After a devastating car crash has left you seriously injured, you have the right to hire a personal injury attorney to represent you in a claim for damages. When another party was at fault for causing the crash, they can be held accountable for compensating you for your losses. After a catastrophic crash, our car accident team will seek to recover three types of damages: medical expenses, lost wages, and compensation for the pain and suffering you have experienced.
Damages Typically Available After a Car Accident
The types of damages you can seek after a serious injury in a car wreck will depend on the losses you have suffered. As your lawyers, we will pursue every avenue of compensation and every type of recovery applicable to your case. These will likely include the following.
Medical expenses stemming from car accident injuries encompass a broad range of costs. These expenses include but are not limited to, ambulance fees, emergency room visits, hospitalization, surgeries, diagnostic tests (such as X-rays, MRIs, and CT scans), medical treatments, medications, physical therapy, rehabilitation, and ongoing medical care. In some cases, you might require long-term or even lifelong medical attention, which can result in substantial financial burdens.
Calculating medical expenses after a car accident involves not only the immediate costs but also the potential future costs that you might incur. Our team often works with medical experts to estimate the future medical needs of the victim, factoring in ongoing treatments, medications, therapy, and potential complications that could arise from the injuries you sustained in the accident. This is particularly important when negotiating a settlement or presenting a case in court, as it ensures that you are adequately compensated for both current and future medical expenses.
When an accident results in injuries that prevent you from working or significantly diminish your ability to earn a living, it can have far-reaching financial consequences that extend well beyond immediate medical expenses.
Lost wages refer to the income that you would have earned had you not been injured in the accident. This includes wages lost due to being unable to work immediately after the accident, as well as any sick leave, vacation days, or other benefits used during the recovery period. Calculating lost wages is relatively straightforward for individuals who are employed and have a consistent salary or hourly wage. These losses can be documented through pay stubs, employment records, and a letter from the employer confirming the time missed from work due to the accident.
Earning potential, on the other hand, encompasses the ability to earn income in the future. Car accidents can result in injuries that lead to long-term or permanent disabilities, which in turn can significantly impact your ability to pursue your chosen career or earn at the same level as you did before the accident. Estimating earning potential requires a more complex analysis, so we often work with vocational and economic experts who can assess your skills, education, work history, and potential career trajectory. These experts take into account various factors such as your age, industry trends, and the potential for advancement.
In cases where the injuries are severe and permanent, the impact on earning potential can be substantial. This is particularly true if you have specialized skills or work in a high-income profession. Compensation for diminished earning capacity aims to provide financial support for the gap between what you would have earned over your lifetime had the accident not occurred and what you are now capable of earning due to your injuries.
Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering damages encompass a range of physical and emotional distress that you might experience as a result of a car accident injury. These damages recognize the lasting impact that the accident can have on your quality of life, overall well-being, and mental state. While they are more challenging to quantify compared to economic damages, they are equally crucial in providing holistic compensation for your ordeal.
Types of pain and suffering damages include the following:
- Physical pain. The immediate and ongoing physical discomfort, pain, and agony resulting from injuries sustained in the accident.
- Emotional distress. The psychological toll of the accident, including anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other emotional challenges.
- Mental anguish. Intangible suffering, such as mental anguish, distress, and shock due to the traumatic nature of the accident.
- Loss of enjoyment. The inability to partake in activities that brought joy and fulfillment before the accident, leading to a diminished quality of life.
- Loss of consortium. The impact of the injuries on personal relationships, including the loss of companionship, intimacy, and support from family members or partners.
- Disfigurement and scarring. The emotional distress caused by visible physical changes resulting from injuries, which can affect self-esteem and body image.
- Grief and bereavement. In fatal accidents, the pain and suffering experienced by surviving family members due to the loss of a loved one.
- Inconvenience and disruption. The disruption of daily life and routines, including the inconvenience of medical appointments, therapy, and recovery efforts.
- Fear of future harm. The anxiety and distress associated with the fear of potential future complications or accidents related to the injuries sustained.
- Physical impairment. The suffering caused by long-term or permanent physical limitations, disabilities, or impairments stemming from the accident.
Pain and suffering damages are often determined based on the severity of injuries, the impact on your life, medical evidence, expert opinions, and the effectiveness of legal representation. While these damages can be challenging to quantify, they play a critical role in acknowledging the holistic toll of a car accident injury, ensuring that you receive compensation that reflects your complete experience.
You Deserve Full Compensation After Your Crash—We Can Help!
If you or a loved one was seriously injured in a car accident in Indiana, New Mexico, or Michigan, there is a Keller & Keller office near you to help. Our lawyers and investigators will get to work right away determining the full value of your claim and fighting to recover all of the damages you are owed. Call us from any state at 1-800-253-5537 or fill out our contact form to connect with a Keller & Keller law office near you.