When you sue someone for your injuries in the wake of a truck accident, you can expect to recover two types of what are called compensatory damages: economic and noneconomic. As their name implies, these compensatory damages are the amounts that you allege the defendant owes you to compensate you for the losses arising from your injuries.
Keep in mind that various states have different names for these damages that your personal injury lawyer can clarify for you.
In general, economic damages consist of easily quantifiable accident-related expenses, such as the following:
- Emergency room care
- Diagnostic tests
- Hospital and surgical care
- Follow-up doctor visits
- Physical therapy
- Rehabilitation services
- Prescription medications
- Medical equipment, i.e., crutches, walkers, wheelchairs, prostheses, etc.
The loss of your wages or salary are also economic damages, and both they and your medical and other expenses include not only those you’re sustained to date, but also those you can reasonably expect to incur in the future.
While economic damages apply to the expenses and losses for which you have bills or other hard proof, noneconomic damages consist of more subjective losses, including the following:
- Physical, mental and emotional pain and suffering
- Lingering disfiguring scars
- Loss of a body part or bodily function
- Necessity of having to use a wheelchair, prosthesis or other assistive device in order to move around
- Loss of your ability to fully function on a day-to-day basis
- Loss of your ability to fully participate in the sports and other recreational activities you enjoyed prior to your injury
- Loss of your overall enjoyment of life
Depending on the circumstances surrounding your injuries, you may be able to collect punitive damages in addition to your economic and noneconomic damages. Courts award punitive damages in cases wherein the defendant’s actions or failure to act were so egregious that they (essentially) shock the public consciousness. In other words, the purpose of punitive damages is to financially punish the defendant.
While punitive damages are not a component of most personal injury lawsuits, they tend to be awarded far in excess of economic and noneconomic damages when they apply.
Calculating the Monetary Value of Your Case
If you are curious about the amount of damages that could potentially be awarded–should you choose to file a truck accident case–connect with the experienced legal team at John K. Zaid & Associates today. No two cases are exactly alike, so it is important to avoid making assumptions–either positive or negative–about the value of your case until our Houston, TX truck accident lawyer team has evaluated your unique circumstances.