If you or your loved one has suffered an injury, you have the right to seek compensation from the individual or party that contributed to it. You should seek advice from Schrueders Compensation Lawyers. In this case, the compensation is referred to as damages. They can either be punitive or compensatory damages.
- Compensatory Damages
They are further categorized into special or general damages. They seek to compensate or reimburse an injured party for the harm suffered. Compensatory damages are present in all the personal injury cases including medical malpractice, auto accident or slip and fall incidents. They are also awarded in wrongful death claims.
- Special Compensatory Damages
They are to compensate for any financial expenses incurred because of an injury. Special compensatory damages are unique to every victim so they will differ from one party to the next. Whether the victim incurred financial expenses because of the injury or lost money because of it, these damages should cover everything.
There’s no limit to the claims you can make under this category or the amount to be claimed on the same case. Some of the common claims include loss of future earnings, medical bills, cost of future medical care, loss of earnings, costs associated with cancelled trips or altered plans and household expenses.
- General Compensatory Damages
Here, you are compensated for any non-monetary damages incurred in an injury claim. They address the harm generally or typically sustained during an injury. Some of the common general damages include mental anguish, pain and suffering or loss of companionship and consortium.
- Wrongful Death Damages
Under this category, the damages are availed to the surviving loved ones or family members. The most common types of wrongful death damages include funeral and burial expenses, loss of financial contribution, loss of services and support, loss of companionship and consortium, emotional distress of surviving relatives and cost of pre-death medical care.
- Punitive Damages
The plaintiff will be awarded punitive damages if the defendant’s wrongful behavior was reprehensible or despicable. For instance, if a defendant is guilty of malicious or wanton acts of fraud such as sexual assault, aggravated battery or fraudulent behavior causing financial harm. In some cases, the jury will award punitive damages such as where defective products or prescription drugs result in health risks.
Calculating The Amount Of Damages
It’s much more difficult to prove general damages than special damages. It’s not advisable to add all the receipts and calculate the categories of damages you’re owed because everything is subjective in that situation. There are a few formulas in place for calculating the amount of damages owed to a plaintiff. To find out the actual amount you’re owed, you can also check jury verdicts on other personal injury cases similar to yours and find out the amount of compensation awarded. The more research you do, the higher the amount of compensation you will receive.
As the plaintiff, you can collect the damages from your claim once a settlement has been reached after or before the court proceeding. There’s a huge difference between receiving the damages and collecting the money. Defendants who are supposed to pay damages to a plaintiff might not be able to follow through or may be unwilling to pay the amount in the first place.
The plaintiff’s lawyer will proceed with discovering any undisclosed assets from the defendant that will assist in the payment of damages. Additionally, the lawyer might advise on garnishing the defendant’s wages to make sure that the plaintiff is paid everything he/she is owed. If the defendant has liability insurance, the insurance company is on the hook to pay for damages without any hassle.