How Is Personal Injury Calculated?

How Is Personal Injury Calculated?

In New York, if you are harmed as a result of another person’s negligence, you can file a personal injury claim or lawsuit against that individual to recover compensation for damages. If your case is successful, you will receive monetary damages either as a settlement or award. 

If you are considering filing a claim for compensation, you may be wondering, “How much money do I ask for?” Calculating damages is one of the most important steps of any personal injury case. This article will discuss how to calculate some of the most common damages awarded in personal injury cases. 

If you have questions about how damages are calculated and what your personal injury claim could be worth, please don’t hesitate to contact our Manhattan personal injury lawyersCall (888) 888-8888 or fill in the contact form to schedule a free case evaluation with a member of our legal team at Cellino Law today. 

How Current Medical Expenses Are Calculated in a Manhattan Personal Injury Case

Recent statistics show that, for every person killed in a traffic accident in New York City, another 11 people are seriously harmed. Traffic accidents are just one of the many causes of injury that can leave you seeking medical treatment. 

After being injured in an accident, recovering compensation for your medical bills is likely one of your top concerns. How you calculate medical expenses for a personal injury case will depend on whether the losses are current or potential. 

The following are some current medical expenses you could pursue compensation for:

  • Ambulance rides
  • Emergency room visits
  • Hospitalization
  • Diagnostic tests and lab work
  • Surgeries
  • Doctor’s appointments
  • Medical equipment
  • Rehabilitation services

Your personal records can help in calculating the value of these damages. We recommend organizing and saving all your medical bills and receipts in a safe location. Your lawyer may request this paperwork during your consultation, so bringing it along could be helpful. 

Typically, calculating the value of these damages is not too complex for an experienced attorney. Your personal injury attorney can determine the worth of your current medical expenses by adding up the costs of your bills and potential long-term medical needs.

Calculating Long-Term Medical Costs in Manhattan Personal Injury Cases

Some accidents result in minor injuries, and victims are able to recover in a few weeks or months. Tragically, other injuries are more severe, leaving a person requiring lifelong medical care and assistance. Injuries that commonly require long-term care are traumatic brain injuries and spinal injuries that result in partial or full paralysis. 

Your personal injury attorney can consult medical and financial experts to calculate the cost of your future medical expenses. Factors considered include the type of injury you suffered, the severity of your injury, and the average treatment plan for such medical cases. 

How to Calculate Lost Wages in Manhattan Personal Injury Cases

An accident caused by someone else’s negligence can leave you with injuries that prevent you from being able to return to work for a period of time. Whether you only missed work for a few days or were out for weeks, you may have the right to be compensated for your lost income.

Since everyone is not paid according to the same standards, your personal injury lawyer can work with you to calculate your lost wages based on your:

  • Hourly wage: Your lost income will not be difficult to calculate if you receive an hourly wage. We can take the amount you are paid per hour and multiply it by the number of hours you missed from work due to the accident. 
  • Annual salary: If you are a salaried employee, we must divide your annual salary by the number of hours you work in a year (40 hours a week equals 2,080 hours a year). After calculating your hourly pay rate, we will multiply it by the number of hours you missed due to the accident. 
  • Self-employed: If you are self-employed, you may be able to use your previous year’s tax forms to prove your estimated lost income. Individuals who have not been self-employed long enough to have filed annual tax forms, on the other hand, could potentially use invoices, receipts, contracts, and other documentation to show the amount of money they could have earned if they were able to work.

A Manhattan Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help Calculate Lost Earning Potential

Accident victims who have suffered severe injuries may be unable to return to their former jobs. These individuals who are forced to change careers or retire can seek compensation for loss of earning potential. 

Your Manhattan personal injury attorney may take specific steps to calculate your loss of future earning potential. He or she might:

  • Consult a financial expert. Courts are inclined to reject lost earnings estimates that are purely speculative. Financial experts can use information about your income and market data to estimate your future earnings. 
  • Analyze your past wages. Calculations will typically start with base earnings such as salary, commissions, bonuses, and benefits. The base earnings will be used to predict how an individual’s income might have increased over time. 
  • Evaluate benefits. An employee’s benefits may include medical insurance, use of company vehicles, paid meals, vacation days, retirement plans, and more. A personal injury lawyer will work with financial experts to put a monetary value on lost benefits. 
  • Determine the loss period. Typically, the loss period will extend from the date you were injured and prevented from working until he or she can secure comparable employment. If your injuries prevent you from working or achieving the same level of earnings, the loss period will extend over your entire work life expectancy. 

What Are Manhattan Pain and Suffering Damages?

Manhattan personal injury accidents can leave you with both physical and mental repercussions. Pain and suffering damages are often a major part of personal injury cases. 

Physical pain

Physical pain and suffering include discomfort caused by your physical injuries. Not just your present physical pain but also your long-term pain and suffering may be considered in estimating your due emotional damages. 

Examples include:

  • Neck pain
  • Nerve damage
  • Back pain
  • Severe burns
  • Paralysis
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)

Mental pain

Psychological pain and suffering are the by-products of a physical injury. Mental pain and suffering may include:

  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety 
  • Fear
  • Diminished quality of life
  • Embarrassment
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Putting a Dollar Amount on Pain and Suffering Damages in Manhattan

Insurance companies, lawyers, and courts typically use one of two methods for calculating New York pain and suffering damages: the multiplier method or per diem.

The multiplier method

The multiplier method is the most common means used to calculate pain and suffering damages. 

First, economic damages are calculated. This includes medical bills, lost wages, loss of earning potential, and property damage. 

Next, the total amount of economic damages is multiplied by a number between 1.5 and 5. Typically, the more severe the injuries, the higher the multiplier number. 

Per diem

The per diem method of calculation assigns a dollar amount to each day the plaintiff suffers from his or her injury. For example, the jury may assign a per diem of $300 a day based on the severity of the victim’s injuries and how his or her life has been affected by the accident. 

This amount is paid from the date of injury until the date the person is healed physically and mentally or else has reached the point of Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI). 

A Manhattan Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help You Calculate Personal Injury Damages

Personal injury accidents are stressful enough without the burden of accurately calculating the cost of your damages. You should not be expected to handle this on your own. The role of a Manhattan personal injury attorney is to guide clients such as yourself through these complex legal matters. 

The experienced personal injury lawyers at Cellino Law know how to assess the value of our client’s cases accurately. Over the decades, we have helped clients recover over $2 billion in damages. 

Let us help you secure top compensation for your losses. We know that you have many personal injury law firms to choose from in Manhattan. But when you choose us, you will have access to experienced legal professionals who know how to handle personal injury cases the right way. 

Contact us 24/7 at (888) 888-8888. Don’t hesitate to schedule a free case consultation today. 



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  • This is to express our gratitude to you and your team in helping us and Stephanie navigate through the legal process following her car accident. We are very satisfied with the outcome and grateful for your hard work and attention to details. We fell confident that with this compensation, Stephanie will be able to move forward with her studies and her life with the ability to care for some of her health needs resulting from the injuries sustained following her car accident. Thank you very much and may God continue to bless your efforts.

    Jose & Rose

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  • Choosing the right attorney to represent you after an accident can make all the difference. This is no cliche. I recently experienced these words to live by first hand. After a tractor trailer rear ended me at high speed in 2017 I retained Allan Silverstein to handle my case. I quickly realized that bringing a lawsuit rapidly snowballs into a mountain of details that can make or break your results. Documents, case histories, doctor visits, bills, and lots of phone calls all need to be accurately kept track of if a successful outcome it to be attained. To complicate matters I reside in New York and the incident took place in New Jersey. Luckily, Allan was licensed in multiple states. I was fortunate to find Allan to handle this matter from the New York area. Armed with an accurate account of the facts Allan went to work on the difficult job of negotiating with the defending insurance company as well as my no fault carrier in order to obtain the best possible outcome for my set of circumstances. In a lawsuit communication is key and and events can be of a timely nature. Allan never failed to return my calls - usually the same day! He fought skillfully and respectfully to get me the best possible settlement. He is easy to deal with and a likeable down to earth guy. He always listened with compassion and respect to my issues. He guided me with objective understanding as well as a realistic analysis of the merits of my case. When we finally settled Allan got me a fair agreement beyond my expectations and negotiated with my doctors to make sure all my bills were paid. It was a great experience having Allan represent me. Quality work in any aspect of life is hard to find. Quality is what I got with Allan Silverstein. I highly recommend him if you find yourself in need of a personal injury attorney.


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  • I can only say great things about my attorney Allan Silverstein. He is professional, he calls back right away, he keeps me informed, and makes me feel comfortable as this entire ordeal is stressful. I have total confidence in his ability to handle whatever comes his way. He is no nonsense and very good at his job. Thank you Allan... he is a true asset to the team!

    Mrs Steward