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Q: Personal Injury ( Answered,   2 Comments )
Subject: Personal Injury
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: sarahpatricia-ga
List Price: $2.00
Posted: 02 Aug 2006 07:23 PDT
Expires: 01 Sep 2006 07:23 PDT
Question ID: 751844
My husband broke his foot at work.  He works for a small package
delivery service and was delivering a computer.  He stepped out of his
truck and the curb was broken and there was a hole.  How much can you
win in a personal injury suit?
Subject: Re: Personal Injury
Answered By: johnny_phoenix-ga on 02 Aug 2006 13:49 PDT
Hello Sarah-Patricia, 

First things first in order to get compensation you need to decide who
you are going to take out an action against.

In order to succeed with an action, you would need to show that they
have caused the injury to your husband through negligence.

In this case, you refer to a broken curb and a hole and therefore we
can assume that you would target your case against the local

You would need to first of all establish that the hazard was
significant enough to be a danger and you would then have to show that
the authority should have been aware of the hazard within a reasonable
timescale and fixed it.

For example, lets say that the broken curb and the hole were caused
ten minutes before your husbands fall by a truck using a support
whilst unloading heavy equipment. It is unreasonable in those
circumstances to expect that the local authority could have known
about the hazard at that stage, let alone fix it.

However if the curb had been broken for weeks and nothing had been
done about it and it was a significant hazard, you could possibly
argue that the authority had not discharged their duty of care to the
public by having in place a regular system of inspection to identify
and repair risks and this would go a long way to supporting your
allegation that they were liable for your husbands injuries.

Now that the preamble is out of the way to avoid false hope, we can
turn to the question itself on the assumption that the target of your
action was found liable.

Establishing the damage caused to an individual will vary from country
to country or state to state but will nevertheless be based on 1. The
pain, suffering and loss of amenity that has been experienced by the
injury. 2. The length of time any symptoms remain until full recovery
or the medical evidence showing that the injury is permanent and 3.
Any loss incurred because of any permanent or temporary disability and
this will be affected by the rate of income of the injured party
multiplied by the amount of time that they are unable to work for as a
result of their injuries.

The first one of these is the most variable since the level of damages
awarded is usually uniform only in the state or country. For example
in the United Kingdom a forty year old man suffering a broken foot
that healed with no complications and no symptoms lasting more than
say eighteen months might secure a settlement of anywhere from
4500.00 to 7500.00. The gap is the arena that the lawyer would try
and secure settlement at the top end of and the insurance company
would try and settle at the bottom of and they would generally meet
somewhere in the middle simply by haggling.

In the US, compensation is notoriously higher, example, the lady that
burned her mouth on coffee was awarded $200,000.00 in compensation and
$2.7 million in punitive damages. Granted these were later
substantially reduced but still.

I hope that this has all been useful in supporting the answer which
quite simply has to be as straightforward as "if you have been
involved in an accident that wasn't your fault...etc" need to
seek the free advice of a local lawyer that is aware of the local
scales of damages for your area but there will not be a definite
amount just a range that the injury will fall between and this will
only be answered once your husband has a medical report confirming the
injury and ongoing symptoms.

I hope that this has been helpful and wish you the best of luck. 


Johnny Phoenix
Subject: Re: Personal Injury
From: nelson-ga on 02 Aug 2006 10:56 PDT
Nothing.  I guess he never heard of "look before you leap", huh?

Okay, maybe you can win something.  A jury is made up of 12 people
stupid enough not to be able to get out of jury duty, after all.

You should call a lawyer.  Those ambulance chasers often work on
contingency and will be happy to speak to you free of charge.
Subject: Re: Personal Injury
From: markvmd-ga on 02 Aug 2006 11:09 PDT
I would think the curb was municipal property. Aren't most US
cities/towns immune from such prosecution?

Hm, I suppose a clarification is needed-- where ya at?

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