What Are Non-Economic Damages In A Car Accident Case?
If you sustained an injury in an accident, you have the right to recover economic and non-economic damages. Tell us about your injury for a free case evaluation and enjoy a no-obligation consultation with one of our Miami
After a car accident, there are two types of damages that you can claim: economic damages and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are meant to compensate an accident victim for monetary losses that result from an accident. Examples of these damages are compensation for medical bills, property damage, and lost earnings. Such damages can be calculated on the basis of medical expense receipts, repair service fees, or as aggregate figures for future or expected wages.
On the other hand, non-economic damages are a more abstract form of damages. Unlike economic damages, non-economic damages are not defined in exact monetary terms. These damages correlate directly with a wrongful driver’s actions and determining their real value can be quite complex.
What is the Significance of Non-economic Damages?
While economic damages help in covering medical bills from bodily injuries, property loss, and other tangible expenses, the effect of an accident on someone’s life is usually more than financial. Vehicle accidents lead to severe injuries that negatively impacts the victim’s quality of life and can create debilitating emotional and physical problems that prevent the victim from enjoying their life. As a result, non-economic damages are meant to compensate someone for the loss in the quality of life that they now have to live with.
Types of Non-economic Damages
Florida’s Financial Responsibility Law allows you to claim compensation for damages resulting from an accident. Some non-economic damages our lawyers will help you pursue are:
- Pain and suffering: This type of damage refers to the pain an accident victim suffers right from the point of injury through the entire treatment process. For instance, a patient who suffered back injuries from an accident may receive economic damages to cater to treatment, and non-economic damages for their suffering.
- Emotional anguish/pain: Depression, emotional distress, anxiety, insomnia, and frustration are typical examples of emotional pain. These may be difficult to assess since a court of law will need to determine the amount of emotional anguish that is sufficient to deserve compensation.
- Loss of consortium: The pain and suffering you have to live with after an accident will not affect you solely; it can have an impact on the relationships you have with your spouse or family. Loss of consortium is commonly used to address strains on family relationships that linger after accidents. Typically, loss of consortium should be claimed by the injured party’s spouse.
- Disfigurement, disability, and loss of a body part: Some accident injuries have effects that last for years and do not cease even after medical treatment is completed. In the event of a disability or disfigurement, victims can claim compensation if their appearance is altered permanently. Such injuries may also have an impact on the daily life of a victim, causing emotional and physical difficulties as well.
- Loss of enjoyment of life: Accident-related injuries can have consequences that may affect a victim’s daily life. They may also affect how he or she spends their free time. Loss of enjoyment of life is a non-economic damage that aims at compensating victims for all difficulties they may have in enjoying their lives after an accident. For instance, if a crash resulted in a broken leg, the victim could be derailed from engaging in recreational activities such as swimming, sightseeing, biking, and so on.
- Humiliation and damage of reputation: An accident may change a victim’s social standing. You can claim this as part of non-economic damages.
What are Punitive Damages in a Car Accident Claim?
Punitive damages are intended to monetarily punish the person who led to your injuries if you believe that he or she acted out of gross negligence or willful recklessness. For example, if an intoxicated driver hit you, you may be awarded additional money from the driver’s assets beyond basic non-economic and economic damages with the intention of punishing the driver and deterring similar behavior in the future.
How are Non-economic Damages Calculated?
Unlike economic damages, non-economic damages are hard to put a price tag on. However, our lawyers will gather the evidence needed to have your non-economic damages calculated on the basis of:
- The severity of trauma or the injury
- The injury’s permanency
- The projected recovery period
- Disruptions in the victim’s daily life
- The extent of inconvenience caused by the injuries
When seeking damages in a bodily injury claim, you need to keep in mind that compensation will only apply for damages that result directly from your accident. This means that the issue may become complicated if you had pre-existing conditions. Although the person responsible for your accident will still be accountable for their negligence, claims can significantly vary based on preexisting facts or conditions. In such cases, the court will have to determine whether medical expenses after the accident were a direct cause of the injury.
Our Lawyers are Waiting to Help. Call Now.
If you sustained an injury in an accident, you have the right to recover economic and non-economic damages. Tell us about your injury for a free case evaluation and enjoy a no-obligation consultation with one of our Miami car accident experts. Call us today at 305-928-2909.