In a personal injury case, there are several factors that Ohio law allows you to consider when determining full, fair, and just compensation.
In this post, we’ll discuss these factors and how you can protect your rights.
Determining Full, Fair, & Just Compensation
The factors, which are summarized in our Ohio Jury Instructions, include the following:
“1) the nature, character and extent of your injuries that include the effect that your injuries had on your physical health;
2) your physical pain;
3) your physical impairments that include a partial or complete loss of function or use of your body whether temporary or permanent;
4) mental suffering or anxiety that includes mental distress, frustration, embarrassment or indignity caused by your injuries. Anxiety includes any worries that you have concerning your injury and pain including worries about future pain;
5) loss of enjoyment of life. This category includes activities that you enjoyed doing that were partially or fully reduced that once brought you satisfaction;
6) inability to perform usual activities. This category includes an inability to perform your usual work and house-related activities, caring for your children or pets, doing your ordinary functions like mowing your lawn or riding in your car;
8) loss of earnings;
9) hospital and medical expenses. This category includes all medical expenses that were reasonable and necessary charges from the hospitals, treating physicians, physiologists, physical therapists, occupational therapists and any other reasonable and necessary medical care and treatment that was a cause of the personal injury incident; and
10) permanent injury and expense.” Under this category your treating doctor must render an opinion, to a reasonable degree of medical probability or certainty that your injuries are permanent and were the direct and proximate result of the personal injury incident. In the event your treating physician renders an opinion that your injuries are permanent, you can recover all future medical expenses.
Gather the Necessary Documentation
In order to recover these damage factors, it is critical that you gather all of the necessary documentation. It is really important that you immediately take pictures of all of your injuries and always maintain a diary documenting all of your injuries, your restrictions, your limitations, and activities that you are having difficulty doing both at home and at work.
Also, take photographs of the scene of the incident that reflects the scene where the incident occurred. Take down all of the names, phone numbers and addresses of all of the eyewitnesses that saw what happened. Immediately report the incident to the police and immediately contact your insurance provider. Provide them with a thorough report of how the incident occurred and outline in detail all of the unsafe things that the negligent driver/person/company did that violated your safety.
Be Specific with Your Medical Providers
In order to document all of these damage factors, it is critical that you provide all of your treating doctors, specialists, and therapists with a thorough medical history. Going from top to bottom, list for your doctors all of your injuries and describe what it feels like inside your body. Use descriptive words to describe what the injuries feel like. For example, it is not enough to say, “I have neck pain.” Be more thorough in your explanation. For example, you might say it is “aching and radiating with a warm sensation,” as opposed to just neck pain. Tell them about the intensity of the pain. How long does the pain last? How intense is the pain? Does the pain come and go or is it constant? Describe the frequency and extent of the pain for each of your injuries.
Providing your doctors, physical therapists, occupational therapists, and other medical providers with a thorough history is extremely important. Insurance adjusters are not just going to take your word for it. The adjuster will consider the records from your doctors, specialists, or therapists. It is up to you to give a thorough history relating to your injuries and the extent and duration of the pain. To the outside observer, you may appear to be fine – which can leave the adjuster wondering if you are really injured. By providing your doctors, specialists, and therapists with a thorough medical history, they will help describe for the adjuster the extent of your pain and the nature your injuries.
We’re Here to Help You
Are you struggling with an injury in the state of Ohio? Our firm, based in Columbus, Ohio, is here to help you during this difficult time. Give us a call at 614.488.2270 or fill out this form.