Suing For Property Damage?
Posted On behalf of Pfeifer Morgan & Stesiak on Apr 24, 2012 in Advice
Often, when you or someone you know has been hurt by someone else (particularly in a car accident), there is significant damage to property in addition to the physical pain suffered.
While it may seem insignificant at first, due to the stress and pain (and often anger) that the accident caused, eventually you may realize that the financial strain of the property damage is significant. Under what circumstances should you sue for property damage at the same time as suing for personal injury?
Well, there are a few possibilities.
If the cost of the damage was more significant than your injuries, you may be barking up the wrong tree. Even though in most cases your personal injury lawyer will not charge a fee unless you collect, personal injury suits (or any civil suit) are expensive. A lawyer will not pursue one if your physical injuries did not incur significant costs, for two reasons: first, he or she requires a significant settlement to recuperate their costs (remember, they're not charging you), and also personal injury is their area of expertise. If your injuries are more-or-less taken care of by insurance, and you're just interested in recuperating damages to your car, you should consider small claims court.
If the main purpose of your suit is to recuperate costs from your injuries, then a personal injury lawyer may be able to help you with the property loss as well. The exact number which you get from a suit is determined by a wide variety of factors and is often eked out during settlement negotiations, and your lawyer can use property damage as a bargaining chip with the plaintiff's attorneys.