A serious car accident injury could leave you with not only costly medical bills, but also debilitating physical and emotional pain. If you are filing a claim or lawsuit to cover your damages, you can help prove your medical expenses by providing receipts and/or medical bills. However, non-economic losses are more difficult to prove.
There are many factors involved when pursuing compensation for damages incurred following an accident. Much depends on the type of insurance you carry, the steps you take following the accident, the handling of your case, and the extent of your injuries.
It is important to understand that there is no exact calculation for determining pain and suffering in an accident claim. Instead, insurance adjusters and courts will look at certain factors and make the best determination accordingly.
A non-economic loss means that there is no way to measure it in terms of medical costs, such as doctor visits, tests, surgery, or rehabilitative services. Some basic considerations for calculating damages for non-economic losses are the nature of the injury, the severity of the injury, the long-term or permanent effects resulting from the injury, and the amount of recovery time the injury has taken or is expected to take.
Medical records are essential to proving pain and suffering. The records will include the extent of the recovery process, any surgeries or procedures, and any rehabilitative services that have taken place.
The testimony of a medical expert is also extremely valuable. Also valuable would be the testimony of a counselor or psychologist who has had sessions with the plaintiff.
The testimony of family, friends, and acquaintances about the condition of the plaintiff is also helpful. This testimony would be important to establish the comparison of the claimant’s physical and emotional state before and after the accident.
Economic damages are easy to calculate because they deal with objective figures, such as medical expenses and lost wages. For example, if the plaintiff had a severe leg injury from a car accident and they required surgery at a hospital, they will have the bill for their treatment. Also, the medical expenses include not only current expenses, but also expected medical costs in the future. Typically, calculating economic damages involves totaling all invoices, bills, and receipts.
Punitive damages are awarded when the defendant’s negligent behavior or conduct leading up to the accident is found to be egregious or extremely careless or reckless. The intent of the court, in this case, is to punish the defendant. It is also defers other people from acting in the same way in the future. Punitive damages are afforded in rare cases.
How Does Negligence Affect Compensation?
The damages awarded to a plaintiff by a court depends on each party’s percentage of fault. The plaintiff’s percentage of fault will be deducted from the overall compensation award. Thus, if a plaintiff is found to be 30 percent at fault for the accident, they will receive 70 percent of the damages.
In Pennsylvania, in order to be eligible to collect damages, you cannot be more than 51 percent at fault.
Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC Can Determine if You Are Eligible for Compensation
If you have been seriously injured in a car accident, a lawyer can make all the difference. One of our experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC will determine if you are eligible for compensation. Call us at 215-569-8488 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia, Abington, Media, Pennsylvania, and Wilmington, Delaware, we serve clients throughout the surrounding areas.