In case of an injury to someone in a car accident or incident, Washington State law allows people to submit claims for personal injury to recover any financial losses resulting from the accident. The losses may include expensive medical charges, loss of pay, pain and suffering and are commonly known as ‘damages.’
If no claim is remedied and the worth of those damages is proceeding, a jury determines at some point the exact worth of the damages and can vary significantly based on the facts of each case.
The procedure of claiming personal injury is aimed to satisfy the losses of the victim and to “complete” him as though the damage had not occurred initially. And, as each scenario is distinctive, the monetary value components are also diverse.
In an accident the monetary or economic value of damages depends on the sort of damages an injured victim may have sustained.
Types Of Economic Damages You Can Recover
Economic damages, also known as special damages, refer to the losses that a victim has incurred that have a true economic value or can be attributed to a specific dollar cost. These damages can include:
- Medical expenses. A victim’s past, present and future medical care and treatment, as long as it is associated with the accident, can be recovered in a personal injury settlement. The amount is calculated by tallying the doctors’ bills, pharmacy receipts and other related healthcare expenses.
- Lost wages. Most victims of a car accident are forced to miss time from work. Whether it’s attending a doctor’s appointment or dealing with some other item related to the case, victims can be paid for the time they missed.
- Loss of essential services. If the accident harmed you so badly that you cannot perform routine household chores or activities, you may be compensated for paying someone else to do them.
- Property damage. You can be reimbursed for any vehicles, clothing or personal items damaged as a result of the crash.
- Out-of-pocket expenses. An accident can impact many areas of your life, and dealing with the day-to-day tasks involved can add up fast.
- Future cost of living
- Potential funeral expenses
For example, an injured victim who has accumulated $25,000 in medical bills, lost $10,000 in wages and totaled a $10,000 vehicle would be seeking approximately $45,000 in economic damages.
Examples Of Non-Economic Damages
In addition to monetary losses, victims may potentially seek to recover non-monetary losses through a personal injury claim. The key difference between these and monetary losses is that non-monetary losses are not easily defined, as there is rarely a price tag associated with the damages that are being sought. The two types of non-monetary losses are pain and suffering and loss of consortium.
Pain and suffering refers to all potential compensation for the physical pain that a victim has endured as a result of the accident. Emotional distress – the frustration, fear, anger and loss of enjoyment of life associated with suffering from an injury – is also considered when determining pain and suffering, and is usually a factor in more serious types of injury cases.
Loss of consortium is a general reference to any marital problems that arise between an injury victim and his or her spouse as a result of the accident. Specifically, this includes problems such as loss of affection, solace, comfort, companionship, and even sexual relations. It is not uncommon for married couples to experience unique hardships after an injury, and loss of consortium damages are a means for repairing those hardships.
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Ultimately, there are several factors that come into play when exploring the various types of damages that can be recovered in a personal injury claim. The state that the accident occurred in obviously plays a key role, as some states – like Washington – have restrictions on allowing punitive damages. And because each personal injury case is different, some cases may warrant recovery of certain damages while others may not.