Visitor Question

Compensation for head trauma?

Submitted By: Anonymous (Cleveland, Tennessee)

My daughter had a car accident 1 month ago. It was 100% the other driver’s fault. She was going back to college to prepare for her final exams when the accident happened. Her car was a total loss and she suffered a concussion. This resulted in her inability to present her final exams due to strong headaches, nausea, sensitivity to computer light, lack of sleep, lack of concentration, and her short term memory was seriously affected.

This situation is causing a lot of stress and anxiety because she has not been able to finish her semester, has fear to drive again, has difficulties with transportation for her summer job, and still has headaches and sensitivity to light. Also, her ability to retain new information to be able to study for her exams hasn’t improved that much.

Even thought the other party’s insurance company paid 100% of the value of the car and will cover the medical bills, we don’t know what is fair to compensate all her pain and suffering. Any suggestions? Thank you.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Anonymous,

Pain and suffering refers not only to physical pain resulting from an accident, but also to emotional and psychological injuries, such as fear, insomnia, grief, worry, inconvenience, and even the loss of the enjoyment of life.

In your daughter’s case, the concussion resulted in strong headaches, nausea, sensitivity to computer light, lack of sleep, lack of concentration, and short term memory loss – all of which fall under the umbrella of “pain and suffering“.

A concussion is an injury to the soft tissue of the brain. When a person sustains a concussion, the impact jolts the brain, causing it to move around in the skull. Traumatic brain injuries, including concussions, can cause bruising, damage to blood vessels, and injury to nerves.

While today many insurance companies rely on sophisticated proprietary software to determine settlement offers, victims of personal injury claims are relegated to relying on much less sophisticated methods. For victims, there is no algorithm, table or other tangible method to determine the amount of compensation a victim should demand from an insurance company.

A traditional, yet unsophisticated method for estimating a reasonable amount to demand from the insurance company for a settlement is the Multiple Method. This method takes the amount of actual damages, also called “Specials,” and multiplies them by a factor from 1-5x, sometimes more. The result of the multiple represents a starting amount in settlement negotiations.

Actual damages can include your daughter’s medical bills, out-of-pocket expenses (for medications, costs of travel to treatment, bandages, etc.) and lost wages (if applicable).

Because of the continued nature of your daughter’s head injury, and the resulting affect it’s had on her schooling and ability to function, it’s in her best interest to speak with a personal injury attorney in your area. There appears to be too much at stake to try to handle the case yourself.

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

Best of luck,

Published: October 19, 2017

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