Compensation for ankle / foot sprain?

by Mike

It's been 5 months since a driver ran a stop sign and collided with my vehicle. I went to the hospital by ambulance for an injured right foot - no breaks. The injury was classified as a sprain. I was put on pain killers and muscle relaxers for several days.

I continued to have pain and discomfort. I saw foot specialist, and started slow with a compression sock. Two months into treatment he finally put me in a boot. It's my right foot, so driving is difficult. My occupation is law enforcement so now I am off work for 2 months.

The foot doctor states he is sure I tore some connecting tissue and recovery will be very slow, possibly year or more, and may never be 100 percent. I have returned to work, but still wear compression sock and still have discomfort. Some days better than others.

The only restrictions placed on me by my doctor are no climbing ladders, and no running, jogging or kicking in doors. I was an avid jogger prior to the accident. Currently my pain and discomfort is ever so slowly getting better. My medical bills to date are approx. $3000.

The at-fault driver's insurance company has already told me they will cover my wages for sick time that had to be used, as well as an amount for some lost wages. No discussion as of yet about general damages.

What multiplier am I likely looking at, since I still have issues with the foot and have no idea if it will ever be 100 percent? Any other tips for getting the right amount of compensation here? Thank you.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Compensation for ankle/foot sprain?":

Mike (Nebraska):

Your questions implies you have some familiarity with the manner in which personal injury claims proceed. If so, then you already know your injury was a "soft tissue" injury. For those who don't know what a soft tissue injury is, it can be defined as injuries to the soft tissue of your body.

Soft tissue injuries can include sprains to muscles, ligaments and tendons, relatively minor cuts and abrasions, minor burns, and the like. Soft tissue injuries are different than "hard injuries." Hard injuries can include fractures, deep gashes requiring many stitches, head trauma, and the like.

While your doctor speculated you have torn some "connecting tissue," that opinion, in an of itself, is not sufficient evidence to prove the injury. Without proof, your injury continues to be soft tissue, and no more.

Soft tissue injuries usually settle for between one and a half, to two, and in rare cases, three times medical bills. That multiplier’s purpose is to account for pain and suffering. From the facts you present, you will be fortunate if the insurance company agrees to pay you 2 times medicals. Starting at three times medicals isn't unreasonable. You can negotiate down from there.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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