If you are injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongful conduct, you may bring a claim or file a lawsuit to recover for losses caused by that accident. These losses can come in the form of past and future medical expenses, past and future lost wages or lost earnings ability, and pain and suffering that is incurred from the initial accident and for the remainder of your life.
In addition, under some circumstances, family members such as your spouse, children, or parents can also make claims for injuries or death arising from your accident. Understanding damages is an important part of this legal process.
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If you’ve been injured by the negligence of others, call Melbourne, Florida injury attorney Clay Morgan today for a FREE telephone consultation to discuss the specifics of your case: 321-951-3400.
Past and Future Medical and Rehabilitative Expenses
An injured person is entitled to recover the reasonable value of medical care and treatment for injuries caused by someone else’s negligence. While calculating the cost of past medical treatment is relatively easy, it is often made more difficult by amounts that have been paid by health insurance, Medicare, Medicaid and insurance write-offs, all of which may require reductions in those past medical costs or require you to repay a portion of the moneys claimed for those damages to the actual carriers that paid the bills. Determining a value for your future medical needs will be even more difficult. Medical experts who can provide expert opinions as to your need for future medical treatment and the costs associated with that treatment are required. You also will have to contend with insurance carriers and defendants hiring their own medical experts in order to convince a jury that your past and future medical expenses are less than what you believe should be awarded. Compensation for past and future medical needs can be a large part of the recovery you receive, either from a negotiated settlement, or through a verdict after trial and you need experienced legal counsel to assist in calculating and presenting these damages on your behalf.
Lost Earnings and Lost Capacity to Earn
If you are injured in an accident, the person who caused your injuries must reimburse you for wages, or earnings, you lost due to those injuries, and for earnings you will lose in the future. If the nature of your injuries diminishes your ability to earn, or your ability to advance in your career, those losses can be substantial. Most people believe that the amount you are entitled to recover for past lost wages is relatively easy to calculate, however, rest assured that the opposing party will certainly be arguing that those wages are inflated. Determining an award for your loss of future earnings and earnings capacity will be much more complex. You will need to hire experts in various medical, occupational, and actuarial fields to help you determine medically how your job performance will be affected and whether you can continue in your chosen profession. Occupational experts will be needed to guide a jury on what jobs you may be able to obtain with your skill set and medical restrictions. Actuarial experts will be required to put numbers to the future losses for a jury and assist in proving the appropriate amount. The value of your past and future lost wage claim can be a significant portion of your claim and one that you cannot afford to minimize.
Pain and Suffering
If you are injured due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to an award for your pain and suffering, disability or physical impairment, disfigurement, mental anguish, inconvenience, and loss of capacity for the enjoyment of life. The pain and suffering, mental anguish and loss of capacity for enjoyment of life are perhaps the most difficult damages for a jury to understand because Florida laws recognize that the there is no exact standard for measuring their value. These damages can be a sizable part of your negligence claim and require a skilled litigator to present your testimony and the testimony of your co-workers, friends, family members, medical providers and experts in combination to provide the jury with a picture of the suffering that you endured and will endure in the future as a result of the opposing parties negligence.
At Morgan & Barbary, our attorneys understand how important it is that you are fully compensated for the injuries and damages you suffer in an accident.