We’ve all heard about million-dollar personal injury settlements and verdicts. And those cases can make for interesting headlines. Sometimes, a plaintiff who has been severely injured is forced to fight it out in the court system to obtain just compensation for his or her injuries. Add in some intriguing legal drama, and it’s not surprising that journalists think those cases are newsworthy.
It’s important to remember, though, that a big part of what makes million-dollar cases notable is that they make up only a small percentage of personal injury claims and result from a catastrophic life-altering injury such as death, paralysis, or loss of use of an organ or limb. The majority of personal injury cases do not result in seven-figure recoveries, and most never make it into the newspapers. But that doesn’t mean they are not important.
Accident victims who have sustained injuries “only” resulting in a few thousand dollars in medical bills often mistakenly conclude that they don’t have a valid legal case – or that their cases are not worth the trouble of pursuing. Frequently, a low-ball offer from the insurance company reinforces this thought. After all, why bother hiring an attorney if you only have a couple thousand dollars in damages, and the insurance company is ready to cut a check?
Insurance companies have an interest in settling claims for the lowest amount possible. That doesn’t necessarily mean that they are bad people, but they are financially motivated to settle for less than what might be the fair value of your claim. So, just because the insurance company says that your claim isn’t worth hiring an attorney – a low-ball offer from an insurance company does not necessarily mean that you do not have a legitimate case. In fact, sometimes those are the cases in which you need a lawyer the most.
Yes. At The Millar Law Firm, we pride ourselves on helping where we can, and providing you a detailed explanation if we cannot for some reason accept your case. Sure, we’ve won million-dollar cases, but we believe that every injured person has the right to be fully and fairly compensated for his or her injuries. While we cannot accept every case we are contacted about, we take pride in carefully evaluating the merits of each and every individual case and working hard to get all of our clients full and fair compensation for the injuries they have suffered, and we take cases of varying sizes, not just the million-dollar variety.
In some cases, factors which might not seem all that important at first – or which are not initially apparent – can have a dramatic impact on the true value of the claim. After an attorney fully investigates the facts and researches the laws relating to the situation, it may turn out that what originally appeared to be a small case ends up having a substantially greater value.
In most cases we accept, yes, you may recover more than your medical bills. Every case is different, and we handle each case based upon the individual needs of our client and the circumstances of the case. It is not at all uncommon for the harm suffered by an accident victim to go far beyond the costs of medical treatment. In some cases, plaintiffs have undergone severe injury and physical and mental trauma. Some plaintiffs have injuries that require treatment well into the future, or for the rest of their lives. Some injuries prevent the injured person from ever again participating in activities that were once a significant part of his or her life. Factors such as these, and many others, must all be considered in appraising the precise value of a personal injury case.
It is impossible to evaluate a personal injury claim based solely upon medical bills. Yet, this is quite often the unfair approach the insurance company will take. An experienced attorney will raise all of the relevant factors with the insurance company and, if necessary, bring these factors to the attention of a judge or jury. A good attorney will work to ensure that you are fully compensated – not just for the costs of your treatment, but for all of the harm caused by the accident and resulting injuries.
Because so many different factors must be weighed to accurately evaluate a personal injury claim, values vary tremendously. At least one study has shown that injury victims represented by a personal injury attorney tend to recover at least 3.5 times more than persons who do not hire an attorney.
At The Millar Law Firm, our objective is to make sure that all of our clients are fully compensated for all of the harm they have endured. We have represented Georgia personal injury plaintiffs in million-dollar cases, but we also regularly represent clients with relatively smaller claims. If you need legal representation for an injury you have suffered, even if your medical bills are relatively small, you can schedule a no-cost consultation.