Types of Economic Damage Eligible For Compensation
If you suffer a personal injury that is someone else’s fault, you can file a lawsuit against them. After bringing a successful claim, you will be awarded damages based on your losses. Three main types of damages are available – economic damages, non-economic damages, and physical impairment/disfigurement damages. Economic damages are awarded to compensate you for your quantifiable economic losses arising from your injury. These damages may include the following:
When claiming medical expenses arising from personal injury, you must consider not only current medical expenses, but also all future medical expenses that could arise from your accident for the rest of your life. Many serious injuries require years of treatment and rehabilitation, as well as long-term prescription medication. If your claim is too small and you run out of money, you cannot go to court to seek more money later. To estimate and prove your medical expenses, you will need the medical expertise of someone familiar with your case, preferably from the hospital or clinic that is treating you. An experienced Denver personal injury attorney will work with medical experts to obtain the evidence necessary to seek full and fair compensation.
Lost Wages/Earning Power
If you missed work because of your injury, you will need to calculate the total amount of income that you lost, as well as future earnings. Your employer should be able to help you calculate and document this figure. If your injury is serious enough, you might expect to have to reduce your future working hours or abandon your career altogether. As with medical expenses, you may need to look ahead to the remainder of your lifespan, depending on the nature of the injury. Benefits that were lost as a result of the injury factor into this calculation.
You are also entitled to recover out-of-pocket expenses even if they are not directly related to your injury. For example, if your injury or hospital stay required you to pay for child care, you may include child care expenses in your damages. You may also recover transportation expenses between your home and hospitals and clinics. Just about any out-of-pocket expense could be included in your claim, as long as you can show a reasonable causal relationship with your injury.
A court may reduce your damages under certain circumstances:
- Partial fault: If you were partly at fault in the accident, Colorado law requires courts to reduce your damages by your degree of fault as determined by the court, up to 50 percent liability. If the accident was 10 percent your fault, for example you will lose 10 percent of your calculated recovery. If you were 50 percent or more at fault, you will recover nothing, and you may even have to pay the other party, under a modified comparative fault model.
- Failure to mitigate: Courts generally refuse to award compensation for losses that could have been avoided with the exercise of reasonable care. A classic example is a motorcycle accident in which you failed to wear a helmet.
- Pre-existing injury: If you have a pre-existing injury or condition that was aggravated by your accident, you are only entitled to recover damages to the extent of the aggravation, not the pre-existing injury.
Zinda Law Group Advocates Aggressively for Our Clients
Zinda Law Group is a Denver personal injury law firm with a well-deserved reputation for going the extra mile for its clients. The aftermath of a personal injury can be an emotionally wrenching time without adding financial insecurity to an already challenging situation. We understand these concerns, and our highly experienced Denver personal injury attorneys are ready to fight for your right to full compensation. Do not hesitate to call 303-800-1501 to schedule your free consultation.