If you want to file a personal injury claim due to a slip and fall, car accident, medical malpractice or any other claim, the questions that keep crossing your mind are what your case is worth and how to win your claim. The following article will educate you on types of damages, how damages are accessed, and the measures you should take in order to get a fair compensation.
Factors That Are Considered When Valuing Damages
Some of the factors that are considered when determining the value of damages are what caused the injury, the type of injury and how the injury has affected your ability to carry on with your daily routines. After your attorney has gathered enough medical information on your condition, he or she will be able to assess your claim and come up with an accurate value for damages. A team of lawyers will determine how much in damages you deserve by reviewing the laws on your particular case, comparing your situation with other cases that were decided by the court and by also taking into account similar cases that they have dealt with.
What are Compensatory Damages?
In most personal injury cases, the damages awarded are compensatory. This means that the damages are meant to compensate you for what you lost because of your injuries. Compensatory damages are supposed to make you whole again in terms of finances. Some of the common compensatory damages are:
- Loss of income
- Medical expenses
- Loss of property
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment
- Emotional distress
What are Punitive Damages?
If the defendant is found to be careless or egregious, you may be paid for punitive damages as well as compensatory damages. Punitive damages act as punishment to the wrongdoer/defendant for their conduct and as a warning to the public.
How Can My Actions or Inaction Affect Damages?
If you are partly to blame for an accident, the damage award may reflect that. Many states use the concept of comparative negligence that determines damages based on your share of responsibility in an accident. In some states the concept of contributory negligence is used to determine damages. According to this concept, you cannot get any compensation if you are found to have partial responsibility for the accident.
Failure to mitigate the impact of an accident can also affect your damages awards. In many states, a plaintiff can get a reduced damage award if they fail to minimize the impact of an accident. One example could be failing to seek medical attention after a car accident and causing your injuries to get worse.
In order to get fairly compensated for your injuries, you will require medical proof, documentation, expert opinion and a good personal injury lawyer in Austin, TX, or your particular locale.
Showing your injuries is not enough to make a strong case; you will have to provide a medical report that confirms the cause and effects of your injuries.
It is important to gather as much information as possible. Try to secure photos of the scene, eye witnesses, get a copy of the police report and write down your version of the event. This information acts as solid proof during hearings and trials.
In some cases, expert opinion is required to show that your injuries were caused by the defendant. The expert could be a medical expert testifying about your injuries or a road expert who uses photos of the scene to show fault. Experts help to show negligence or failure to exercise duty of care.
Presenting medical reports, documents and expert opinion on your own may not be enough to convince the court to give you a fair amount of damages. A personal injury lawyer will be crucial in gathering evidence and valuing damages. An experienced attorney will use their legal expertise to pursue a just amount of damages.
Author information: Anica Oaks is a professional content and copywriter who graduated from the University of San Francisco. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she’s used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here.