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What are the Most Common Forms of Compensation in Personal Injury Cases?

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Posted on November 24, 2023

All sudden injuries are painful and traumatic, but when it’s a preventable injury that occurred due to someone else’s negligent, reckless, or wrongful actions, it’s even more distressing—especially when the injuries caused serious damages to the victim. In personal injury claims, “damages” are the physical and economic consequences of the injury to the victim. When another party is at fault for the injury and the damages caused by the injury, the victim shouldn’t be left responsible. A serious injury can cause significant financial hardship to the victim and their family. A successful personal injury claim not only brings financial relief, it also helps victims achieve a sense of justice and holds negligent parties accountable for their actions.

Common Personal Injury Claims

Not all accidents warrant a personal injury claim. For instance, if you slip and fall on your child’s toy in your own home you’re left to face the damages with your own medical insurance. However, others owe a duty of care to take reasonable measures to prevent causing injuries. If they breach this duty by acting negligently, and the result is an injury to someone else, a personal injury claim is the court’s means of offering redress to the victim. Common personal injury claims include the following:

When any of the above fault-based injuries cause expenses and pain and suffering to the victim, a personal injury claim can help.

Damages Available for Compensation in Personal Injury Claim

Injuries quickly become expensive, especially when they’re severe enough to interfere with the ability to return to work at the same time that large, unanticipated medical bills begin coming in. A personal injury claim commonly brings compensation for damages including the following:

  • Medical expenses already incurred
  • Future injury-related medical expenses
  • Reimbursement for lost wages
  • Future income loss
  • Diminished future earning capacity due to disabling injuries

The courts consider the above damages as tangible, economic damages. A skilled personal injury attorney will carefully calculate these damages so nothing is missed.

Most personal injury claims also allow victims to claim non-economic damages including any or all of the following, depending on the type and severity of the injury

  • Compensation for pain and suffering
  • Disfigurement compensation
  • Compensation for traumatic limb loss
  • Emotional damages such as PTSD, anxiety, depression, emotional anguish, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium (the full emotional and physical relationships with a loved one)

A San Diego personal injury attorney carefully reviews your case, consults with medical and psychological experts, and interviews close family members of the victim to determine all of the impacts of the injury on the victim’s life in order to maximize the amount of compensation they can claim.

Punitive Damages in Some Personal Injury Claims

In cases of egregious actions resulting in an injury, the victim may also make a claim for punitive damages. This is an amount of money that serves as a punishment and deterrent to the defendant rather than as compensation to the victim, but it may significantly increase the amount of a settlement or court award for damages.

Who Pays the Compensation in a Personal Injury Case?

Only very rarely is the at-fault party held personally responsible for damages from their own funds. Typically, compensation for the victim’s damages comes from the appropriate insurance policy, like an auto insurance policy in a car accident or property insurance in a slip-and-fall case. Do not hesitate to reach out to a San Diego car accident attorney for a free consultation today.