Were you recently injured in a car accident that wasn’t your fault? If so, you are probably wondering what kind of damages you can receive and how people calculate them.
Damages in a personal injury claim are in two different categories: economic and non-economic.
Economic damages consist of quantifiable costs related to your injuries. This includes lost wages, medical expenses, and any other expenses related to your injury. Calculating these is easy.
Calculating non-economic damages isn’t as easy. These damages include elements like pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment, and emotional trauma. Such damages are subjectively evaluated by a jury or by an insurance company who is paying out on a policy.
With a lawsuit, compensation for car accident pain and suffering is possible.
Personal Injury Settlement Calculators
Some personal injury attorneys have settlement calculators on their websites, but use them with caution since they’re not accurate.
For instance, if you are an avid tennis player who broke their wrist in a car accident, your loss of enjoyment will be greater than someone who prefers to watch television. You deserve compensation for that loss. Your personal injury attorney’s job is to ensure that fact is considered when it comes time to settle the case.
Pain and suffering works much the same way in a personal injury settlement.
In fact, loss of enjoyment and emotional trauma are both kinds of pain and suffering. Those who suffer serious injuries in a car accident may have difficulty sleeping, flashbacks of the incident, and be in physical pain. When these are all caused by the negligence of another driver, that driver is liable for those damages too.
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The Role of Insurance Companies
In Texas and New Mexico, an individual’s insurance company pays for the majority of the settlement.
Both states require individuals to carry a minimum liability insurance. The at-fault party’s insurance company will max out in serious car accidents. In both states, however, an injured driver can sue that at-fault driver directly.
In some cases, the at-fault driver may not have significant funds on which to draw, which means you may be out of luck.
However, those with assets who carry liability insurance tend to have very high policy limits as a way to shield their assets. Their insurance companies, however, will generally not offer you much in the way of recovery for non-economic damages.
That’s why you must have a New Mexico car accident attorney litigate your claim. Your attorney will prepare your case in the event that the insurance company wants to argue in front of a jury.
Typically, they don’t. Remember that they also have a responsibility to the policyholder to ensure the best possible outcome for them.
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