Accidents can lead to the loss of life or pain and suffering. Victims of road accidents that result from the recklessness of other people have the right to sue for compensation. You should hire a legal expert like an Atlanta accident attorney for successful filing and hearing of your compensation claim. Lawyers will also offer the necessary advice and assist in evidence gathering. There are several things you should know before filing a compensation claim after an accident. We will look at them in detail.
Claim for compensation for personal injury
In the best-case scenario, a traffic accident only results in minor body damage. In this case, the injured party has a claim for damages against the person who caused the accident or their vehicle liability insurer to compensate for the pecuniary damage. First of all, this is the claim for payment of repair costs due to the vehicle damaged in the accident.
However, a traffic accident can also result in significant personal injury, i.e., physical damage to those involved in the accident. Then there are claims for damages to compensate for further costs, such as the costs of medical treatment, loss of earnings, and reduced earning capacity. Some of these costs are also borne by your own insurance, such as health insurance or occupational accident insurance, or by your employer. These bodies then claim the damage themselves against the party liable for compensation.
In addition to the costs mentioned for medical treatment, etc., a claim for damages of its own kind can also be considered for the injured party in the event of personal injury: compensation for pain and suffering. This compensates for the immaterial – i.e., non-pecuniary damage – that the injured party suffered due to the accident. This is referred to as the so-called compensatory compensation function for pain and suffering. At the same time, the compensation for pain and suffering also has a so-called satisfaction function with regard to the fact that the debtor owes the injured party satisfaction for what he did to him as a result of the accident.
Amount of compensation for pain and suffering
The injured party is entitled to reasonable compensation in money. What is appropriate is determined on a case-by-case basis. There are no legal requirements for this. However, the courts form a benchmark. This is summarized in compensation tables for pain and suffering and collections of judgments, which show which amounts of damage were awarded for which bodily injuries.
Important criteria for determining compensation for pain and suffering are:
- The extent of immediate injuries, such as broken bones, lacerations, etc.
- Duration of an illness or inability to work
- psychological or social consequences
- (Possible) consequential damage and permanent physical impairments, degree of disability
- possible contributory negligence, which reduces the claim for compensation for pain and suffering
The aforementioned factors give an idea that in individual cases, it is not enough to rely on the offers of the opposing insurance company. Especially in the case of more serious physical damage, which entails several years of treatment with various hospital stays, so that disputes go on for years, it is important to have an overview of the claims to be made for compensation for pain and suffering and other damages to keep.