If you sustained an injury that was caused by the negligent actions of
another party, you can pursue compensation through a personal injury lawsuit.
If successful, you could recover various types of damages, which are determined
on a case-by-case basis. Personal injury awards generally consist of two
types of damages – compensatory damages and punitive damages.
Here is what you need to know about these two different categories of damages
in a personal injury lawsuit:
Compensatory damages: These types of damages are intended to put the victim in the same position
he or she would have been in had the incident never occurred. To accomplish
this, a dollar amount must be placed on the victim’s injuries. Within
the category of compensatory damages, there are two more sub-categories:
monetary losses and non-monetary losses.
Monetary losses encompass any financial losses that are associated with the accident,
such as medical expenses, the costs of living with a disability, lost
wages, having to repair or replace property, and funeral expenses. The
severity of the injury will play a role in determining compensation. For
example, if an injury caused permanent disability that would require round-the-clock
care for life, this would become result in a much higher award to ensure
the injury victim does not have to bear the burden of this cost. If the
injured victim later dies as a result of the injury, the family of that
victim might be able to recover the costs of any funeral expenses.
Non-monetary losses tend to be more difficult to calculate and, as such, these damages can
vary significantly from case to case. These types of damages include pain
and suffering, such as emotional distress, frustration, fear, anger, loss
of enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium. Spouses of personal injury
victims might also receive damages for the loss of emotional and intangible
elements of a marriage, including sexual relations and loss of affection.
Punitive damages: Unlike the aforementioned damages, which are designed to compensate the
victim, punitive damages are meant to punish the defendant for inflicting
harm upon the victim and to deter others from acting similarly. These
types of damages are not awarded in every case. Punitive damages are only
applied when the behavior of the defendant is particularly egregious.
Additionally, to prevent excessive punitive damage awards, the court usually
limits it to less than ten times the amount of one’s compensatory damages.
Alexandria Personal Injury Attorney in Virginia
If you or a loved one was injured by the negligent or careless actions
of another party, you might be entitled to receive compensation by filing
a claim against them. At The Barrera Law Firm, PLLC, our skilled team
of Virginia personal injury attorneys have guided thousands of injured
individuals throughout the claims-filing process and obtained countless
successful results. Backed by three decades of legal experience, you can
be confident in our firm’s ability to effectively represent you
no matter how complex your case might be.
Contact our office today at
(571) 290-2390 to schedule a free case evaluation with a knowledgeable member of our