What Are Economic Damages in a Personal Injury Case?

If you or somebody you love has sustained an injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of another individual or entity, you will likely be able to recover compensation for your losses. However, securing this compensation can be challenging, and there are various types of payments that injury victims need to be aware of. Here, we want to specifically discuss economic damages that an injury victim may be able to obtain from the at-fault party. Economic damages will be a critical part of the injury victim’s ability to make as full of a recovery as possible.

Understanding Economic Damages

Economic damages are also referred to as “special damages” when it comes to personal injury claims. These types of damages are what we consider the calculable types of losses that an injury victim incurs as a result of what happened. We call them calculable because we can generally gather various types of evidence such as bills and receipts to correctly add up the victim’s total losses. Some of the most common economic damages available to personal injury victims include the following:

  • Coverage of all hospital bills
  • Payment of doctor’s office visits
  • Coverage of prescription medications
  • Coverage of physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • Lost income if a victim cannot work while they recover
  • General household out-of-pocket costs a victim incurs
  • Property damage expenses

When it comes to economic compensation, there is no set amount of money that a victim receives. The total amount of compensation in these situations will vary depending on the facts and circumstances surrounding each particular claim. In general, we will see that more damages are paid out to those who sustain particularly severe injuries.

How are these Different from Non-Economic Damages?

We do want to explain the difference between economic damages and non-economic damages because this is often a confusing point for those who have sustained an injury. Non-economic damages are also referred to as “general damages,” and these are not as easy to calculate as the damages mentioned above. When discussing non-economic damages, we will find that these are more immeasurable because they deal with various types of pain and suffering an injury victim endures. This can include emotional distress, physical pain and suffering, fear, anxiety, and even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

There are no bills or receipts to add up when calculating non-economic damages. Rather, an attorney will usually take the total economic damages the victim sustained and multiply that by set number (typically 1.5 to 5) to reach a total for non-economic damages.

Will an Attorney be Needed for These Cases?

Personal injury cases often become incredibly challenging for the victim. This is particularly true when calculating the damages that should be awarded. When working to calculate economic damages in a personal injury case, an attorney can use their resources to work with trusted medical and economic professionals. These other professionals can fully evaluate the injury victim and help properly calculate the total current and expected future losses. Additionally, an attorney will handle all negotiations with insurance carriers and at-fault parties in an effort to secure maximum compensation on behalf of their client.