Basic El Paso Personal Injury Settlement Breakdown: How Much Goes in My Pocket?
David Muñoz | May 8, 2023 | Personal Injury
Personal injury cases are about getting justice. That means holding negligent people responsible. You can’t go back in time, but you can get compensation for your expenses and the trauma that has unfairly been thrown upon you.
As a result, personal injury cases are about getting fair compensation. Most of our clients wonder how much to ask for in a personal injury settlement and the value of their case. This is completely normal. However, many clients don’t realize that just because you settle doesn’t mean all of it will end up in your pocket.
What Compensation Makes Up a Personal Injury Settlement?
In El Paso, TX, several types of damages make up a personal injury settlement. This includes economic damages, non-economic damages, and sometimes punitive damages.
Economic damages are your financial losses like:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Property damage
- Out-of-pocket expenses
Non-economic damages are payment for emotional and psychological losses, like:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Punitive damages are reserved for cases where the defendant engaged with gross negligence, malice, or fraud.
Expenses Deducted From Your Personal Injury Settlement
Once you reach an out-of-court settlement or a jury award after trial, certain expenses may be deducted directly from the award. This happens before your lawyer transfers the remainder to you. In many ways, this is easier than receiving the money only to turn around and pay several bills.
Attorney’s Fees and Case Costs
Your attorney’s fees and certain case costs are taken directly from the settlement.
Attorney’s fees in Texas are usually based on a contingency fee between 25% – 40% of your final settlement. The exact percentage will vary depending on whether your case settles pretrial or goes to trial. That’s because it is usually more work for a lawyer to go to trial. You’ll agree on an amount with your lawyer before representation.
Your lawyer will also take certain case costs from your settlement. This could include costs of copying and requesting records, hiring expert witnesses, and court filing fees. Again, you should have a conversation with your lawyer at the beginning of the case to understand what you will and will not pay for at the end of the case.
Many of our clients have medical liens attached to their personal injury cases. A medical lien is when a healthcare provider files a request for compensation for their services. Instead of issuing you a bill, the money is taken directly from your settlement if you win the case.
Medical liens are paid out before you get the settlement. This can be a good thing because your lawyer has the chance to negotiate the amount. As a result, you may end up paying less than the original lien.
How Are Personal Injury Settlements Paid Out in Texas?
In Texas, you can usually choose to receive the remainder of your settlement in a lump sum or increments. Increments are helpful if you receive a large settlement and want the security of payments divided over time. A lump sum is usually preferred by people who need to pay bills immediately.
The settlement funds are deposited in your lawyer’s escrow account, where it stays until all of the necessary deductions are made. After the lawyer has paid liens, court costs, and taken attorney’s fees, the remainder is distributed to the client. This whole process can take a month, or several months, depending on the number of liens and whether or not the lawyer is negotiating for a reduction.
Contact the San Diego Personal Injury Law Firm of Mission Personal Injury Lawyers Today To Get More Information
Mission Personal Injury Lawyers
2515 Camino del Rio S Suite 350, San Diego, CA 92108
We also serve the state of Texas. Contact our personal injury law office in El Paso for legal assistance today.