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What Does Your Settlement Include?

April 4, 2014

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Clients often ask: "What does my settlement include?" Importantly, you are always entitled to know what part of your settlement you will actually receive, and what part will be paid to reimburse the costs of litigating your case. Should you have any questions about this or any other matter, you should contact your attorney.

The short answer can be broken down into a simple formula: Total Settlement = Damages – (Expenses + Attorney’s Fees).

Damages, or the total amount you recover from the wrongdoer's insurance company, consist of the economic and non-economic losses you incurred as a result of the accident. Economic damages typically include, but are not limited to, past and current medical treatment, future medical treatment, lost wages, and loss of future income.

On the other hand, non-economic damages compensate you for your intangible losses, and include, but are not limited to, pain and suffering, loss of services, loss of consortium, and loss of enjoyment of life. Both economic and non-economic damages make up your total damages.

Attorney’s fees are only taken out if there is a positive resolution to your case. In other words, a personal injury attorney only gets compensated if we win your case. In addition to attorney's fees, case expenses are repaid from your settlement. Examples of such expenses include your subrogated medical liens (the amount that has to be paid back to your medical provider for medical bills it paid in connection with your injury), expert witness expenses, deposition costs, postage, and court filing costs.

Remember, your case is your case, and if you have any questions regarding the "inner-workings" of an injury claim, you should contact your lawyer.

Authored by Attorney Jordan D. Lebovitz

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