Visitor Question

Nerve Damage and Shoulder Injury from T -bone Accident…

Submitted By: Renee (Staten Island, NY, USA)

I was in a car accident on 8-4-11. The driver of the other vehicle was found 100 percent at fault, they T-boned my car on the drivers side. I instantly had shoulder pain and numbness, and tingles in my left hand.

After MRI’s they found I had a tear in my shoulder which resulted in surgery, and a shaved rotator cuff. The numbness in my hand also did not go away.

They found nerve damage in the EMG test and carpel tunnel in my left hand, for which I needed surgery. I also have a pinched nerve in my neck, nerve damage in my lower back, and a bulge that hits my nerve and sends pain down my left leg.

The other driver’s bodily injury limits are $250,000- $500,000. Mine are $100,000 – $300,000. What do you think I could settle for? Thanks.

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.


Dear Renee,

Before considering a negotiated settlement amount you must be sure your injuries are either fully healed, or at least stabilized and healing through therapy or rest.

One of the most serious mistakes a victim can make is to “rush to judgement”. In New York State the Statute of Limitations, or “time period” in which a victim in a personal injury case has to either settle their personal injury claim or file a lawsuit is three (3) years.

Once you are sure of these matters you can begin the settlement process.

Although there are a couple of methods in determining settlement amounts, one of the most time-tested is to take your medical bills, referred to in the legal business as “Hard Costs”, and multiply them by 3x,4x,5x or more.

The purpose of multiplying medical bills by 3x or more is to include by reference the amount of out of pocket expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering you endured. Otherwise, having to settle on each amount would be almost impossible because of the subjective nature of the underlying costs of the accident.

Out of pocket expenses include items such as the cost of prescription and over the counter medications, crutches, slings and other necessary medical means. It also covers costs related to your treatment and therapy. Lost wages must be a total of all the work and compensation you lost while treating and recovering.

Pain and suffering are next. Calculating that amount is one of the primary reasons the use of multiples is employed in negotiated settlements.

If your injuries and resultant costs are substantial, and you feel uncomfortable negotiating a settlement by yourself, you might consider speaking with a personal injury attorney. The positive aspect of speaking with a personal injury attorney is the lack of payment necessary for a consultation. You might want to speak with several attorneys. Most will not charge any fee for an initial office consultation.

Most reputable attorneys will sit down with you and discuss your case. Once they have all the facts they can advise you by telling you a general amount of money they believe your case is worth. They should also be able to tell you if by retaining them the net amount to you after attorney’s fees will be sufficient enough to make retaining a personal injury attorney “worth your while”.

Learn more here: Side-Impact Collision Settlements

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 888-972-0892.

We wish you the best with your claim,


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