What are Damages?
Seeking damages after a car accident is not purely about the money, even though money awards help injured parties get back to a life of normalcy, it is about making the plaintiff whole. Damages are awarded to the plaintiff in a personal injury case to help them move on with life in the best way possible.
Calculating damages depends on several factors, including medical billed costs, pain and suffering and lost wages. Attorneys at Balkan and Patterson can assist you in calculating your damages.
Special Damages: Economic
Special or economic damages are generally easy to calculate. If you or someone you love is injured in a car accident for which you were not at fault, you will likely have all sorts of medical, rehab, and vehicle repair bills.
Additionally, if the person injured was unable to work and lost income, those lost wages are also included in economic damages. Lastly, if the injuries created additional costs, such as home renovations (to provide disabled access), these can also be included in special damages.
It is always best to consult the board-certified personal injury attorneys at Balkan and Patterson about including all costs associated with your injuries.
General Damages: Noneconomic
General or noneconomic damages are a bit more difficult to calculate. These damages are also referred to as pain and suffering, inconvenience, disfigurement and mental anguish. General damages are less about bills and more about the level of ongoing pain or loss of certain abilities as a result of the injuries. The noneconomic damages are then added to the economic damages for the total number.
For example, if the injured party lost the ability to provide for their family or enjoy certain things in life as a result of their injuries, these would be calculated and then added into the damages amount.
If the at-fault party in a car accident was DUI and extremely reckless, then Florida law also can allow for punitive damages. These damages are less about helping you get on with life and more about outright punishing the guilty party.
The experienced attorneys at Balkan and Patterson can help you determine whether or not your case also merits punitive damages.
Statute of Limitation
In Florida, you have four years from the day of the accident to file your personal injury claim. Even though that seems like a lot of time, it is important to discuss your case with a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney will help you properly document all costs associated with your injuries so that your case is as strong as possible.
What is Comparative Negligence?
In Florida, the defendant (the one accused of negligence leading to injury) may accept some negligence but try to make the case that you or the plaintiff was also negligent. That is comparative negligence.
For more information about how a South Florida car accident attorney can help you with your case, contact Balkan and Patterson at 561-750-9191 or visit our website.