How much is my accident case worth?

May 20, 2024 | Legal Issues

For people involved in an accident case or any type, there is always the unknown of knowing what its value is

A few years ago I had a client who was involved in a car accident. He had already seen other lawyers to help him with his accident case but, for one reason or another, no lawyer took his case. One of his first questions to me during his consultation (and also once my Firm took his case) was: How much is my accident case worth? It is understandable that, for many persons involved in any type of accident, there is the doubt of what is the value of his/her case, as our client had.

Some clients have expectations which are very high and difficult to satisfy because, for instance, they read on the internet or through television commercials of “a lady who won five million dollars because someone spilled hot coffee on her” or, for instance, another case where a client remembers that his uncle “was given $72,000,000.00 for his accident in New York”.

These expectations, which are very high, are very difficult to satisfy when lawyers’ advertising, and also non-lawyer advertising, publish commercials which have been seen on television, billboards, etc., which advertise: “You have $10,000.00 for your lost income and to pay medical bills” or, “You can receive $25,000.00, $100,000.00 or more”, or “we obtained for our client $1,000,000.00.”

It is not right for the specific victim of an accident to hear and/or believe that those cases or statements apply to him/her since that type of advertising creates an unreasonable hope and an expectation that all cases are similar in nature when that may not be the victim’s specific case or situation.

Analysis to follow after an accident

The answer to my client, and the analysis I use for each of them after an accident case is as follows:

  1. A detailed study of the accident and its aftermath: Who was at fault, who was not at fault, evidence, photographs, medical records related to the accident, prior medical records, documents of evidence of lost income, among other documents, and
  2. After determining who was at fault for the accident, then,
  3. A detailed analysis of all the insurance policies which provide and/or could provide funds and/or monies and coverages for the accident for the client, and the capacity of the person or entity which was at fault for the accident to pay for damages caused, and
  4. Try as best as possible to provide numbers for each individual damage, present and future, sustained for my client due to the accident.

Factors that must be analyzed. Evidence collection

Then, to value my client’s accident case, the following factors need to be analyzed:

a. What are the medical bills which have accumulated and still are owed due to the accident?

All the medical bills must be obtained, gathered, analyzed in detail and added/summarized (ambulance, doctors, emergency room, anesthesiologists, chiropractic, specialists in pain control, etc.).

b. What are the future medical bills the client may have to pay for the accident?

The doctors and health care providers may, sometimes, provide estimates of future medical bills the client may incur (For instance, if the client will require surgery).

c. What are the income losses, lost of monies and/or funds which the client has had since the date of the accident and as a result of the accident?

This requires the analysis of pay stubs, U.S. federal income tax returns, analysis of the client’s W-2 forms and/or 1099 forms, dates and hours of lost work income, etc.

d. What would be a future estimate of income lost due to the accident?

For instance, a client who has had severe bone fractures in both legs but used to work as a construction worker or a roofer may not be able to do his job as before the accident (salaries, wages, or funds).

e. What are the client’s out of pocket expenses due to the accident?

For instance, monies spent to purchase pain medications, etc.

f. Was the person who caused the accident drunk?

There is something under Florida law called “punitive damages” which could apply to the client’s case.

g. Is the client married?

If so, there is a damage called: “loss of consortium” which may apply to the client’s case and which belongs to the client’s spouse. Even when that spouse was not involved directly in the accident (For instance, if the spouse was not in the vehicle when the accident occurred).

h. What has been the client’s “loss of enjoyment of life” due to the accident?

For instance, what physical activities the client no longer can perform or do (or maybe can but with difficulty) which the client used to do before the accident? For instance, play sports, go to the theater and sit to watch a play for hours, drive long distances without having pain from the accident, etc.. This is what some people call “pain and suffering”.

i. What type of physical damage has the client suffered?

For instance, broken bones, broken ligaments, herniations in the client’s spine, or other.

Some of the damage factors I mention can be added. For instance, if someone has a chiropractor’s bill for $1,000.00, and maybe a hospital bill for $21,000.00, the past medical bills sustained or accrued are called “economic damages” or “specials”.

What to do in case of an accident?

Some of the damages caused by accidents and personal injuries are difficult to value. Those damages are called under Florida law “non-economic damages”. Among them are: “loss of enjoyment of life” or “pain and suffering”. How can a victim’s pain be measured in dollars after an accident?

Or how can an accident victim’s nervousness and anguish felt after an accident if he or she has to submit himself or herself to a surgery be measured in dollars? Or, how can the pain an accident victim may have for the rest of his or her life due to the accident be measured in dollars? Calculating those types of damages creates a lot of controversy and litigation in Florida courts.

All of the above gets complicated because sometimes there may be what are called “subrogation rights” and different insurance coverages of motor vehicles.

Try to speak, after an accident, with a lawyer of your choice (directly and not with a paralegal) to obtain real and adequate advise of an estimate of the value of your accident, possibilities of winning of losing your case, what is positive or negative in your case, etc. Do not let advertising out there lie to you. Remember what your parents used to say: “Not all that shines is gold.”

If you have been the victim of an accident I will be completely at your disposition to take care of you, analyze your case, and provide you with a realistic analysis of the value of your claim and to process your case.

In accident case, you can call us at: (407) 649-1404 or contact us via e mail at: [email protected]

We are:  Attorney Alejandro R. Lopez, Law Office of Alejandro R. Lopez, P.A. 

4465 Edgewater Dr., Suite A – Orlando, Fla. 32804                                 


With more than 34 years of experience.