Injury Survivors and Money. You and #6.

Most Mainers don’t have a lot of money saved for the day a distracted driver injures them. But the medical bills pour in, and the paycheck is on hold, and the wrongdoer’s insurance company says “Tough-We don’t think you’re really hurt.”  A Justia article lists the six features that sociologist Nils Christie indicates folks consider before they say to a victim “OK-you deserve to be put back to baseline with  money.” The survivor who is worthy of a money judgment is: (1) weak compared to the offender; (2) going about his/her life doing nothing wrong; (3) not at fault; (4) a stranger to the wrongdoer; (5) the wrongdoer is big and bad; and (6) the injury survivor is sympathetic without threatening a strong countervailing interest of the juror’s community. For most Mainers injured in a car crash they hit all six targets. Your body is no match for the offender’s two ton car plowing into your car. You were stopped at a red light minding your own business. You never met this distracted driver before. The wrongdoer’s insurance company is experienced at denying injury claims. And what about # 6? What about you as a person? Are you a hard-working, family-oriented regular Mainer? Bringing your best self  into sharp focus– who you are and what you stand for is a big part of being a plaintiff in a Maine courtroom. Honesty counts, and showing that you worked hard to get back to baseline is a key part of your case. That’s why we ask clients so many questions about income and health history and what, exactly, has happened since the crash. Because jurors are going to want to know whether you sat back and waited for someone to help you, or whether you helped yourself by doing whatever you could to get better. That’s a hard reality if you’re so badly hurt that it takes all your effort just to face the day. But it’s what we have to do to help you win what you deserve. We have to deal with #6.