What Are The Noneconomic Damages in a Car Accident Case?

After a car accident, there are two different types of damages that may be recovered: noneconomic and economic. Through economic damages, the victim of the car collision can receive monetary compensation for their losses, such as loss of wage, property damage, and medical bills. The amount given in economic damages is often calculated by adding up vehicle repair receipts, medical bills, and financial statements from an employer. By comparison, noneconomic damages are intended to compensate the victim for non-tangible losses, such as pain and suffering. 

What are specific examples of noneconomic damages?

Noneconomic losses or damages are not defined solely in monetary terms, and are established through assessing the degree in which the victim suffered and the wrongful actions of the at-fault driver. Essentially, the victim is to be compensated in correlation to the harmful behavior of the other party. Examples of noneconomic damages can include:

  • Physical disfigurement
  • Pain and Suffering
  • Physical Impairment
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Companionship
  • Mental anguish

How do I know whether I should pursue noneconomic damages?

Your attorney can evaluate the circumstances of the accident and what you have endured from start to finish, then give you insight into potentially how much you could pursue in noneconomic damages. To figure out how much to fight for in your case, your attorney may ask questions about how your lifestyle has changed, whether your relationship with your spouse has become strained, if you are no longer able to perform the same work you used to, and other ways that you have been adversely affected by the car accident emotionally and physically. 

Car accidents commonly result in severe injury that impacts the victim’s quality of life to some degree. An accident where two vehicles weighing around 3,500 pounds collide together suddenly can surely cause debilitating physical and emotional issues to develop. By attempting to recover damages that are noneconomic, the goal is for the victim to be brought as close as possible to the health they were at before the incident occured.

What evidence would be useful in proving noneconomic damages?

You can use your medical records to help prove to the extent that your injuries caused you anguish, hardship, and disability. Your attorney may ask you to obtain copies of medical exams, diagnostics, and treatment plans from your doctor, so details about your injuries can be used to emphasize what you have gone through. Your attorney may also speak with a medical expert that is not your treating doctor about how they view your injuries. The medical expert can attest to how painful, uncomfortable, and/or debilitating your injuries were based on factual medical information.

Can I seek both economic and noneconomic damages in my case?

Yes, you can combine both economic and noneconomic damages in your car accident case against the defendant. Your car accident lawyer in Woodland Hills, CA can talk with you about how to present your claims, what evidence to gather, and how much you could receive in these two types of damages by taking legal action against the careless driver. 

Thanks to Barry P. Goldberg for their insight into personal injury claims and car accident case noneconomic damages.