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Economic vs Non-Economic Damages in Personal Injury Cases

Determining the compensation for personal injuries like a back injury or damage to a totaled car involves understanding the concept of “damages” in personal injury cases. Damages encompass various types of compensation, including economic, non-economic, and, in some rare cases, punitive damages.

These damages can be awarded to those who have faced losses following an accident. In most cases, a personal injury attorney can greatly assist when pursuing damages. Speaking to a personal injury lawyer at Yosha Law can ensure you get the compensation you deserve. 

Consult with a personal injury attorney to secure the rightful compensation for your case.

Economic Damages

Economic damages in personal injury cases are tangible losses that can be quantified in monetary terms, or with a set value. These damages are there to compensate the victim for the financial impact of their injuries. 

  1. Medical Expenses: This encompasses hospital bills, doctor’s fees, surgeries, medications, rehabilitation, and other healthcare-related costs.
  2. Lost Income: Another significant aspect of economic damages is compensation for lost wages or income from the injury. This includes income lost due to time taken off work for medical treatment or recovery and future loss of earning capacity if the injury leads to long-term disability or impairment that affects the individual’s ability to work and earn a living.
  3. Property Damage: These damages may also cover the cost of repairing or replacing property damaged in the accident. This can include vehicle damage in car accidents or personal belongings in other types of accidents, such as slip and fall incidents.
  4. Other Financial Losses: Damages may encompass other out-of-pocket expenses directly related to the injury. This can include transportation costs for medical visits, home modifications for disabilities, and other expenses incurred due to the accident and injury.
  5. Future Medical Expenses: Economic damages may include estimated future medical costs for injuries requiring ongoing or future medical treatment. This accounts for anticipated medical expenses for ongoing care, rehabilitation, and any necessary medical interventions in the future.

Injury-related pain and suffering are commonly included in non-economic damages.

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages in personal injury cases are intangible losses that do not have a set value or are not easily quantifiable in monetary terms but are real and significant. These damages are made to compensate the injured party for the non-financial impact of their injuries. 

  1. Pain and Suffering: Non-economic damages often include compensation for the physical pain and suffering experienced as a result of the injury. This encompasses the immediate pain endured at the time of the accident, as well as any ongoing or chronic pain and discomfort resulting from the injury.
  2. Emotional Distress: Personal injury cases may seek compensation for emotional distress or mental anguish caused by the injury. Emotional distress includes psychological effects such as anxiety, depression, fear, sleep disturbances, PTSD, and other emotional trauma stemming directly from the accident and its aftermath.
  3. Loss of Enjoyment of Life: Non-economic damages may also account for the loss of enjoyment of life experienced by the injured party. This refers to the diminished ability to engage in activities and pursuits they previously enjoyed or to fully participate in life experiences due to the limitations imposed by their injuries.
  4. Loss of Consortium: When the injury affects the injured person’s relationships with their spouse or family members, non-economic damages may include compensation for loss of consortium. This encompasses the loss of companionship, affection, emotional support, and intimacy suffered by the injured person’s loved ones due to the injury.

Calculating personal injury damages.

How Personal Injury Damages Are Calculated

Determining compensation for personal injury cases in Indiana involves looking at various factors to come to a fair amount. Here’s an overview of how damages are calculated:

  • Compensatory Damages: These aim to compensate the injured party for their losses, including medical expenses, lost income, property damage, and pain and suffering. There’s no statutory cap on compensatory damages in Indiana.
  • Punitive Damages: In cases involving grossly negligent behavior, punitive damages may be awarded solely to punish the wrongdoer and keep them from similar conduct. Indiana imposes a cap of $700,000 or three times the compensatory damages, whichever is greater, on punitive damages.
  • Comparative Fault: Indiana follows what’s called a modified comparative fault system. This means, if the injured party is partly responsible for the accident, their compensation may be reduced based on the percentage of fault, as long as it doesn’t exceed 50%.

Calculating damages requires a deep understanding of the case’s specifics, including applicable laws and precedents. Experienced personal injury attorneys, like those at Yosha Law, work diligently to ensure injured parties receive equitable compensation for their losses and injuries.

How To Secure Damages From A Personal Injury In Indiana 

Proving liability for a personal injury in Indiana involves showcasing negligence on the part of the at-fault party. Here’s a simplified outline of the process:

  1. Establishing Duty of Care: The first step in proving liability is establishing that the at-fault party owed a duty of care to the injured party. For example, drivers must operate their vehicles safely and follow traffic laws to ensure they keep themselves and others on the road safe. 
  2. A Breach of Duty: Once the duty of care is established, it must be proven that the at-fault party breached that duty through reckless actions or failure to act reasonably. This could include speeding, running a red light, or failing to maintain safe premises.
  3. Causation: It must be clearly shown that the breach of duty directly caused the victim’s injuries. In other words, the injuries would not have occurred if it hadn’t been for the actions or negligence of the at-fault party.
  4. Proving Damages: Finally, the victim must provide evidence of the damages they suffered due to the injury. This can include medical records, bills, lost wages, and any other financial losses sustained due to the injury.

Get Compensated Fully After A Personal Injury 

Achieving full compensation following a personal injury is necessary for financial stability and recovery. At Yosha Law, we’re committed to maximizing your compensation to cover all damages that resulted from your injury. 

With our experienced team advocating for you, you can trust that every part of your case will be looked over and pursued to make sure you receive the most amount of compensation. For more assistance, contact us today to schedule your free case evaluation.

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