Check out the 13-page pitch deck that legal-tech startup PainWorth used to nab $1.7 million for its seed round

PainWorth founders amid car wreckage
  • PainWorth, an app that helps personal injury victims, just raised a $1.7 million seed round.
  • The startup uses data to assess how much injury claims are worth.
  • Here’s the pitch deck that impressed investors in PainWorth’s first-ever funding round.

Introduce the startup


PainWorth, a personal injury claim tool, raised a $1.7 million ($2.1 CAD) seed round in December 2021.

Founded in 2019, the Canadian startup combs through cases and other data to help personal injury victims calculate how much their claims are worth.

Early-stage VC fund 2048 Ventures led PainWorth’s seed round, which is the startup’s first venture financing so far. Panache Ventures and Mistral Venture Partners, both Canadian venture funds, also participated in funding. 

The public-facing version of the deck excludes specifics about the startup’s user base size, milestones, and revenue model.

Tell PainWorth’s origin story


PainWorth’s cofounder Mike Zouhri came up with the idea after being hit by a drunk driver in early 2019. Growing frustrated by the lack of clarity from personal injury lawyers, many of whom refuse to give any useful information until a prospective client signs a contract that binds them to a hefty fee, Zouhri decided to make his own tool to help figure out the value of his claim.

On top of that, some claimants can’t get paid legal help because their case is too small, or because they simply don’t live near enough to a lawyer.

“It was a dysfunctional system that added more insult to injuries,” Bryan Saunders, PainWorth’s director of growth and marketing, said.

Describe the problems existing claimants face


PainWorth’s main focus is to improve access to justice.

“The old way of doing things is unsustainable: It’s slow, adversarial, manual, and expensive,” Saunders said.

Personal injury lawyers, who typically work on commission, can be expensive, costing claimants 30-40% of the money they receive for their claim, according to Saunders.

The costs can add up, especially since cases can be drawn out: Fewer than 6% of cases are reach a judgment in less than three years, PainWorth found. That can be debilitating for victims who need the money sooner.

“The incentives are a little perverse,” Saunders said, describing how lawyers get a higher percentage cut of the final claim value the further the case goes, while insurance companies want the smallest settlement amount. “Nobody’s talking about your injuries,” he said. “They’re talking about the number.”

Elaborate on other issues


Another issue that PainWorth wants to tackle is the human bias involved in the claims process. For example, a lawyer might negotiate less for certain clients or a judge could have an unconscious bias against women. Doctors’ reports may also be biased, as studies show that doctors tend to take women’s concerns less seriously.

Technology can help overcome those biases, according to Saunders.

Introduce PainWorth’s solution


When a user files a claim on PainWorth’s platform, they’ll enter information like when and where the accident happened, whether they’ve had to miss any work, and any out-of-pocket expenses they’ve made for medical care.

Then, in seconds, PainWorth’s machine-learning technology will comb through the information and similar personal injury cases to determine the value of the claim. PainWorth then provides the claimant, insurance company, and lawyer with all that information.

PainWorth’s app is used for simple cases, which make up 70 to 80% of all personal injury cases. More complicated claims may require a lawyer’s expertise, Saunders said.

Illustrate growth


This slide illustrates how PainWorth has grown since its version 0.1 proof of concept, which Saunders called “the really ugly baby of what it is now.”

The graph shows user growth on the platform. At the time of fundraising, users found PainWorth through word of mouth and SEO. A couple of well-placed media hits also accelerated growth.

Elaborate on popularity and growth


PainWorth’s cofounders originally built the 0.1 version to help Zouhri figure out his own case after his hit-and-run incident, bootstrapping the entire project. After realizing how the tool could also help other claimants, the cofounders raised a friends and family round to hire a developer and build out a better-looking version of the app.

PainWorth aims to keep its app free for accident victims. Its revenue will largely come from paying professional users, like lawyers, insurance companies, and large entities that deal with lots of claims, such as theme parks, food companies, and construction companies, according to Saunders.

Introduce the team…


PainWorth’s team has since expanded to include insurance and legal professionals. In April last year, the startup also acquired ProSe Claims, a California-based legal services directory, to help its expansion into the US.

… and the advisors


Explain how PainWorth will use the funding


PainWorth plans to use the fresh capital to scale its data intake — a crucial process since it needs to update the algorithm every year to account for changes in inflation, wages, and new jurisdictions.

The startup also wants to hire more marketing, development, and sales employees. It plans to launch in some US states this year, and, after that, is eyeing international markets.

Provide further validation…


PainWorth has won several awards from both the insurance and legal industries.

“Insurance companies are happy because they can settle claims a lot faster,” Saunders said. “And lawyers like this because it makes the work a lot easier and faster, so they can take on more cases.”

…from the insurance industry…

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