Types of Compensation in a Personal Injury Case
What types of compensation are there in a personal injury case?
There are three types of personal injury damages a plaintiff is entitled to in a personal injury case: economic, non-economic, and punitive damages. Economic damages can be broken down into two categories: special and general. Special damages compensate the plaintiff for medical expenses, lost wages, loss of future income, property damage, and, if applicable, any necessary travel costs for medical treatment. General damages compensate the plaintiff for pain and suffering, loss of consortium or companionship (lack of having a spouse), and, if applicable, the cost of hiring household help as a result of your injuries.
Non-economic damages can be broken down into two categories: limited and general. Limited non-economic damages cover those losses that are not easily calculable in dollars, for example, loss of enjoyment of life. General non-economic damages cover those losses that are easily calculable in dollars but do not fit into either special or general economic damages, for example, loss of consortium/companionship (lack of having a spouse) or future medical expenses.
Who is eligible for these types of compensation?
In most personal injury cases, the injured party is eligible to receive all three forms of compensation. In wrongful death cases and in some auto accident cases, certain family members may be limited or barred from recovering non-economic damages such as loss of consortium/companionship (lack of having a spouse). However, in these cases, the family members would still be entitled to receive economic damages such as loss of future income.
Learn more: Win Your Injury Case.
How do you know what type of compensation you are entitled to receive?
It is difficult for any layperson to determine how much each type of compensation is worth in a particular case. As mentioned above, special damages are usually fairly easy to calculate; however, general and non-economic damages can be extremely difficult to calculate. As such, we highly recommend that you seek the advice of a personal injury lawyer in Gainesville, GA. For this reason, it is important to hire an attorney as soon as possible following your injury so that any necessary evidence can be preserved and presented at trial or settlement negotiations.