Types of Damages You May Be Entitled to After a Personal Injury

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. This compensation, known as damages, is meant to restore the injured party to their original financial and physical state prior to the incident. In a personal injury case, damages are broken down into two distinct categories: economic damages and non-economic damages. In this blog post, we will discuss the different types of damages you may be able to receive after a personal injury.

Economic damages

Lost wages: This type of economic damage covers wages that were lost as a result of an injury. It is calculated based on the amount of money you would have earned had you not been injured.

Loss of earning capacity: Loss of earning capacity is similar to lost wages, but it covers the potential for future income. If your injury limits your ability to work or results in a lower salary than you would have otherwise earned, you can seek compensation for this potential future income.

Medical bills: Medical bills are one of the most common types of economic damages in personal injury cases. These damages cover any costs related to medical care for your injury, including doctor visits, hospital stays, physical therapy, medications, and more.

Out-of-pocket costs: Out-of-pocket costs refer to any other expenses that were incurred as a result of your injury. This could include transportation costs, such as taking taxis or rideshares to doctor’s appointments, or the cost of hiring someone to help with household chores while you were recovering.

Non-economic damages

The most common types of non-economic damages include:
Pain and suffering – This refers to the physical and emotional pain and suffering endured due to an injury. It may include things such as chronic pain, anxiety, depression, or any other psychological or emotional distress caused by the injury.

Loss of consortium – This type of damage is awarded to the spouse of the injured party if their relationship is impacted due to their injury. For example, if a spouse is no longer able to engage in physical activities with their partner or provide them with emotional support due to their injury.

Loss of enjoyment in life – This type of damage compensates for any lost opportunities for leisure or social activities due to an injury. It could include being unable to enjoy hobbies or interests, or missing out on certain family gatherings and events due to an inability to participate.

Punitive damages

In order to recover punitive damages, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant’s conduct was malicious or so reckless as to be tantamount to malice. It must also be proven that the defendant acted with a wanton disregard for the safety of others. Generally speaking, punitive damages are not easy to win and can be difficult to calculate.

In addition to being difficult to win, punitive damages are often subject to limits based on the jurisdiction in which the case is filed. As such, it’s important to be aware of the applicable laws and regulations when seeking punitive damages. In some states, punitive damages can be up to four times the amount of compensatory damages awarded.

Ultimately, punitive damages are designed to discourage similar behavior in the future by punishing those who behave recklessly or maliciously. If you’re pursuing a personal injury case, it’s important to be aware of your right to punitive damages and to determine if they’re applicable in your situation.