Five Key Factors That Affect the Value of Your Personal Injury Case

It’s more complicated than the TV Lawyers let on, and if your lawyer doesn’t know that, it’s time to find another lawyer.

You see the TV lawyers all the time talking about big settlements they’ve achieved.  But what they never say on those ads – and always leave for the “fine print” – is that they can’t guarantee such results and every case is different.  So, if you’ve been injured, you still have to ask: “How much is my case worth?” In truth, the value of your personal injury settlement depends on various factors, and understanding these factors can help you navigate the legal process more effectively. In this blog post, we’ll explore five key factors that significantly influence the value of your personal injury settlement.



  1. Severity of Injuries:

The severity of your injuries is a primary factor in the value of your case. More severe injuries often result in higher compensation due to increased medical expenses, prolonged treatment, and potential long-term impacts on your quality of life. For instance, a traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury may lead to extensive medical bills, ongoing rehabilitation costs, and loss of earning capacity, thereby warranting a higher settlement amount compared to minor injuries like bruises or sprains.

  1. Extent of Liability:

Liability plays a crucial role in personal injury cases. If the other party’s negligence or wrongful actions clearly caused your injuries, they will likely bear the responsibility for compensating you. However, if there’s shared fault or contributory negligence on your part – or even the possibility of that sort of outcome – your settlement amount may be reduced proportionally. Establishing liability requires thorough investigation, evidence gathering, and legal expertise to build a strong case and maximize your compensation.  My firm makes it a point to work-up a case properly, obtaining the full accident report, searching for surveillance footage, reaching out to witnesses, and gathering images of the cars involved and scene.

  1. Economic Damages:

Economic damages refer to the tangible financial losses incurred as a result of the injury. This includes medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and any other out-of-pocket costs directly attributable to the accident. Calculating economic damages involves compiling medical bills, invoices, pay stubs, and other relevant documents to substantiate your financial losses. The higher your economic damages, the greater your potential settlement amount, provided they are well-documented and justified.

  1. Non-Economic Damages:

In addition to economic damages, you may be entitled to non-economic damages, which compensate for intangible losses such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, and mental anguish. Unlike economic damages, which have a clear monetary value, assessing non-economic damages is subjective and often involves negotiation between the parties or determination by a jury. Factors such as the nature and extent of your injuries, the impact on your daily activities, and the duration of recovery influence the amount awarded for non-economic damages.  Another Non-Economic factor that is sometimes involved in cases is punitive damages – damages designed to punish the defendant.  These are most often at play in cases involving extreme conduct by the defendant, such as driving under the influence (DUI).

  1. Insurance Coverage:

The insurance coverage available to both parties can significantly impact the settlement negotiations. If the at-fault party has adequate liability insurance with high policy limits, it increases the likelihood of securing a substantial settlement. Conversely, if the responsible party is underinsured or uninsured, it may pose challenges in recovering full compensation for your damages. In such cases, exploring other avenues for compensation, such as your own insurance coverage or pursuing a lawsuit against additional liable parties, may be necessary to achieve a fair outcome.

  1. The Right Lawyer

Yes, I said five factors, but there’s one more that can have a large impact on the value of your case – hiring the right lawyer.  Insurance adjusters who value cases will take into consideration whether you are represented by a lawyer and, if so, the type of lawyer you have hired.  Studies have shown that claimants who are represented get better outcomes than those who represent themselves.  What’s more, insurance adjusters know what lawyers are willing to file lawsuits and litigate cases and which ones will take whatever number they’re offered.  They will value your case accordingly.


The TV lawyers who like to throw numbers around aren’t giving you the whole story. Navigating the complexities of a personal injury claim requires a thorough understanding of the factors that influence the value of your settlement. By considering the severity of injuries, extent of liability, economic and non-economic damages, and insurance coverage, you can better assess the potential outcome of your case and work towards securing the compensation you deserve. Consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney can provide important guidance and advocacy throughout the legal process, ensuring your rights are protected and maximizing your chances of a favorable outcome.

Jay Anthony is a former state supreme court law clerk with extensive experience in civil litigation, including personal injury.  He has handled a variety of cases including DUI accidents, dog bite claims, wrongful death claims, and product defect actions.  Click here to learn more about Jay and contact the office at 864.301.8141 or the Contact page to request a consultation.