If you pursue a personal injury claim after a truck accident in Washington DC, undoubtedly, you will have many questions. One such question will likely be “How much money will I get for my settlement?” As your Washington DC truck accident lawyer may inform you, many variables are considered when determining the settlement amount. These variables fall into two main groups: (1) general damages, and (2) special damages.
Special damages refer to the measurable costs resulting from of an injury. These costs include such things as medical bills, property damage and lost wages. For example, if an individual’s nose gets broken in a commercial truck accident, a Washington DC truck accident lawyer will consider the costs of the medical care received to treat the break, the time missed from work as one heals from the injury, and the cost of any future medical care such as further surgeries or perhaps a visit to an Ear Nose and Throat specialist if the victim has other difficulties such as breathing issues, or even to a plastic surgeon if there are medical or cosmetic issues.
General damages involve the less tangible aspects of injury. So, while we all accept that a broken nose is painful, there is no empirical measurement of a victim’s physical pain—not everyone experiences pain the same way. That is why pain and suffering as a result of a physical injury is considered under the general damages category. Furthermore, if the claimant suffers an emotional pain such as fear or anxiety, which prevents him from driving again, among other things, that too is considered “pain and suffering,” and categorized as general damage. Because pain is internal, individualized, and harder to quantify, insurance companies argue that the claimant’s pain and suffering is minimal. But, the more a victim can prove pain and suffering, with items such as testimony from loved ones, journal entries and therapy bills, the better chance you have of obtaining a better settlement—one that will compensate a victim fairly. As with special damages, general damages are partly determined by the length of time it takes to recover. So, if a victim is expected to make a full recovery from injury, that settlement will be lower than that of someone whose recovery will stretch into the future.
When seeking compensation from a truck accident in Washington DC, remember that many variables will determine the ultimate value of your claim. Moreover, insurance claims adjusters will attempt to reduce compensation as much as possible. This is why you it is imperative that you consult with a top Washington DC truck accident lawyer when moving forward with a claim. If you wish to learn more, contact Cohen & Cohen PC at 240-297-3201 for a free consultation.