At last count, there are approximately 284 million registered vehicles in the U.S. traversing the roads, highways, and streets. Each year, 6 million of those vehicles get into accidents. Beyond the fender benders, many accidents can result in severe injuries.
When someone’s negligence is the cause of the accident, a remedy must be found for the victim. That is when an experienced personal injury attorney gets involved. This legal professional is in the best position to help find a resolution to compensate for that accident.
If you find yourself in this type of scenario, it will help to understand the different types of New Jersey car accident damages that can occur. Making an informed decision about your options is the best way forward.
This is what you need to know about those types of New Jersey car accident damages:
Compensatory damages fall into two categories: economic and non-economic damages. For example, with a personal injury claim, those compensatory damages can cover medical bills, lost wages, and any compensation resulting from mental anguish.
Compensatory damages are the broad category of damages that can occur due to a personal injury accident. The compensation amount will be clarified as your personal injury claim progresses.
The compensation for any economic damage needs to make you whole. In other words, there should be compensation for any money you are out of pocket due to your injuries.
The most significant out-of-pocket loss would be for medical bills. That goes beyond the initial payments to an emergency room or your general care physical. You could also incur losses for the following:
- Ongoing physical therapy
- Insurance co-pays
- Medical devices like crutches, slings, and wheelchairs
Your PIP insurance may cover many of those expenses. However, if there is a cap to the benefit payouts, you need to be compensated for what you pay beyond the insurance benefits.
Economic damages also can cover your lost income. So even if you only miss a few days of work due to the accident, there should still be compensation for the lost wages.
In some accidents, the victim never returns to work. Therefore, the loss of future income becomes another factor in the economic damages figure. That would be the reasonable income from the day of the accident to the retirement age of the victim. That can be a significant amount.
It is easy to quantify economic damages. However, there will always be bills to pay, and those numbers are finite. Non-economic damages provide compensation for intangible losses.
Those types of losses can include enduring physical pain and limited mobility. The non-economic damages also cover what is referred to as “loss of consortium or companionship.”
That goes along with the loss of enjoyment of life. So, for instance, if you enjoy bowling or other sports but can no longer participate because of the accident, you should be compensated.
These non-economic damages manifest in different ways for different people. That is why there isn’t a definitive value scale. Instead, a person’s life could be examined before the accident. Then, if the injuries drastically impact that life, there must be a remedy.
Punitive damages take aim at any recklessness or proven malice that was a contributing factor to the accident. For example, there have been personal injury lawsuits involving trucking accidents where the trucker fell asleep at the wheels because of overworking. In that case, you could sue the trucking company that prevented adequate rest for its truckers.
The same punitive principles can be applied to a defective product. If a company sells a product that it knows to be defective, then they are acting recklessly.
It will become the responsibility of your personal injury attorney to calculate the damages. You will provide them with all the factors listed above. That is where experience in these types of lawsuits is vital.
Your attorney will know what would be considered acceptable as a settlement offer. But, again, that figure needs to cover all the types of damages. If that figure is rejected, a new plan will start. That will involve filing a formal lawsuit.
The majority of personal injury lawsuits never go to trial. Filing the lawsuit often becomes the motivation that an insurance company or other responsible entity needs to settle. That is why it is crucial to retain the services of an experienced personal injury attorney. They will help find a fast and fair resolution.
Help with a Car Accident Claim in New Jersey
You deserve to get the maximum amount of compensation for your losses after a car accident caused by someone else’s negligence or reckless behavior. Working with an experienced New Jersey car accident lawyer can make all the difference in the outcome of your case. Why risk being unfairly compensated and not having recourse to fix it? When you hire a personal injury lawyer from Brandon J. Broderick, you pay nothing upfront. We work on contingent fees that are only collected if we win your case. If we don’t win, you don’t pay.
Contact Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law, for a free consultation. With our proven track record of success and our commitment to client care, we can turn your setback into a comeback. Locations across New Jersey, from Trenton to Jersey City.