Accidents do occur. No matter how much we try to avoid them, accidents do happen. Accidents occur whether caused by someone else, an act of nature, or just plain bad luck. When they do, it’s essential to know what kind of compensation you might be entitled to get from the person who was responsible for causing the accident. After all, if you were injured because of another person’s negligence, you deserve fair compensation.
We usually refer to compensatory and punitive damage when discussing personal harm caused by someone else’s negligence. Compensatory damage awards are given to people harmed by someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing. They’re intended to put them back into their position before their injuries so they can live their lives with some degree of normalcy.
Agruss Law Firm has an excellent record for winning compensation in personal injury claims. The following section reviews compensatory damages in more detail:
Definition Of Personal Injury Damages
Damages are one of the essential elements of the cause of action known as “negligence.” Negligence consists of three basic elements: duty, breach of duty, and causation. Duty is the obligation owed by one person to another. Breach of duty occurs when there is a failure to perform a duty owed to someone else. Causation refers to the connection between the defendant’s conduct and the plaintiff’s injury.
The term “damages,” as used in tort law, generally includes compensatory damages, punitive damages, and nominal damages. Compensatory damages seek to remedy actual losses suffered by an individual.
They include economic loss, such as lost wages and medical expenses; non economic loss, such as pain, suffering, emotional distress, inconvenience, mental anguish, and humiliation; and punitive damages, which punish the wrongdoer and deter others from similar behavior. Nominal damages are awarded solely to vindicate a procedural due process violation.
In some jurisdictions, nominal damages are called “nominal damages,” while compensatory damages are called “compensatory damages.” However, both types of damages are lumped together under the heading “damages” in most cases.
What Are Economic Damages?
Compensatory damage is one type of damage award. It includes both economic and noneconomic losses. This type of award compensates for injuries suffered by plaintiffs during their lifetimes.
Compensatory damages seek to compensate you for the money you’ve already spent on medical care, missed days at work, etc., due to your injuries. These costs can be documented through invoices, bills, and more, so they’re easier to prove than general damages.
What Are Non-Economic Damages?
General Damages — also Known As Noneconomic Damages, Non-Pecuniary Damages, Or Non-Monetary Damages — Are the other kinds of harm that result from a personal injury. They don’t have any monetary value attached to them.
Whereas economic damages can be paid back directly by insurance companies, noneconomic damages seek to compensate for intangible hardships from an accident. These hardships may not have any direct monetary costs associated with them. Still, it is your lawyer’s responsibility to translate these hardships into financial terms and demonstrate how they have affected you.
These types of damages are not easy to quantify; they are usually difficult to define and hard to measure. Because of this, amounts can be arbitrary and different from one jurisdiction to another.
However, imperfect as they are — even if they don’t always lead to full recovery — noneconomic damage awards also provide injured people and their families with some degree of financial relief and compensation for the tragic events they’ve suffered. Because they’re often used to hold wrongdoers accountable, they help ensure that risky behavior won’t just be reduced to an economic calculation.
Compensatory And Punitive Damages Are Two Types Of Damages Awarded
Personal injuries usually result from accidents, which often involve negligence. Negligence occurs when someone fails to act reasonably under the circumstances. A person who negligently causes harm to another has to take reasonable steps to avoid causing that kind of harm.
If they fail to meet their legal obligations, they can be held liable for any resulting harm. To prove negligence, plaintiffs must show that the defendants breached a duty owed to the plaintiff and that the breach caused damage to the plaintiff. Damage means “harmful effects.”
On one hand, punitive damage awards are usually not directly addressed in settlements. However, a skilled personal injuries attorney can sometimes persuade defense attorneys and insurance carriers that a case merits a larger out-of‑pocket payment because their clients may face substantial penalties if the case goes to trial and is decided by a judge or a jury.
How Attorneys Calculate Total Compensatory And Punitive Damages To Seek
An attorney calculates compensatory economic damages by summing all the expenses and lost wages his client has incurred due to an injury and then estimating the probable future costs he might incur.
They use their clients’ experiences to determine the full extent of the harm they’ve suffered and then translate those harms into a dollar figure that falls within a range they’ve seen paid out to others who’ve been injured similarly.
Suppose they decide that the client deserves punitive damage awards. In that case, they compare the facts of their situation to similar situations and come up with a reasonable range of punitive damage awards.
What Should You Do If You Are Injured In An Accident?
Contact a qualified personal injury lawyer immediately if you’re injured in an accident or incident. You may only have two years’ worth of legal recourse, so don’t miss out on your chance to get compensated for your injuries by missing deadlines.