4 Key Types of Compensatory Damages That May Be Awarded in a Personal Injury Lawsuit

If you have been injured in an accident, you may be experiencing some significant changes in your life. These changes may affect your job, your family, and your physical and mental well-being. Often one of the most stressful parts of a personal injury is the expenses that follow these changes. It can be extremely overwhelming in many circumstances.

Thankfully, you can recoup some of these expenses under Oregon law. A monetary award granted by a judge that helps you with these expenses is often referred to as “damages.” There are, generally speaking, two types of damages. Compensatory damages are those that are directly related to your losses. They are designed to compensate you for the harms you have experienced because of the accident. Punitive damages are focused on the wrongdoer; they are awarded as a punishment to the wrongdoer instead of a means to make the victim whole again, and they are awarded much less frequently than compensatory damages.

Some of the most common compensatory damages are explained in detail below.

  1.      Medical expenses.

Medical care can be extremely expensive following an accident. For some, it can severely alter their financial well-being. You can receive damages for the medical expenses you had to pay for any care related to your injury, even if someone else, such as your insurance company, paid for the expenses. Often, however, your health insurance company will assert a lien in your personal injury case so that it can recoup its money used to pay for your health care.

  1.      Lost wages.

While you recover, you are often unable to work. Compensatory damages cover the wages that you would have received if you would have been able to work as usual. You may also be able to collect losses related to the future inability to work as well. For example, if you are unable to go back to the job that you had before the accident because of new physical or mental limitations, you may be able to receive damages for the difference between what you are earning at a new job and what you would have earned at your old job.

  1.      Property damages.

If you were involved in a car accident, for example, you likely have damage to your vehicle as a result of a collision. You can often recover the cost of replacing or fixing your damaged property in a personal injury case. Keep in mind that property damage awards are focused on the cost of replacing property in like condition; you likely will not get a new car out of a personal injury case if the car you were driving was older.

  1.      Pain and Suffering.

You can receive damages for the physical or mental pain and suffering that you had to endure as a result of the accident. Pain and suffering damages are considered a “non-economic” damage because they are not easily quantifiable like lost wages or medical expenses. You can receive pain and suffering damages for both past and future pain and suffering if your accident caused a condition that is expected to continue. Pain and suffering damages are difficult to estimate, and they will vary a great deal depending on the type of case and the seriousness of your injuries.

If you have been involved in an accident, you may be able to collect damages related to your claim. These can help ease the financial burden associated with a personal injury. Contact The Law Offices of Clarke Griffin, LLC to learn how we can help!

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Written by Clarke Griffin