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How do the Courts Calculate Damages?

Have you ever heard in the news about people getting large verdicts in lawsuits and wondered how someone decided on that number? In reality juries, lawyers, and the court put a lot of thought into how much to calculate damages. 

Recently Cueto Law helped win a 72.5 million dollar verdict against Cerro Flow, a copper smelting plant in East Saint Louis. For more information click here. 

The first thing that probably hits you is the size of the number, but it is actually more than just large.

We put in a lot of time and effort into calculating how much to ask for in damages.

What are Damages?

Damages are what lawyers call harm or injury inflicted on a person’s being, property, or life that was caused by a responsible party. 

If we look at the Cerro Flow case the responsible party was Cerro Flow. They released pollutants into the air, which caused cancer in 12 of our clients. That would be the damages.

Filing a lawsuit against a company or organization is saying they caused you harm or damages, and you are owed a certain amount of money to make up for that harm.

To read more about the different kinds of damages, click here.

How do you figure out how much money is owed?

A big factor in damages is that they caused financial stress and/or physical harm. However, the verdicts clients are awarded are not based on feelings of how bad the damage was. There is a lot of hard numbers and math involved. 

Let’s consider the Cerro Flow example again. How did the courts get to 72.2 million dollars? 

Cancer, in addition to being a disease that can devastate families, can also cause financial hardships. The money our clients will get from the verdict is meant to compensate them for any out-of-pocket costs. These include travel expenses for treatments they had to pay and lost income from being unable to work due to their diagnosis. 

Essentially any expense they had to endure as a direct result of their cancer, Cerro Flow was liable for since it was the corporation that caused the cancer. 

What if I’ve been harmed?

If you have been injured or harmed by an organization, keep all receipts, invoices, and estimates of related expenses or lost income.

Give them to your lawyer. They will help prove you are entitled to compensation.

Also remember, at Cueto Law, you do not have to pay for our services unless we win your case. Call us at 618-277-1554. 

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