What Damages Can I Collect for a Truck Accident?
When an accident involving a commercial truck occurs, there will likely be an extensive investigation into the incident. It is imperative for any injury and property damage victims to be able to recover compensation if the incident was caused by the negligence of a truck driver or trucking company. Here, we want to explain what types of damages may be available after these incidents occur.
Economic Damages After a Truck Accident in Oregon
The aftermath of an Oregon truck accident is bound to leave victims with a plethora of expenses. Economic damages seek to provide compensation for all calculable costs a person sustains after these incidents occur. We say that these are calculable because our team will gather any receipts, bills, estimates, and invoices that the Portland truck accident victim receives or expects to receive after the incident.
Some of the most common types of economic damages associated with a truck accident include the following:
- Emergency medical expenses
- Any ongoing doctor or hospital visits
- Physical therapy and rehabilitation costs
- Prescription medication or medical device expenses
- Property damage expenses
- The cost of a rental vehicle
- Various types of out-of-pocket household expenses
- Lost current and future wages caused by the injury, recovery, or disability
The total amount of economic damages received will depend on a variety of factors, including current bills or invoices received, as well as future expected expenses. These future expenses can be calculated by speaking to and obtaining expert witness statements from medical and economic professionals.
Non-Economic Damages After a Truck Accident in Oregon
Non-economic damages are certainly different than the economic damages mentioned above. The main difference is that these types of damages are typically not as calculable as the economic damages. However, just because they are not as calculable does not mean they should be forgotten. Economic damages are associated with the immeasurable pain and suffering a person endures as a result of a truck accident. For example, a truck accident lawyer will work to recover compensation for a victim’s:
- Emotional and psychological distress caused by the incident and the recovery
- Physical pain and suffering caused by the injury and any ongoing disability
- Loss of quality or loss of enjoyment of life caused by injuries and ongoing disability
- Loss of consortium damages for a spouse or partner
There are various accepted methods for calculating non-economic damages. One of these methods is called a “multiplier,” and this means an attorney will add up all of the economic damages associated with the case and then take that total and multiply it by a set number (often a number ranging from 1.5 to 5). For example, if a person sustains $300,000 worth of economic damages, an attorney could use a multiplier of “three” to reach a non-economic damage total of $900,000.
Punitive Damages for Oregon Truck Accidents
When examining ORS 31.730, we can see that punitive damages are reserved for situations where an individual acts with malice or extreme indifference to the safety of others, even after knowing that their actions are likely to cause harm to others. These types of damages are intended as a punishment to the defendant and as a deterrent to others who may have thought to act in the same way. These damages have no bearing on whether or not a person receives economic or non-economic damages, and 70% of punitive damages go to the state of Oregon.