As we explained in an earlier blog, when you have been hurt because of someone else’s negligence and have filed a personal injury claim, the most common types of damages available to you are compensatory damages, designed to make you whole for any actual losses or injury you have suffered. Compensatory damages, though, can further be subdivided into economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are those tangible, essentially out of pocket losses you incur, which can typically be pretty clear cut and easy to calculate. Economic damages generally include:
- Lost income—Any earnings not covered by workers’ compensation, disability insurance or some other source
- Unreimbursed medical costs—Any medical expenses, both now and projected, that are not paid for or reimbursed by an insurer
- Damage to personal property—The value of a motor vehicle or other personal property damaged or destroyed in the accident
Economic damages are typically calculated based on documentary evidence. For example, lost wages would be calculated by taking the injured party’s weekly wage and multiplying it by the amount of weeks the person is unable to work.
These are other actual, but less definitive or tangible, losses. Accordingly, it can be much more difficult to determine the actual measure of non-economic damages. Examples of non-economic damages include:
- Physical pain and suffering resulting from your injuries
- Loss of consortium—the ability to be intimate with your spouse or partner
- Loss of society or companionship with a family member (this is typically more common in a wrongful death action)
Non-economic damages are customarily established through the use of expert witnesses, such as economists.
Contact the Law Office of Howard D. Popper, P.C.
Send us an e-mail or call us at 973-993-8787 to set up a free initial consultation. We have office locations in Morristown and Newton, but will visit you in your home or the hospital, if necessary.
We take all personal injury claims on a contingency basis. You will not incur legal fees unless attorney Popper recovers compensation for your losses.