Whenever someone talks about an injury due to a car accident, the conversations usually revolve around physical injuries, like someone breaking their hand, someone suffering a burn, etc. People may even discuss the property damage aspect of a car accident, as it is quite common. However, there is one category of damage that victims rarely talk about.
This is mainly because non-economic losses are not quantifiable. This makes calculating non-economic damages an almost impossible task. Though difficult to calculate, non-economic damages account for a major portion of any car accident settlement.
This article focuses on this topic. It talks about the different non-economic losses a victim can seek compensation for in a car accident case.
The following losses are categorized under non-economic losses:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Disability and disfigurement
We'll discuss each loss in the sections below.
Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering comes under non-economic loss and their intensity varies from person to person. It is normal for victims to suffer some kind of injury after a car accident. However, the more severe injuries take time to heal. Even after healing, the injury may still cause some kind of discomfort in the victim's life.
The discomfort the victims suffer from, like an aching elbow every time they lift something, is categorized under pain and suffering. The victim will have to produce testimonials from certified medical professionals to prove how much the pain interferes with their everyday activities.
Most victims are often so focused on the physical aspect of car accidents that they completely forget about the emotional aspect. After a car accident, the victim may develop a fear of driving. Their behavior or outlook on life may change. Sometimes, they may even experience flashbacks about the accident.
All the conditions mentioned above fall under emotional distress. In this case, statements from a qualified therapist are considered evidence.
Loss of Consortium
Loss of consortium is a type of non-economic loss that is usually awarded to the family members of the victims. Car accidents are traumatic events that cause serious suffering. They sometimes take lives as well.
Losing a family member in a car accident deprives the survivors of the affection and love offered by the family member. When the family member is a partner or spouse, it robs the survivor(s) of companionship and intimacy.
The examples mentioned above are valid grounds for seeking compensation under loss of consortium.
Loss of Enjoyment of Life
This loss covers both the physical and emotional aspects of a car accident. The injuries a victim suffers may force them to stop partaking in activities that they once used to. For instance, a severe knee injury to someone who enjoys rock climbing can be emotionally devastating. The same applies to victims who suffer from depression after a car accident.
Car accident victims who suffer from a diminished quality of life or are unable to participate in activities that they used to enjoy can claim compensation under non-economic losses.
Disability or Disfigurement
Disabilities and disfigurements have some of the highest compensation amounts. This is because they have a permanent impact on a person's life.
A physical disability prevents the victim from applying for certain jobs and doesn't allow them to participate in sports activities, among other serious consequences.
A disfigurement, on the other hand, severely affects the victim's appearance and confidence. Disfigured victims may avoid social gatherings due to fear of ridicule, which has adverse effects on their emotional well-being.
The compensation for both of these conditions is covered under non-economic losses.
Car accident victims suffer from a range of physical and emotional injuries. While physical injuries can be easily calculated, emotional ones are hard to quantify.
An experienced car accident lawyer will provide all the assistance you need to prove the losses you've suffered in an accident, both economic and non-economic. They'll also make sure you receive fair compensation to get your life back on track.