What are personal injury damages?
There are two types of damages that may be awarded in a personal injury case: compensatory damages and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are designed to reimburse the victim for their losses, while punitive damages are designed to punish the at-fault party and deter future negligent behavior.
What types of losses are compensated?
Compensatory damages may be awarded for both economic and non-economic losses. Economic losses include things like medical bills, lost wages, and property damage. Non-economic losses include things like pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life. In some cases, punitive damages may also be awarded.
How is compensation calculated?
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. The amount of money you can expect to receive will depend on the specifics of your case. However, there are a few general principles that will typically be used to calculate compensation.
One common method for calculating compensatory damages is to multiply the victim’s economic losses by a number between one and five, depending on the severity of the injuries. For example, if the victim has $10,000 in medical bills and their injuries are considered to be severe, they may be awarded $50,000 in compensatory damages.
Another common method is to award a lump sum for all of the victim’s losses. This lump sum may be calculated using the multiplier method described above, or it may be calculated using a more complex formula that takes into account the victim’s age, expected future earnings, and other factors.
Last common method is to award a per diem rate for each day the victim suffers from their injuries. For example, the victim may be awarded $100 per day for every day they are in pain.
Which Method is Used?
There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to choosing a method for calculating damages. The most important thing is that the victim is fairly compensated for their losses. Some states have laws that dictate which method must be used in personal injury cases, while other states give judges and juries discretion to choose the method they believe is best in each individual case.
What if the at-fault party is found to be more than 50% at fault?
If the at-fault party is found to be more than 50% at fault for the accident, they will be responsible for 100% of the victim’s damages. This is known as joint and several liability.
What if the at-fault party can’t pay?
If the at-fault party doesn’t have enough money to cover the victim’s losses, the victim may still be able to receive compensation. This can be done through a process called subrogation. Subrogation allows the victim to file a claim with their own insurance company, which will then go after the at-fault party’s insurance company for reimbursement.
Now that you understand how personal injury compensation is calculated, you can start to put a value on your claim. Keep in mind, however, that every case is different, and the final settlement or verdict in your case will depend on a number of factors.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney. They can help you understand the likely value of your claim and will fight to get you the maximum amount of compensation possible.