The best way for me to talk about how much an injured, broken, or shattered knee or torn meniscus may be worth in a Florida personal injury case is to give examples of past settlements.
This article applies to the personal injury portion of your claim if you are hurt while working and you also have a personal injury claim. This article applies to seamen or crew who suffer an injury while on a boat or ship.
Some of this article does not apply if you only have a Florida workers compensation claim.
The settlements, verdicts, and settlement values that I discuss below involve cases where someone’s negligence caused a knee injury to another. I focus as much as possible on the pain and suffering element of the claim.
There are over 86 Important factors that affect the value of a settlement for a knee injury so there is a chance that you may not get any money for your case.
As a starting point, I estimate the full value for the pain and suffering component for settlement purposes of a personal injury claim from an accident that occurred in Florida, or on a cruise ship or boat. Below is a picture of the anatomy of the knee.
We use the following numbers as a starting point for the full value of various knee injuries which were caused by someone’s negligence in a Florida accident.
- a broken knee (patella) without surgery: between $50,000 and $75,000.
- torn meniscus without surgery is between $15,000 and $30,000, but could be more.
- surgery to repair a meniscus tear in your knee is between $35,000 and $80,000 or so.
- partial patellectomy for $100,000 to $200,000. You could argue that the full value of pain and suffering for open reduction internal fixation (ORIF) surgery on a patella fracture is also $100,000 to $200,000.
First, I will discuss some broken knee settlements/verdicts and then I will talk about settlements/verdicts involving a torn meniscus. All of my settlements are before deduction for attorney’s fees and expenses. Most cases result in a lower recovery. It should not be assumed that your case will have as beneficial a result.
My Knee Injury Settlements
All of my settlements in this article are before deduction for attorney’s fees and expenses. Most cases result in a lower recovery. It should not be assumed that your case will have as beneficial a result.
My actual case: $75,000 Settlement for woman who had arthroscopic surgery on a plica in her knee. A car made a left hand turn in front of the car that she was driving and crashed into her. The at-fault car was cited for failing to yield the right of way.
Progressive insured the at fault driver.
Therefore, our client was an insured under the UM policy.
She also had epidural injections to a bulging disc in her lower back. Our client lived in Miami, Florida.
Our client owned a car. State Farm insured it.
My actual case: $25,000 settlement. My client claimed that a car crash caused his knee pain.
USAA paid $25,000. The accident happened in South Florida.
My actual case: $8,000 Settlement
Our client was standing in a car dealership parking lot in Miami-Dade County, Florida.. A mini van backed up. It hit him at an idle speed.
Our client’s knees buckled and he fell to the ground. He complained of lower back pain.
A few months prior to this accident, he had knee surgery. Immediately after this accident, he complained of knee pain. He did not have any swelling in his knee.
Miami-Dade Fire rescue came to the scene. Our client walked to the ambulance stretcher. He was put on a backboard.
The paramedics put a neck collar on our client. They transported him to Homestead Hospital.
State Farm Insurance insured the driver.
The driver said that he barely hit our client. He said that if contact was made, it was at a very low-speed.
Our client received therapy for several months after the accident. The final diagnosis was:
- Lumbar sprain/strain
- Cervical sprain/strain (Resolved).
- Sprain/strain of the knee
- Contusion to the knee
- Residual Lumbalgia
- Knee injury complicated by prior injury and surgery
- Patellar Dysfunction
My Broken Knee (Fractured Patella) Settlements
Settlement for a woman with a knee injury from a slip and fall at a Miami supermarket. This is one of my many settlements for a client who slipped and fell in a supermarket.
Our Torn Meniscus Settlements
GEICO insured the car that hit him.
Because he was on a motorcycle when he was hit by a car, he did not have to prove that his injuries were permanent in order to claim money for pain and suffering.
My actual case: $5,000 Settlement for a foreign crew member of a cruise line – based in Florida – who claimed a meniscus tear was caused when he slipped and fell on the ship. Negligence was difficult to prove.
Other (not mine) Broken Knee (Patella) Settlements and Verdicts
Actual Case (not mine): $375,000 Settlement for pain and suffering only for knee (patella) fracture from a fall down in a restaurant in Palm Beach County, Florida. The settlement was in February 2009. T
he customer, a 61 year-old-female administrator, suffered a patella fracture that required hardware (ORIF). She slipped and fell on grease.
The total settlement was for $425,000, of which $30,000 was claimed for past medical bills, $20,000 were for past wage loss, and $375,000 for pain and suffering. The case is Rhine v. LSMS Inc. d/b/a Tramonti Ristorante Italiano.
Actual Case (not mine): $250,587 Verdict for a female shopper who suffered a patella (knee) fracture when she slipped and fell at a Publix Supermarket in Palm Beach County, Florida.
She was in the checkout line and argued that Publix allowed water that spilled from a flower display near the checkout to stay on the floor for an unreasonable length of time. She also claimed that Publix did not warn of or clean the water.
My thoughts: This verdict tells me very little about the case because it does not say how much money was awarded for pain and suffering. This accident happened in 2006 and the law has become more difficult since then. If this case went to trial with the new law, the woman would have to prove that Publix knew or should have known that the water was on the floor.
Publix admitted liability (fault) in this case. It is not typical for a grocery store to admit that they caused a slip and fall case. Note: I heard that the entire verdict was for past medical bills, but I think this is an error. This case was Stanridge v. Publix Supermarkets Inc. 07-11954 AJ.
Actual Case (not mine): $5,000 for past Pain and Suffering for a 47-year-old female shopper who had a fall down in Publix supermarket in West Palm Beach, Florida in 2004. She fractured her patella, which required surgery with wires placed inside her knee. She had four months of physical therapy.
Her doctor said that she had a 6% impairment to her body, and another doctor testified that she had a 15% impairment and that she would need about $60,000 in future medical treatment. The doctor hired by Publix said that the Plaintiff had a 3% impairment.
The female shopper alleged that she fell on water while shopping at Publix. Publix argued that she was at fault, that there was no water on the floor, and that her previous health condition could have caused or contributed to her fall.
She allegedly received an offer from Publix of $65,000, which she rejected. She was allegedly then offered $100,000, which she also rejected. Her attorney allegedly told her to accept the offers.
The jury heard testimony that she had a prior doubtful claim. The jury also awarded her $35,264.39 in past medical expenses and $5,000 in future medical expenses. The verdict was in 2004.
My thoughts: The amount awarded to the shopper for pain and suffering is way below the average settlement value for knee (patella fracture) with surgery. If surgery is performed on the knee, like in this case, the settlement value increases.
Torn Meniscus Settlements/Verdicts (not my cases)
Actual Case (not mine): $4,300 Awarded for Pain and Suffering only for a surgery for a torn meniscus in right knee. It was caused by overextending of her knee. Additionally, he had surgery for a torn rotator cuff (shoulder).
The 55 year-old male shopper, a physician’s assistant, claimed that there was water on the floor in the floral department of Publix in Fort Pierce (St. Lucie County), Florida.
She claimed that the water was there because an employee was watering plants before he slipped and fell on the water. He was allegedly in prison for 2 1/2 years on a felony drug charge, but apparently the court did not allow Publix to mention his felony conviction at trial. His doctor recommended a total knee replacement and more shoulder surgery. The future estimated medical bills were $100,000.
My thoughts: I am unsure how much fault, if any, was placed on the shopper for not paying attention. Apparently, Publix was not allowed to mention his felony conviction at the time of trial. Normally, the judge will allow the defense attorney to ask the Plaintiff to tell the jury whether he has a felony.
The amount that was awarded here for pain and suffering for a rotator cuff surgery and a meniscus surgery is way below the average settlement range for those injuries. The case is Brachlow v. Publix.
Online Settlement Calculators for Knee Injuries in Florida Accidents (e.g. car crashes, slip and falls, etc.)
If you have a serious knee injury from an accident in Florida, or on a cruise or boat, I strongly suggest that you do not value your case based on an online settlement calculator. There are many reasons why settlement calculators do not work for Florida injury cases. This is true whether you are looking at my Florida injury settlement calculator or one that someone else made.
Did someone’s carelessness cause your injury in an accident in Florida, or on a cruise or boat?
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Check out some of the many Florida injury cases that we have settled, including but not limited to car accidents, truck accidents, slip or trip and falls, motorcycle accidents, drunk driving (DUI) accidents, pedestrian accidents, drunk driving accidents, taxi accidents, bicycle accidents, store or supermarket accidents, cruise ship accidents and much more.
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in May 2013 and has been completely revamped and updated.