If you are a victim of personal injury, one of your main concerns will be the compensation you are likely to receive after filing a lawsuit. In personal injury cases, you will only be paid monetary damages if a person or company is found to be at fault or negligent in their actions. These damages are meant to put you in the position that you were at before the accident or injury.
The amount of money you receive will mainly depend on how the injuries have cost you financially, physically and mentally. You can negotiate with the other party and agree on the damage award or if your personal injury case is taken to trial a judge or jury will order the damage to be awarded.
There are different kinds of personal injury damages:
When the damage is considered “compensatory” it is meant to make up for all financial and physical losses experienced by the victim as a result of the accident or injury. Compensatory damages are basically meant to help the victim recover financially after all the losses incurred following the injury.
The most common types of compensatory damages include:
- Medical bills
- Lost Income
- Pain and suffering
- Property loss or damage
- Emotional Distress
- Loss of Consortium
- Loss of opportunities
- Loss of enjoyment
It is very hard to quantify the consequences of an accident, which is what compensatory damages attempt to do. Some forms of losses and expenses like medical bills and lost wages are easy to quantify but for something like pain and suffering, it becomes really hard to place a monetary value on it. That’s the role of the judge or jury to determine.
The main purpose of awarding punitive damages is to punish the defendant for their negligent actions or conduct that led to accident or injury. Punitive damages are usually given when the defendant is found to have been blatantly careless and/or is unwilling to change their ways and may likely cause damage to others. These damages may be awarded to the victim or injured plaintiff in addition to the compensatory damages. Punitive damages are meant to act as a deterrent to further personal injuries.
How Much is Your Case Worth?
Most people don’t know that their inaction or actions following an accident can diminish the amount of damages they are going to receive in a personal injury case. For instance, if you are found to be partially at fault for the accident that resulted in your injuries, the amount of damages may be reduced. In some states, you will not receive any compensation if found to be partially to blame for the accident.