Personal injury cases arise from various situations, from car crashes to work accidents, and can have a profound financial impact on the victim and their family. However, if the accident is due to someone else’s negligence, you can recover compensation for your losses.
In most cases, you can recover compensatory damages covering economic and non-economic losses. Economic damages are losses that can be quantified in monetary terms, such as medical bills and property damage. In contrast, non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, are more subjective.
Some cases may also involve punitive damages intended to punish the wrongdoer and deter others from similar conduct. Contact a Rand Spear personal injury lawyer to learn what compensation you can receive.
These are a payment given to someone injured in a personal injury case. They are meant to help make the injured person “whole” again by compensating them for any losses they have experienced due to the injury.
There are two main types of compensatory damages: economic and non-economic. These focus on different aspects of the losses suffered by the accident victim.
After a personal injury accident, you likely experience high financial losses. Your tangible losses, such as medical bills and lost income, are known as economic damages. Depending on the details of your case, you could qualify for:
- Medical expenses: If you were injured due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for the costs of medical care. This can include hospital bills, doctor visits, surgeries, prescription medication, and rehabilitation.
- Property damage: You may recover the repair or replacement costs for property damaged in an accident. For example, after a car crash, you could recover the cost of repairing your damaged vehicle and replacing any personal items that were damaged beyond repair during the collision.
- Lost wages: If you are unable to work due to the injury, you may be entitled to compensation for the wages and income lost as a result. This can include the wages you would have earned during the recovery period and any future lost earning potential.
- Out-of-pocket expenses: This can include expenses such as transportation costs to and from medical appointments, the cost of home healthcare, and the cost of medical equipment or supplies.
Economic damages are generally easier to quantify and can be supported with documentation, such as receipts, bills, and pay stubs. It is important to document your expenses carefully to ensure that you receive fair compensation from the insurance company or the liable party.
In addition to the physical injuries sustained, a personal injury victim may experience significant emotional trauma and social disruption. For example, you may suffer from social isolation and difficulty maintaining relationships due to the ongoing effects of the injury.
These effects can significantly impact your overall quality of life and can persist long after the physical injuries have healed. An experienced lawyer can help you address the full scope of the injury’s impact. For example, you could be entitled to the following non-economic damages:
- Pain and suffering: It can include everything from physical discomfort and limitations to emotional trauma.
- Emotional distress: This refers to the psychological impact the injury has had on you, including feelings of anxiety, depression, fear, and trauma. Emotional distress can include both short-term and long-term emotional effects.
- Loss of enjoyment of life: In some cases, you may no longer be able to participate in activities you once enjoyed or may experience a significant reduction in your quality of life.
- Loss of consortium: This refers to the impact the victim’s injuries have had on their relationship with a spouse or partner. Specifically, it recognizes the loss of affection, support, and intimacy the injured person’s spouse or partner experiences due to the injury.
- Disfigurement or scarring: You can recover from any permanent or long-lasting physical scarring or disfigurement suffered as a result of the accident. This can include scars, burns, amputations, and other physical disfigurements that significantly impact your appearance and self-esteem.
While it can be difficult to put a monetary value on non-economic damages due to their subjective nature, they are an important element of any personal injury case.
To prove intangible losses, you must demonstrate that you have suffered a psychological injury after the accident. This can be done through the testimony of mental health professionals, as well as your testimony regarding your symptoms and experiences.
In rare cases, punitive damages may be awarded to the injured plaintiff. These are typically awarded in cases where the defendant’s conduct was particularly egregious or malicious, such as cases involving intentional harm, fraud, or gross negligence.
Unlike economic and non-economic damages, which are intended to compensate the victim for their expenses, punitive damages are meant to punish the wrongdoer for their actions and to deter similar behavior in the future.
It is also important to note that some states limit the amount of recoverable punitive damages. For example, in New Jersey, punitive damages may not exceed five times the compensatory damages or $350,000, whichever is greater.
Wrongful Death Damages
Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult experiences a person can go through, and it can be especially painful when the death was caused by someone else’s wrongful or negligent actions.
In such cases, the surviving family members may receive compensation in the form of wrongful death damages. These damages are meant to ease the financial burdens that arise from the loss and provide a sense of justice.
Wrongful death damages include:
- Funeral expenses
- Medical bills and other expenses related to the deceased person’s illness or injury
- Loss of financial support, including future income and benefits that the deceased person would have provided to their family members
- Loss of companionship, guidance, and emotional support
- Pain and suffering experienced by the deceased person before their death
The specific damages available in a wrongful death case can vary depending on the state where the case is being heard and the circumstances surrounding the person’s death.
An experienced wrongful death attorney from Rand Spear can help you understand your legal rights and options for seeking compensation.
A Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help You Receive Compensation
You may be entitled to damages if you or a loved one have been injured due to someone else’s negligence or intentional actions. A personal injury lawyer can help you navigate the legal system and fight for fair compensation.
At Rand Spear, we can determine what type of compensation you can receive. Our skilled lawyers will use all available evidence to determine the full extent of your accident-related losses and claim maximum damages.
Contact our law firm today to schedule a free initial case review. This session is a free, no-obligation legal consultation in which a personal injury attorney can address your immediate concerns regarding financial recovery.