Types Of Damages In Personal Injury Cases
Personal injury law provides remedies for the person injured (plaintiff) in the form of economic and general damages. Punitive damages are rarely awarded and are not technically considered a compensatory element of personal injury damages. Instead, punitive damages are meant to punish the defendant for malicious conduct and in most states must be proved by clear and convincing evidence.
To recover compensation under the tort of negligence, the plaintiff must prove that a duty of are was owed to the plaintiff, that this duty was breached by the defendant, and that the breach was the legal or proximate cause of plaintiffs damage. Damages can be assessed in personal injury cases under economic losses and general damages, otherwise known as pain and suffering, loss of consortium and emotional distress.
Recoverable economic damages include the cost of medical and hospital bills, loss of earnings, property damage, and any other economic loss which can be proven by a preponderance of the evidence as resulting from the defendants wrongful conduct.
In order to be compensated for your damages, the court must be able to reasonably ascertain the value of the loss. If your damage claims are are considered “speculative” and would require guessing by the court or jury, the law prevents you from recovering such damages.
If you have been damaged by someone else’s negligent or intentional conduct, you should consult with an attorney who can help you determine the nature and extent of your damages and the probability that you will be able to recover them under the law of personal injury.