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Determining the Value of a Scar

Serious Maryland car accidents can result in a variety of injuries, some of which can leave permanent scarring. They can be caused by broken glass or impact with a part of the vehicle’s interior, or scars that are a result from surgery for injuries sustained during the accident. In other personal injury matters, scarring from a dog bite is certainly common, especially if you had to get stitches.

So, are scars worth any additional money in a personal injury claim? And, if so, how is the value determined?

As with any type of injury claim, the value can vary greatly depending on individual circumstances and how well the plaintiff recovered. It is not an exact science when computing personal injury claims, especially regarding non-economic damages like pain and suffering. Each insurance adjuster and their defense attorney will value a residual scar less than you as the claimant would. And, no scar is the same. The value of a scar on an 80-year-old man’s leg is going to be entirely different than a scar on the face of a 21-year-old model.

Different Types of Scars

To start, one of the facts that all parties look at is the type of scar that is left. There are several common types seen in personal injury claims. These include:

  • Atrophic Scars: Often depressed or flat against the skin, usually caused by tissue damage
  • Hypertrophic Scars: Raised or elevated, occur due to excessive tissue caused by a wound or infection
  • Keloid: Similar to hypertrophic, but far more pronounced and can be painful; may need surgery to treat
  • Contractures: Result from burns; can cause pain and aesthetic concerns

The type of scar makes a difference, especially if there is follow up treatment required, like with keloid scarring.

Factors About Scars

Even if you compare two identical scars, they can be extremely different depending on where the scar is located and who it is on. Some of the individual circumstances that can change the value of a scar are:

  • Age: The younger the claimant is, the higher the value in most cases
  • Gender and Marital Status: Whether it is fair or not, gender and marital status can come into play at times, where some juries might value a scar higher on a young female versus a young man, especially one who has not found a spouse
  • Location of the Scar: A scar that is across someone’s face has much greater value than one on the back of a thigh
  • How Permanent: Scars that can be easily removed by a plastic surgeon will have a decreased value as opposed to a large permanent one that there is no chance of removing

Retaining a Personal Injury Attorney

Because the value of a scar can differ so greatly, it is important to retain a skilled Maryland personal injury attorney right from the start. Establishing liability early on is important to the overall value of your claim, and you need a strong negotiator on your side. The Law Office of Robert R. Castro has experience in all types of personal injury claims, including serious permanent injuries. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation.