There’s no doubt that a car accident can leave you with a lot to handle. And while you focus on recovering your health and easing your pain and suffering, the financial realities of your situation can quickly set in.
Even if you’ve worked hard to build some savings, they can quickly evaporate as you pay off medical bills and cover your daily living expenses during your recovery.
Sure, a personal injury lawsuit might help offset these losses, but how much are you going to recover from your claim?
The basics of damages
First, it’s important to realize that there’s no guarantee that you’ll recover compensation from your claim. Before you’ll be awarded damages, you’ll have to prove that the defendant was liable for your injuries, so a significant portion of your case is going to focus on showing how the defendant was negligent and how that negligence resulted in your injuries.
However, if you’re successful in your claim, then you’ll have the ability to recover economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are those that are objective and calculable, like medical expenses and lost wages.
Keep in mind, though, that these damages are forward-looking, too, so you’ll want to have an idea of how much your anticipated medical expenses and lost wages will cost you, too.
Non-economic damages are those losses that are more subjective in nature. They include your pain and suffering, mental anguish, and lost enjoyment of life. Here, a judge or jury is going to look at how your injuries have impacted your life and figure out how much that damage is worth.
What factors are important to your damages?
There are a lot of factors that will be taken into consideration in your case. However, each of the following may be especially important in your case:
- The severity of your injuries: This aspect of your case will heavily speak not only to your need for ongoing medical care but also to how your injuries have affected your ability to live your normal life.
- Your recovery time: Time is money, and that’s certainly true in the personal injury context. The longer your recovery is expected to take, the longer you’re going to be out of work and the more likely it is that you’re going to need ongoing treatment. This can cause your financial damages to rack up.
- Your ability to return to work: While your injuries will probably keep you out of work for a while, they might completely prohibit you from returning to your previous position. If this is the case, then your economic losses might be more extensive than you thought.
- The existence of disfigurement: If your accident is going to leave you with embarrassing scarring, then you’ll probably face extensive noneconomic damages moving forward. This can be a key component of that aspect of your case.
There are other factors that can come into play in your case. Just be thorough as you analyze the facts of your case so that you can appropriately argue to recover the full extent of your damages.
Do you need help building your case?
The outcome of your personal injury case can have a tremendous impact on your recovery and your future. With that in mind, you should diligently work to build the robust legal claim necessary to position you for success.