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What Are the Differences Between Economic and Damages


When you file a personal injury claim, the damages you recover can fall under two different categories – economic and non-economic. Although economic damages are relatively straightforward, generally covering the costs a person incurred as a result of the injury they sustained, non-economic damages are less black and white. That said, it is not uncommon for non-economic damages to be greater than the sum of one’s economic damages.

Understanding the Differences

If your personal injury claim is successful, the sum awarded to you is far from arbitrary. Compensation is designed to make the injured party as whole as possible in more ways than one.

Below are some examples of the economic damages you can recover:

  • Missed wages or lost earning capacity
  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Property loss or damage, such as a totaled vehicle
  • Loss of business opportunities

In most personal injury cases, the injured person’s medical expenses will largely make up the awarded damages. Medical expenses can include anything from hospital visits, medication, physical therapy, and ambulance bills to travel costs associated with having to attend all of your doctor appointments. It is crucial to properly document your injuries to ensure you are appropriately compensated for economic costs associated with your injuries.

Additionally, these are some examples of non-economic damages you can recover:

  • Trauma associated with the accident
  • Pain and suffering
  • Disfigurement or disability
  • Physical impairment
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of companionship

Essentially, non-economic damages cover items that are not tangible. Although pain and suffering do not have a price tag attached to them, there are some factors that are taken into consideration when calculating an award for non-economic damages. The court will look at the severity of the injury, if it is permanent, how long the recovery period is expected to take, and how much the injury will interfere and disrupt the survivor’s life. If a full recovery is unlikely, the injury would be considered catastrophic and eligible for greater damages.

Although people tend to hear about compensation awards for personal injury cases and think the sum is unreasonable, it is important to consider the fact that survivors frequently need extensive medical care, surgeries, pricey medications, or even at-home assistance in severe cases. If victims are not fairly compensated, they can end up footing the bill for the injuries they sustained in an accident that was someone else’s fault.

Speak to a Personal Injury Attorney Today!

If you were injured in an accident caused by another party’s negligence, contact the personal injury team at Paulsen Law Group for exceptional legal representation. Our team has been assisting the wrongfully injured for over 15 years and have a reputation for dedication and excellence. Moreover, we understand this is a difficult time for you, which is why we believe you should take this time to focus on recovering and getting your life back on track. That is why you will not owe us any legal fees until we win your case.

Contact our law firm today at (727) 270-8260 to schedule a free case review with one of our trusted personal injury attorneys.

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