Damages in a Motorcycle Accident Case
If you’ve suffered a severe injury, such as a back or neck injury, in a motorcycle accident, you’ve incurred significant financial losses. You might be the family member of someone who was hit by a car while riding and is dealing with the effects of a traumatic brain injury (TBI). More than likely, you already know the staggering medical costs associated with a TBI. Damages in a motorcycle accident case can be recovered in the form of compensation by filing a lawsuit.
A McEwen & Kestner motorcycle accident attorney is ready to help you recover those financial losses. If someone else is to blame for the wreck, our firm will work to find out who’s responsible and then hold them accountable for your suffering. You can call us at 800-732-3070 or contact us online for a free consultation.
What are Damages?
Damages are the expenses associated with an injury suffered due to the negligence of another. When you file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver or another party, you’ll be doing so to recover your damages. An attorney will gather the evidence needed to prove you weren’t to blame and that you deserve every dollar you’re demanding.
Types of Damages in a Motorcycle Accident Case
There are three main kinds of damages stemming from a motorcycle accident, economic, non-economic and punitive. The following is a brief look at each.
Economic damages are tangible and, therefore, easy to prove. You can produce medical bills, for example, to show the cost of your treatment. Examples of economic damages include the following:
These include surgical bills, prescriptions, doctor visits, transportation to the hospital and many others.
Past and Future Lost Wages
A severe injury will likely mean you can’t work – possibly for an extended period. You only have so much sick time and vacation days. Eventually, those will run out, and you’ll lose your wages.
Filing a motorcycle accident lawsuit could help you recover the wages you’ve lost and those you’ll continue to lose as long as you can’t get back to your job.
Lost or Diminished Earning Capacity
This means your decrease in income because of your inability to return to work. You may be unable to go back to your original job. Suppose you suffered a back injury so severe that you can no longer perform any physical labor. This could mean you’ll have to take another job that pays less. Or, you might have to reduce your hours.
Taking legal action could provide compensation for the lost income you’ll incur.
While your attorney will have little trouble proving your economic damages, proving non-economic damages is much more challenging. The reason is that non-economic damages are subjective. You can’t produce receipts for them, so you’ll need a skilled lawyer to place an accurate value on damages such as pain and suffering, loss of consortium and others. These are some of the more common non-economic damages.
Pain and Suffering
No matter what the cause of your accident is, you’re likely going through a great deal of pain and suffering. An experienced attorney will help you obtain maximum compensation for the misery you’ve been forced to experience.
Loss of Consortium
Loss of consortium can be part of a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. It refers to the loss of a familial or intimate relationship. A family member, for example, could seek to attempt these damages for the loss of companionship, affection, and love. A spouse could seek loss of consortium damages for the loss of sexual intimacy. You could also seek loss of consortium damages if you lose a relationship because of the accident or your injuries.
Emotional distress damages refer to compensation awarded to a victim for mental or emotional harm from the at-fault party’s actions. These damages provide financial compensation for things like anxiety, depression, shame, humiliation, or loss of quality of life. The amount of these damages will vary depending on the severity of the emotional distress and the circumstances surrounding the case.
Disfigurement or Scarring
These damages compensate the victim for the permanent physical changes they have suffered, which can significantly impact their quality of life. The amount will depend on factors such as the location and size of the disfigurement, its visibility, and its impact on the victim.
Punitive damages, also known as exemplary damages, are, as the name implies, designed to punish a defendant for particularly egregious behavior and deter similar conduct in the future. These damages are awarded in addition to any compensation for actual damages, such as medical expenses or lost wages.
You might be surprised to learn that punitive damages aren’t meant to compensate the victim. Instead, they send a message to the defendant and society as a whole that this type of behavior is unacceptable. Punitive damages are typically awarded in cases involving intentional misconduct or in cases where the defendant’s behavior was especially reckless or dangerous.
The value of punitive damages awarded can be substantial, often much higher than the other damages the victim incurred. However, awarding punitive damages is subject to strict legal standards.
How Much Will My Settlement Offer Be?
The amount of a settlement offer will depend on various factors specific to each case, including the nature of the injury, the value of damages suffered, the strength of the evidence, and the parties involved.
Some key factors that can influence the settlement amount include the extent of the victim’s injuries, the costs associated with medical treatment and rehabilitation, the amount of lost income and earning potential, and the degree to which the injury has impacted the victim’s quality of life.
The defendant’s insurance company or legal team will typically conduct a thorough investigation of the case and weigh these factors in determining the settlement offer. In some cases, comparable cases or settlements that have taken place in the past may influence your settlement offer.
It’s essential to consult with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney to determine the potential value of your case and the likely settlement offer. Your attorney will also give you an idea of how long your settlement will take.