If you have been injured in a car accident or through the fault of someone else, you probably have thought about what types of damages you can claim. What are damages?
According to legal-dictionary.com, the definition of damages for injury cases is defined as “monetary compensation that is awarded by a court in a civil action to an individual who has been injured through the wrongful conduct of another party.” With all of that legal jargon, it probably is necessary to clarify some of that. Damages is an amount of money that someone who is hurt receives because another was held liable.
What type of damages can you receive in an injury case?
When considering your injury claim, you need to understand what you can be compensated for in terms of damages. Damages generally refers to the following:
- Physical Injury and Pain
- Emotional Injury and Pain
- Any Lost Wages
- Reimbursement for Medical Bills
- Property Damage
If you are awarded damages in a case, they generally fall into two different categories. One is called compensatory damages and the other is punitive damages.
Compensatory vs. Punitive Damages in Accident Cases
Compensatory damages is those that provide relief to the injured party by covering their current and potential costs. The idea is that the injured person will have their life put back to how it was before the accident. Examples of compensatory damages, include: medical bills, property losses, loss of income, bodily injury, pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of future earnings, etc…
Punitive damages is another type of compensation that may be awarded. Although rare, the idea of punitive damages is to punish the person held liable for the injury. A sort of punishment for their intentional or careless behavior. We see this most come into play if someone has a flagrant disregard for the law, like in drunken driving cases. Again, punitive damages are very rare in accident cases, and so the focus will generally be on compensatory damages.
If you have additional questions about types of damages in an injury or accident case, feel free to get in touch with one of our staff members to get you answers.