In the realm of personal injury claims, there are two accepted categories of sought after damages: compensatory and punitive. Compensatory is generally broken down even further into general and special losses. Now, which damages you seek in your claim depends on the specific injury you suffered and how that injury came to be. Although, to help you understand these losses better, it is necessary to break them down individually. Therefore, the rest of this article will break down the specifics of general, specific and punitive damages.
Compensatory damages are typically established to recoup financial losses due to a sustained injury. When described as general, the injuries are classified as non-economic losses. These injuries are more abstract or psychological. For example, a person might sue for pain and suffering or loss of consortium. It is possible that a victim might choose to file for a loss of social status as well. These injuries are harder to prove and often require the assistance of expert witnesses, like behavioral health professionals.
Special damages are considered economic injuries. Unlike general injuries, these are easy to prove and typically have a paper trail. For example, lost wages and medical expenses are commonly sought after an accident. Also, a person may sue for the restoration or replacement of damaged property. These damages are the easiest to prove and are often irrefutable. However, you will still need to demonstrate how the accident attributed to the specific injuries you are claiming, and if you are seeking lost wages, you will need to show that your rehabilitation required you to miss work.
The last form of damages is called punitive, and they are sought in only the worst cases when an injury was purposefully caused. These cases are often tied to criminal cases because they often deal with criminal intent or neglect. However, regardless of a criminal case, you can still file for punitive injuries, if you can prove intent or previous knowledge. There have been cases where an individual is found innocent in criminal court and guilty in civil court.
Personal injury cases rarely seek every type of damage, but compensatory losses are common. What are the specifics of your accident and injury? Were you injured on the job or involved in a car accident? Do you suspect foul play, or was it just a chance event? If you don’t have all the answers, that’s OK. Contact a personal injury attorney in Longwood, FL to discuss your claim and ask about potential damage claims.
Thanks to David & Philpot, P.L. for their insight into personal injury claims and damages you should seek.