How much you should settle a knee injury for depends on a few different factors, including:
- The type of injury
- The extent of treatment required
- The potential for future complications
The strength of the evidence in your case will also affect the available settlement amount. Getting legal advice about your injury may be the best way to understand the value of your claim.
Weighing the Evidence of Negligence That Caused Your Knee Injury
In many personal injury cases, such as car accidents that lead to knee injuries, the basis for the claim is negligence. This legal term refers to careless or reckless behavior that violates the duty of care one party owes another.
For example, motorists have a legal duty to drive safely and obey traffic rules for the safety of others around them on the road. When drivers run a red light, drive while intoxicated, or speed, they break more than traffic laws—they also violate their duty of care to others. If such negligent conduct led to your knee injury, you may have a legal claim against the negligent parties.
The weight of the evidence showing negligence can have substantial effects on the outcome of your knee injury settlement. For instance, if a driver was clearly negligent in causing the accident, settling your case for a fair amount may be more straightforward. However, if the other party disputes the claim, it can be more difficult to recover damages.
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Measuring the Severity of Your Knee Injury
Some knee injuries involve only soft tissue damage to the muscles surrounding the knee. These injuries are fairly minor and may heal with minimal medical intervention. However, other knee injuries involve torn muscles or ligaments that require surgery. These often require a lengthier recovery time and more invasive medical treatment to heal.
Cases involving more extensive knee injuries may result in higher settlements, especially if they are likely to cause additional or ongoing health problems in the future. You can assess the severity of an injury by:
- The pain and suffering it causes
- The disruption to your regular activities
- The need for extensive medical treatment
- The potential for future medical treatment
These factors all contribute to the amount of your potential settlement.
Understanding the Current and Future Treatment for Your Knee Injury
Medical expenses for knee injuries can be significant, depending on the type of injury involved. For example, a minor knee injury may require an x-ray, an MRI, and a few weeks of rest and rehabilitation. Meanwhile, a major knee injury could require surgical repairs, reconstruction, and even replacement, resulting in higher medical costs.
The nature of the knee injury can necessitate future medical treatment, as well. For instance, major knee surgery can lead to future surgical interventions if scar tissue develops. You could also be at a higher risk of re-injuring the knee or suffering other unwanted complications. The potential need for more medical treatment in the future can affect your knee injury settlement.
Evaluating the Impact of Your Knee Injury on Your Future
When considering how much you should settle a knee injury for, it’s vital to account for how the injury will impact your ability to perform various activities in the future.
For instance, if you have an office job, a knee injury may only affect your hobbies, such as playing basketball or running. On the other hand, an injury victim who works in a factory that often requires physical movement may experience difficulty carrying out work-related duties.
You also may be left with a permanent impairment that adversely affects your daily life. You could struggle to care for your children or other dependents, or even to maintain your household. As a result, you may have to hire assistance, such as housekeepers or caregivers. Such costs could entitle you to a higher settlement amount.
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Filing Your Case in Court Can Affect the Settlement
Under CC Art. 3492, with a few exceptions, victims must file their Louisiana personal injury cases in court within one year from the date the accident occurred. A court filing signals your intent to take the matter to trial, if necessary, which can impact the potential settlement you receive.
As a case moves closer to trial, the insurance company may be more generous in a settlement offer. On the other hand, allowing this deadline to pass could take away your leverage in negotiations. The sooner you begin seeking damages, the more time you will have to prepare your case.
Your injuries could make this process difficult to handle alone. Our firm has the resources to handle the case on your behalf.
Working Toward a Settlement in Your Knee Injury Case
Knowing how much you should settle a knee injury for is not always easy. With the help of our team at Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers, you can get answers to these and other essential questions about your case. We can examine your medical records and other evidence of your damages to determine how much compensation to seek from the liable party.
Call our offices at (337) 777-7777 for a free consultation about your legal rights after an accident.