If you are injured in an accident where someone else is responsible, you are likely looking into a personal injury lawsuit to recover your losses. Here are the types of damages you can receive after suffering from a personal injury.
Punitive damages are awarded in situations where someone acts with reckless disregard or malice. It is behavior that is intentional that ends up causing your injury, regardless if the end action was intentional or not. The most common situation involving punitive damages is a drunk driving accident where someone willingly drinks too much alcohol and gets behind the wheel of a vehicle. However, punitive damages can also be awarded in physical altercations where the purpose was to intentionally hurt you.
The term "special damages" is related to anything that you can put a dollar amount on regarding a loss related to your injury. The most common form of special damages are medical bills, which include all past and future bills. This is not just the amount that you pay out of pocket, but what your insurance has paid for your medical bills. If someone is found to be responsible for their actions that caused your injury, your insurance company will be reimbursed for the damages.
Special damages also extend to wages that are lost from not being able to work, your durable medical bills that you had to buy to recover from your injury, and medications that you were prescribed by your doctor. You can even include transportation costs if necessary, and the value of a sick day that you need to take for future doctor's appointments.
Pain and suffering fall under the category of general damage, which is your compensation for having to go through this traumatic injury. It is simply not enough to receive compensation and break even with the costs associated with being injured, but to receive something in addition for your troubles. General damage can vary greatly depending on the type of injury you suffered from and what type of lasting effect it had on you.
You can still be awarded compensation if you are partially responsible for causing the accident. It is typically based on the percentage of responsibility you are assigned and having that deducted from the settlement that is awarded. For example, if you are found to be 25% responsible for causing an injury, you would receive 75% of the compensation related to those damages.
Talk to a personal injury attorney to learn more.
After I got into an accident a few years ago, I realized that I needed to hire an attorney, and fast. I didn't know how to proceed through the course of the investigation by my insurance company, so I searched the area for a personal injury lawyer who could help. I was really impressed with how intelligent my lawyer was and how hard he worked to make things right with my case. After a few months, my lawsuit was settled, and I really felt like I couldn't have done it without him. This blog is all about understanding personal injury law and the benefits of working with a lawyer.