When a person sustains injuries in an auto accident, they may claim several kinds of damages. While medical expenses are the basis of most claims, injured drivers can claim damages for lost income, loss of consortium, and pain and suffering. This guide focuses on the damages recoverable by a person injured in an auto accident.
Auto accident injuries vary in severity and type; while some only suffer a few minor bruises and cuts, others are left with lifelong disabilities. Furthermore, because some injuries may require future medical care, it is crucial for victims to seek medical treatment as soon as possible after an auto accident. Medical expenses may include, but are not limited to:
- Cognitive or physical therapy
- Ambulance fees
- Doctor consultations
- Medical equipment
- Permanent disability
- In-home care
If a victim’s doctor believes they will need further treatment, a local injury attorney will calculate the cost of that care.
Pain and Suffering
In the personal injury field, pain and suffering is defined as physical or mental distress for which a victim may receive damages. Settlements are based on the type and extent of the injury, the nature of the pain the person has suffered, and the person’s future outlook. In some instances, a plaintiff may receive pain and suffering damages for diminished enjoyment of life.
A victim may lose his or her earning capacity after an auto accident. Many are unable to work because of mobility issues, time in the hospital, and therapy sessions. Victims must prove that their injuries have diminished the ability to earn an income, and juries consider factors such as life expectancy, experience, skill, age, and occupation when making awards.
Loss of Companionship
If a victim is married, an auto accident injury could deprive them and their spouse of the ability to be affectionate. Legally referred to as loss of consortium, these damages are unique in that they are not claimed by the victim, but by the unharmed spouse. In cases where a victim dies of their injuries, survivors may claim loss of companionship and society damages.
A victim may be able to receive any or all of these damages in an auto accident claim. Call today for a free case review or check out BenzInsider for more info on what to do after a car crash.