Today's question is from a meat cutter, but the principles to value this case apply equally as well to any personal injury case. While workers' compensation cases are different the idea of what we do to prove up the damages won't change much. So join Attorney Lombardi today as he explains how you should think about how to value your case. 

Question: What should I expect for a ballpark settlement figure for a right shoulder rotator cuff work injury?

Question Detail: I am a meat cutter market manager. After surgery and seven months of therapy, my injury left me with 5 pound overhead strength limit. After returning to my job for 3 months, I have been classified as total disability by my doctor and my employer. Please comment if you can. Thank you!

Answer: Wow, you’ve given me a tough job. Really I don’t have enough information to understand your case and no lawyer can value your case with so little information, so let’s talk about what we do know and what we need to know. I'm guessing your have a workers' compensation case, but I don't know because you haven't said you do. You did have surgery and again I can guess it's to your shoulder, but I don't really know. And more importantly I don't know if you're right or left hand dominant or if you have other impairments that pre-existed the accidental injury. I don't like to guess because that leads to a bad result for my clients. So here is what I need to know before really answering your questions. 

There are two general areas to be evaluated: They are liability and damages neither area of which you have adequately described.

What kind of a case is this? Is this a workers’ compensation or a personal injury case?

If a pi case how did the accident happen and were you at fault?

  • We need to know more about your medical condition?
  • Did you have surgery? How well did you recover? How long was your recovery?
  • Do you require future medical care? If so what will it cost?
  • Did you suffer a wage loss? If so how much is the wage loss?
  • Did you suffer a reduction in your earning capacity? If so how is that measured?
  • Was there health insurance and is there subrogation?
  • How well have you recovered from the injuries?

If a wc case is it an accepted case of liability?

  • What is your weekly compensation rate? Is it correct? Are you married and how many dependents do you have?
  • What is your educational history?
  • What is your work history?
  • What is your age?
  • Do you have any special training?
  • What are your limitations assigned by the doctors?
  • What are the limitations you believe you have?

Based on the information provide I could not answer your question with any certainty. I would need to know more including reviewing all the medical reports. 

Steve Lombardi
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Iowa personal injury, workers' compensation, motorcycle, quadriplegic, paraplegic, brain injury, death
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