How Much Money is the Insurance Company Going to Give Me on My California Personal Injury Case???

No attorney, can tell you how much your California personal injury case is worth until you have completed all your medical care and your doctors have released you, and your attorney has all this information in front of him and her.  Then, and usually only then, will an experienced accident lawyer know what the "value range" is on your given case.  I am not telling you have a crystal ball on every single case either, but I can tell you that most insurance companies follow a very detailed formula in obtaining a settlement range or value on a given injury case.  For more details on what they use (computer) you can click here for more intriguing details.  If you are only interested in the formula they use, continue reading.

The "Davinci Code" Formula used by Most Insurance Companies in Obtaining Injury Case Settlement Value: 
Simply stated, every injury case value starts with the injuries themselves, but they have to be documented in a certain fashion in order for you or your lawyer to argue the damages to a claims adjuster or jury.  Here is the secret formula:

1.  All injuries must be documented by a medical ICD-9 Code; if you do not have this, it will make it harder to argue damages to a insurance claims adjuster.  Sure, you can argue off the medical chart notes, but these insurance companies are using sophisticated computer programs, and if your case goes to trial, they will argue saying the doctors did not diagnose you properly;

2.  All different modalities of medical care (this just means types of medical care like physical therapy, chiropractic, acupuncture, or the like) must be documented by CPT Code; same argument as in item one above;

3.  Your actual medical care is then judged and balanced on your intensity, frequency, and duration of all medical care attended;

4.  Any ER visits, ambulance, specialist visits (medical doctor, or doctor of osteopathy), surgeries, or pain management are giving "special credit" in terms of value.  Believe, if you get pain management (being poked with a needle) the value of your case can increase as long as you have no problem with causation of injury and it is supported in the medical findings.   This is really "devil in the detail" stuff.  If a jury gets to see "how big" the needle was that the pain doctor had to inject into you, the insurance company, for good reason, will want to increase your pain and suffering damages.

5. Your medical care, indicated above, then gets judged and balance with any other "specialized damages" you may have like: wage loss, mileage to and from doctor's visits, credit damages, and future medical care (but hang to this last one, in order to really get future medical care, you will, at least, need the following documented medical finding, and this finding is hard to get because it must be justified and warranted on many levels in your particular injury case);

6.  After completing your course and scope of medical therapy, and you are released from medical care to participate in her your own recovery, do your injuries justify a medical impairment to any particular body part or parts, and to what degree?  Aside from item 1, your actual injuries, this is by far the biggest value driver on your accident case in the state of California. However, not every injury case warrants an impairment rating and if one does, it must be done by a formula under the American Medical Association 5th Edition Guidelines.

For those of you who want even more details on the above 6 items, I put together this short video for you to see.  I apologize but I do go into a lot of detail in the video about the AMA 5th Edition Guidelines, and what is called "whole person impairment."  But remember, like with anything else in life, the more details you have, the better argument you can make:

I hope this video inspires you to understand the nature of what you are up against with insurance companies and your specific injury case value.  I truly believe going to an insurance company for a settlement offer, or even going before a jury in trial, if your injury case is armed with all the medical details, and duly supported by
all the medical findings in relation to the facts of your specific accident, you are doing everything in your power to get fair value on your injury case!  

I dedicate this webpage to all of those injury attorneys who have come before me, and to those who know that one of the secrets is the medical details that make a case work in order to obtain fair justice:  keep fighting the good fight for all your injured clients!