Online Auto Accident Injury Calculators are Worthless and Fraudulent
Recently I have seen numerous websites that offer the ability to estimate the value of a client’s personal injury claim during the first consultation with limited information concerning treatment value or the full extent of the injuries sustained. I have long been aware that some of my colleagues offer to be able to do the same for clients during the first meeting.
The idea that an attorney, during the initial consultation with a client and with limited information about injuries and treatment, can accurately predict a settlement value or jury verdict is preposterous. I have practiced personal injury law since 2005. There are many factors that come into play when determining the value of a personal injury claim. Personal injury claims are just that, they are personal.
The only appropriate time to assign a value to a client’s personal injury claim is after the attorney has acquired and read all medical records and bills as well as documentation of lost wages, incidental and consequential damages, and other, softer, more human factors have been evaluated. Many times, I have managed claims that, on the medical bills alone, would have been valued quite low, only to have the conduct of the Defendant at the scene of the collision increase the value of the claim many times. When Defendants behave badly, jurors pay attention.
I would recommend that, any client who would like to be certain he or she will obtain the highest possible value for a personal injury claim, put their faith, not in an attorney’s ability to speculate, but in the process that an experienced personal injury attorney employs. I tell my clients that working with me will feel a lot like having an attorney.