws vary between jurisdictions and countries but
generally this is civil law, rather than criminal law and applies when
an injury has been made against a person, rather than the state. There
are a number of categories of torts, the most dominant being
negligence tort. A medical negligence case could come under negligence
tort law and the defendant would have to establish duty of care owed
to the defendant (claimant / patient) by the plaintiff (hospital /
medical practitioner), breach of that duty, that the breach of duty
caused an injury and that the injury caused actual damage.

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