If you have suffered any personal injury from a dog bite, a slip and fall accident, car accident, or an accident at your workplace, you have the right to seek compensation from whoever is responsible. In legal terms, this compensation is called damages. It is the amount of money that the party at-fault will give you to reimburse all your losses.
Among the different types of damages, the main two categories are general and special. They are also known as non-economic and economic damages. These types of compensatory damages are available for almost all types of cases.
In this article, we will take a closer look at the two main categories of damages that determine the settlement of a personal injury case.
General damages are given to the injured person for all the non-monetary losses he or she has suffered because of the personal injury. This compensation is called general as it refers to the injuries that are generally sustained in an accident. If you have suffered a personal injury, you are likely to have at least some general damages.
Although every personal injury case is a little different, the types of general damages can still be classified as:
- Physical pain and suffering
- Loss of companionship, the compensation amount will be paid to the family members in wrongful death cases
- Mental anguish and grief
- Physical disfigurement
- Physical impairment i.e. a disability caused due to the accident
- Poor wellness in life leads to a lowered quality of life
- Disruption of lifestyle
But general damages can be difficult to determine. This is because these damages are somewhat subjective. For example, it is extremely difficult to compensate a person who has lost a loved one in a fatal accident. Exact monetary value cannot be easily decided in these sensitive situations.
Another aspect of personal injuries is that as every case is different, no two people will be affected the same way even if they suffer the same kind of injury. Even if the circumstances of the incident are the same, the two people are not likely to recover within the same timeframe. In the case of a car accident, one person may develop psychological disorders such as PTSD. The others may not suffer from the same ailment but may develop severe anxiety.
While there is no exact formula for determining general damages, there are certain factors that decide the amount. They are as follows:
- Nature and extent of the injures
- Age of the injured
- The health of the injured before the accident, and whether they have any pre-existing illnesses
Special damages refer to the compensation provided to the injured person for their monetary losses caused due to the personal injury. These financial losses can be easily determined and are not complicated like general damages. But this amount is unique to the individual and can vary from one case to another.
For example, if you have been in a car accident that has destroyed your car, the at-fault party has to pay for your car. This amount can be easily determined. However, these losses have to be proven accurately for receiving compensation.
These damages can cover that is associated with the injury. There is no limit as to how much the injured party can claim for his or her losses. The most common special damages are:
- Expenses for repairing or replacing damaged property
- Loss of earnings while the injured person was recovering from the accident
- Medical and rehabilitation expenses
- Loss of employment or earning capacity due to the injury
- Costs of future medical bills
- Household costs and home maintenance
Calculating & Obtaining Damages For A Personal Injury
The damage calculation process can be simple or complicated based on a number of factors –
- The severity of the injury and its treatment
- The willingness of the party responsible for the accident to compensate for the special or general losses
- The skill of the lawyers to tackle the settlement case
- Accuracy of all the details related to the accident
The steps involved in receiving the desired compensation are –
- The first step is to seek immediate medical care. Even if the injury seems minor at first, visit a doctor and get it examined. Secure all the medical bills and receipts that depict the medical expenditure
- If possible, collect as much evidence you can about the incident that will help your lawyer prepare the case for you. This includes medical records, pictures of the incident, eyewitnesses, and details about any other expenses related to the incident
- Get in touch with a personal injury firm. Claim settlement is a complicated process and you cannot do it on your own. Personal injury lawyers are experienced in tackling these cases and they will help you construct the case methodically. This will ensure that you get your desired compensation. If you need additional medical care or therapy, they will connect you with the best doctors
- The at-fault party’s insurer may decide on an amount that is lower than that you have claimed. It is the responsibility of your personal injury lawyer to prepare the case so well, that you receive the maximum compensation
Therefore, it is extremely important for you to select your lawyer wisely. Before choosing a lawyer, as questions about his or her experience in this field, the number of similar cases handled, and their success rate.
At Claim Settlement, our network of lawyers we connect you with have over 20 years of experience in handling personal injury and accident cases and have helped clients recover the maximum compensation in claim settlements. Our initial consultation is absolutely free and you don’t pay your lawyer until you receive the compensation you deserve. If you have suffered an injury or been in an accident call us at 1-833-892-5246 for a free consultation or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org