How Are Victims Compensated in a New York Personal Injury Case?
You may be wondering, how are monetary awards calculated, and what determines how much one can expect to win in a lawsuit for damages in a personal injury case? Read on to learn more about how damages are calculated in a New York claim.
Damages related to your expenses and injuriesWhile money can't always restore your health and future prospects after an accident, personal injury awards are intended to provide sufficient funds to make you whole after an accident. These awards can consist of two types of damages: special and general.
1.) Special damages are those intended to reimburse you for your expenses stemming from a claim, such as any medical bills, costs to replace damaged property, lost wages, and diminished lifetime earning capacity caused by your injuries. Special damages tend to be easy to calculate, since you'll be able to use paystubs and the bills you receive, such as from your doctor or vehicle repair shop, to prove your losses.
2.) General damages are the funds intended to compensate you for injuries that don't carry an objective monetary value and can't be calculated as easily but are nevertheless important. General damages include compensation for things like pain and suffering you endured, any physical disfigurement you suffered, or your reduced quality of life. General damage awards vary based on how severely you were injured in the accident.
Negotiations with the insurer or defendant can make a major differenceIf you've been seriously injured in an accident, hiring an attorney to handle your claim can make a critical difference in how much you recover. Since general damages are not based on any objective measure, the award can be determined by the support from case law and the skills of the negotiator advocating for the victim. An insurer may insist that general damages are calculated strictly by using a formula based on a percentage of your special damages award. However, there is no law stating that damages must follow this pattern, and a skilled personal injury attorney can advocate for the full amount you deserve when commonly-used formulas won't leave you whole.