This article is by Steve Raiser, a premier NYC divorce attorney. As part of a personal injury lawsuit, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and other costs related to your injuries. While the amount that you may be entitled to is hard to determine until the matter has been resolved, there are several types of compensation that you can expect to receive if you win your case.
Expect Compensation for Medical Bills and Related Costs
As a general rule, you are entitled to compensation for the cost of staying in a hospital, going to physical therapy or having to buy a wheelchair. You may also be compensated for the cost of ongoing treatment such as future surgeries, physical therapy or medication to control symptoms of your injury. It may also be possible to get paid for any modifications that you have to make to your home or car after an accident.
Lost Wages and Future Earnings Are Generally Included
If you missed work because you had to see a doctor or go to physical therapy, you will be reimbursed for the time that you missed. It may also be possible to be reimbursed for lost future earnings because you were unable to go back to work. Lost earnings may be awarded on a partial basis if you are able to go back to work on a limited basis or find work that pays less than your old job paid. The amount you receive for lost earnings may take into account whether you were in line for promotions to higher paying jobs or were entitled to future raises in pay.
Punitive Damages May Be Awarded
In addition to any actual damages that you sustained, a jury may add punitive damages to your final financial award. Punitive damages are used to hold a company or person generally responsible for its role in causing your injuries. For instance, if a corporation knew that it was using substandard building materials or made products that weren’t up to quality standards, a jury could send a message through punitive damages. If a doctor hurt you by misdiagnosing an illness or because of a medication error, punitive damages may awarded as well in an effort to prevent future errors from occurring.
Do You Have Kids?
Your award may be increased if you have children or others who depend on your income to survive. For instance, a fund may be created to pay your mortgage or to help pay for your child’s college education if you are unable to do so on your own. This may be in addition to money that can be used to pay for clothes, food or other resources needed to help a minor grow up to be a productive member of society.
What Has the Accident Done to Others?
Permanent injuries that you suffer as the result of an accident could lead to a lower quality of life. For instance, you may not be able to play with your kids, play with your pets or have any sort of intimate time with your spouse. Because of this, your family may be entitled to compensation in addition to whatever you get from the person who hurt you. Compensation may be provided to help others take care of you if you are in a coma or otherwise cannot care for yourself.
It is possible to receive hundreds of thousands if not millions of dollars in a personal injury case. However, that depends on the circumstances in your case such as the type of treatment necessary to recover from your injuries and whether or not you could return to work. Before filing a personal injury lawsuit, it may be in your best interest to talk with an attorney who may be able to review the case and help you resolve it in your favor.