A recent Jury Verdict Research analysis of jury verdicts over the last 10 years found that the overall median award for the amputation of one toe is $119,008. The median award for foot nerve damage or tarsal tunnel syndrome accident cases was $143,265. Underscoring the difficulties of the healing process in the complex structures that are our feet, the median award for foot injuries generally is $98,583.
The median for foot injuries generally makes sense to me. I’m stunned that the average verdict for an amputated toe is as low as it is. You have to remember that unless this is a lawnmower case, it is likely that the plaintiff suffered other injuries as well. In any event, I certainly think I value my 10 toes more than American juries.
Big Toe Versus Little Toes
There is no question that the value of the big toe is much greater than the other four. The big toe provides strength, balance, and ability to propulse in gait. It bears approximately 40% of your body weight. You cannot, for example, join the military without a big toe.
That said, many people do perform fairly well without a big toe and, after an adjustment period, walk, run, and jump and otherwise live a normal life. Ultimately, the value of your case is going to depend on how the jury thinks the loss of the toe – big toe or otherwise – impacts you.
It is also fair to say that who you are matters. Losing a toe would have little impact on me cosmetically. No one at the beach is going to care if I’m missing a toe. But if you are a 17 year-old girl who takes pride in her appearance, the value of the case is going to be much higher.