Mouth Injured by Piece of Plastic in a Box of Cookies...
(Orange, TX, USA)
I was eating out of a package of animal cookies we had bought that day from the store. I put what I thought was a piece of cookie in my mouth and felt a jab in the roof of my mouth. It was very painful and there was blood. I pulled out the piece of unknown hard object, sucked off the icing and saw it was a sharp piece of broken plastic.
Kellogg wants me to see the doctor and say how much I want for my injuries, pain and suffering. For the past 2 days I've had pain eating. I had a friend take a picture of the wound. It is bruised and there is a hole where it jabbed the roof of my mouth. I'm not sure what to ask for, could you suggest something?
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ANSWER for "Mouth Injured by Piece of Plastic in a Box of Cookies...":
June (Orange, TX, USA):
Before we suggest a negotiated settlement amount you must be completely sure the injury to your mouth is fully healed. You must be sure the wound has not led to any other dental or medical complications.
Once you are absolutely sure your wound is a singular one you can begin your settlement negotiation. Although a relatively crude method of determining personal injury settlement amounts is multiplying your medical bills by 3x, doing so may be the most efficient way to compute the amount.
So if your dental and/or medical bills total $500 dollars, it would be entirely reasonable to request a settlement of $1,500 dollars. You can also request 4x "Hard Costs" as medical and dental injuries are often referred to. At 4x your settlement demand should be $2,000 dollars.
Unfortunately you are at the mercy of the insurance company. They know if you are not satisfied with their offer the chances of your suing them is minimal. They know your injury and resultant medical/dental bills are of such a small amount as to cause an attorney not to accept your case.
You can always sue the insurance company in Small Claims Court, but doing so over a relatively minor amount might not be time and cost efficient for you. Try your best to not settle for less than $1,500 (if your total bills are $500). Otherwise keep the 3-4x rule in mind.
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,
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