Determining the Maximum Compensation Available Based on Your Accident-Related Losses
One of the most common questions asked after a car accident is: “how much is my claim worth?” While no two cases are exactly the same, it is important to consult with an attorney about the potential value of your case. Failing to seek the right amount of damages could result in you not getting fair and full compensation after a car accident.
At Coletrane & Messersmith, we help people who have been injured or lost a loved one in car accidents throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. Our experienced legal team knows how to value claims and maximize damages on behalf of our clients. If you were injured in a car accident, contact our office at (757) 223-4455 to book your free consultation.
Types of Damages in a Virginia Car Accident
There are two basic types of damages that may be awarded after a car accident: compensatory damages and punitive damages.
- Compensatory damages are those that compensate a plaintiff for their losses. They generally fall into two categories: economic losses and non-economic losses.
- Punitive damages are those that punish the wrongdoer for their careless or reckless act. One of the most common instances where a person is awarded punitive damages after a car accident is if the driver that caused the accident was intoxicated.
In order to be awarded punitive damages after a drunk driving accident, the evidence must show that the defendant acted with malice or the conduct was so “willful or wanton as to show a conscious disregard for the rights of others.” Virginia places a limitation (or cap) on the amount that can be awarded for punitive damages.
Economic vs. Non-Economic Losses After a Car Crash
Economic damages are fairly straightforward to calculate. They are generally any out-of-pocket or actual losses related to your accident and injury. Economic damages are designed to reimburse you for any expenses or costs that you have to pay after your accident or as a result of your injuries.
Common economic damages include compensation for:
- Medical bills and hospital expenses
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Property damage
- Future medical treatment such as physical therapy and rehabilitation
- Funeral expenses (in the event of wrongful death)
- Other monetary expenses
Non-economic damages are often harder to calculate. These are general damages that may not have a specific, quantifiable amount associated with them. Non-economic damages may include compensation for physical pain and suffering, mental anguish, emotional distress, loss of love and companionship, loss of enjoyment of life, and more.
Injured in a Car Accident? Get Help Now.
At Coletrane & Messersmith, we have recovered millions on behalf of our clients. We are highly trained trial lawyers with proven results. Contact our office today if you were injured or lost a loved one in a car accident.
We offer experienced, aggressive representation for injured parties in Newport News, Hampton, Hampton Roads, and all surrounding communities. Get the personalized service you need and deserve. There are never any fees unless we win. Call (757) 223-4455 to get started.