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The issues on which we primarily focused dealt with the "reasonable person" standard and the "duty" the defendant owed to the plaintiff at the time the injury occurred. Prior to proceeding in a "negligence" lawsuit, it is necessary that the plaintiff establish both of these elements.
However, when pursuing either Lawsuit Funding or lawsuit loans, it is absolutely essential that damages be clearly established. In this particular article, we will discuss elements required to establish damages, as well as additional features that will be required when pursuing pre-settlement loans.
It is quite interesting to observe how frequently those who submit applications in an effort to obtain either a lawsuit loan or lawsuit funding fail to clearly identify the damages on which that claim are predicated. Unfortunately, the plaintiff has failed to understand one of the most critical elements in attaining litigation funding when they fail to identify those damages. If there are no identifiable damages, there will be no lawsuit settlement loan. Therefore, in addition to establishing that the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty and that the defendant failed to act in a manner consistent with that required by "reasonable person," the plaintiff has no claim and will be unable to obtain Pre Settlement Loans unless they can clearly establish the fact that they sustained damages as a result of defendant's actions.
Now that we've identified the fact that damages must be clearly established, what are they and how do we determine the resultant economic loss? Damages are protean in nature (i.e., they come in virtually every imaginable manifestation). Some of the more common damages one counters in civil lawsuits are injuries sustained as result of a motor vehicle collision, damages sustained as a result of medical malpractice, wrongful termination of employment, and breach of contract.
What are the damages the plaintiff may plead when pursuing civil litigation? A few examples of the damages that may be pled are medical expenses, vehicle repair, loss of consortium, loss of opportunity, loss of income, and loss of enjoyment of habitability. The plaintiff's duty in establishing damages will be to demonstrate the approximate economic loss resulting from defendant's actions.
Let's examine the issue of medical expenses a little more closely. A few the issues that may be considered are fees related to emergency medical personnel who may have been called to the scene of an accident. In addition to those expenses, there may be those expenses related to having to have an ambulance transport the plaintiff from the scene. If the plaintiff is taken by ambulance to an emergency room, in addition to the emergency room fees, there will be fees related to emergency room physicians. If the plaintiff is admitted to a hospital, their will naturally be fees associated with that hospital-stay. If the patient is not admitted to the hospital, but taken to an outpatient facility, there will be fees for those outpatient facility services. It is important to realize that if surgery is required, the plaintiff will have not only fees related to the surgery, but also fees related to the surgical equipment, anesthesiology, post-op rehab, etc. All of these expenses must be carefully identified and cataloged if the plaintiff wishes to recover for damages related to those expenses.
For those plaintiffs who seek pre-settlement loans, it is essential that they clearly establish damages sustained. All damages sustained should be carefully considered. Furthermore, it will be essential for the plaintiff to carefully calculate the value of each one of those damages. It will be necessary for the plaintiff to translate the damages sustained into an economic loss that either the Court or jury may appreciate. Remember, if the plaintiff fails to identify damages prior to settling his/her claim, the plaintiff will be forever barred from being able to receive compensation for those damages.
Once the claim is settled, the plaintiff will be required, at least in most cases, to sign a "hold-harmless" clause. This agreement will absolve the defendant from all future damages. The Settlement Loans advanced will not be based merely on the perceived value of the claim filed against the defendant. The plaintiff's ability to obtain either a lawsuit loan or lawsuit funding will be reliant on the funding-entity's perceived value of the damages established. It is important to keep in mind, that the principal factor in making such a determination will be the damages both claimed and clearly-established.