What Damages Can I Get From A Car Accident
In a perfect world, individuals that are injured because of another party’s negligence would be instantly made whole. Property would be completely replaced and injuries would be healed. Unfortunately, we don’t live in that world. In the real world, we rely on the law to provide a remedy for victims in personal injury cases, such as car accidents and truck wrecks. This is primarily done through monetary damages. Under Texas law, there are a variety of different damages available to injured persons. Some of these damages are incredibly common, and available in all cases, while others are less obvious. Some of the types of damages include:
If you are hurt by someone else, you are entitled to recover all medical expenses deemed reasonable and necessary by the court. This means that victims of car accidents can have their ER bills taken care of, and injured workers can get their physical therapy covered. Medical expenses are perhaps the most common form of damages in Texas personal injury cases.
Lost Wages and Lost Earning Capacity
If you are unable to work and lose wages after being injured in an accident, a jury may award money damages compensating you for the earnings that you missed. Additionally, under Texas law, a jury can consider future earning capacity and lost wages in awarding damages. For example, if you were injured in an automobile accident, and as a result you were forced to spend months off of work to recover from your injuries, one element of damages would be the earnings you missed out on in the past. If you are told that you may never work that job or any job again, you could seek monetary damages for your decreased future earnings in addition to your lost wages. Oftentimes, this type of evidence requires economic experts to calculate the difference between an injured person’s projected future earnings after the injury and what their projected earnings would have been before the injury.
Serious personal injuries often have long-term lingering effects. Victims in these cases often find themselves unable to live the life once they enjoyed. In Texas, juries can award damages for any reductions in the ability to do the things the injured person could do before the injury. Jurors are given discretion to consider the ways in which someone’s life changes after they are injured by someone else. While it is impossible to fully make up for the loss of a normal life, it is possible to obtain monetary damages when you are unable to play with your children, exercise, or sleep through the night without discomfort.
Physical Pain and Mental Anguish
Texas law also provides juries with a means of awarding money damages to compensate injured parties for their pain and anguish. It is important to note that jurors are not required to award damages for pain, but they may choose to award them. Mental anguish is less clearly defined, but damages can be awarded under this category when a victim endures a level of emotional discomfort that is greater than everyday stress.
Punitive damages are not available in all cases. In fact, these damages are available only in instances where the conduct of the defendant is so grossly negligent or the conduct is so bad that the jurors feel that they need to punish the responsible party. Over the past few decades, the State of Texas has added constraints to the availability and amount of punitive damages in personal injury cases, but they are still available in the most serious of cases.
In all cases, obtaining a damages award will require that the injured party offer sufficient proof. If you are the victim of another party’s carelessness, you need to contact a personal injury lawyer with the experiences necessary to evaluate your case and build a damages claim that will allow you to seek the compensation you need.