Non-Economic Damages In Personal Injury Claims In California
The role of damages in Personal Injury Claims is to compensate the victim for all the losses they've incurred due to an accident. Damages include the obvious losses like lost salary, damaged property, and medical bills.
However, getting into an accident can cause a lot of intangible problems, such as the loss of a loved one, emotional distress, and psychological stress. So, how do you compute for that?
Here's a quick guide on Non-Economic Damages in California:
What Are Non-Economic Damages In Personal Injury Claims?
Paying for your car, medical bills, and rehab is not enough for some harrowing accidents. After all, what is the right amount to compensate a burn victim whose face has been permanently damaged? What is the appropriate compensation for bereaved parents of a child lost in a vehicle accident? How do you relieve the struggle of a traumatized survivor who might need therapy for a long time?
Non-economic damages are notoriously difficult for judges and juries to come up with. In addition, they can vary significantly from case to case. This is why it is vital to have a prescreened Burbank Personal Injury Attorney who can successfully present and argue for your non-economic losses.
The term "non-economic damages" refers to a category of damages that aren't based on charges, expenses, or losses that can be quantified.
They cover a wide range of very real losses caused by personal injuries, including:
Bodily pain and suffering
Loss of enjoyment of life
Damage to family or spouse relationships
Personal injuries can result in physical, psychological, spiritual injuries.
What Are Pain And Suffering Damages In Burbank, California?
In California, there is no set formula for determining pain and suffering or any non-economic damages. Instead, the jury must consider the evidence, and a reasonable, common-sense value must be determined.
The following are the factors considered in awarding non-economic damages:
The duration (and potential recovery time) of the injuries
The severity of a person's injuries
The degree to which the injuries affect the person's life
The degree to which the injuries affect the family members' life
What it takes for a victim's full recovery from the injury or loss (including psychological recovery)
That said, you need to work closely with your Burbank Personal Injury Lawyer. This is the best way to build a solid case and get the compensation you deserve.
Is There A Limit To Non-Economic Damages?
Generally, there is no limit—except one specific case.
Medical malpractice cases are limited to $250,000 in non-economic damages under California law.
However, in all other personal injury cases, a plaintiff who exhibits sufficient proof of pain and suffering and other non-economic damages has no limit on the amount of compensation that can be awarded.
Consult a prescreened Burbank Personal Injury Attorney to help you sort things out.
What Are Punitive Damages In California?
In California, punitive damages (sometimes known as "exemplary damages") are a distinct category of non-economic damages.
Unlike other non-economic damages, punitive damages are intended to reimburse personal injury victims for the harms they have endured. In addition, they are designed to punish the person or group who injured the plaintiff and to deter similar detrimental behavior in the future, as their name implies.
Under California law, punitive damages may be granted "when the defendant has been proven guilty of oppression, fraud, or malice by clear and convincing evidence." What exactly does the law intend when it uses those terms? It signifies that the defendant has done one of the following:
Intended to cause harm to the plaintiff
Willfully and knowingly ignored plaintiff's rights and safety
Intentionally subjected the plaintiff to cruel and inhumane treatment in violation of their rights
Deliberately misled the plaintiff
Punitive damages in California have no set limit. Still, they must be proportional to the amount of economic and non-economic compensatory damages awarded by the jury. An expert Burbank Personal Injury Attorney can advise you on whether or not punitive damages are suitable in your case.
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