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What Damages Can Be Recovered After a Car Accident?

December 26, 2023 Legal Team

If you’re involved in a car accident and sustain injuries due to someone else’s negligence, it’s essential for you to know what kind of compensation is available. Damages in personal injury law refer to the physical, emotional, or financial losses that the injured person endured as a result of another party’s carelessness. Understanding these different forms can help ensure rightful compensation while drawing some semblance of closure during this challenging period.

What Damages Can Be Recovered After a Car Accident

Medical Expenses Can Be Recovered 

In the aftermath of an auto accident, medical expenses often constitute major immediate and future economic burdens. Such costs may range from emergency room visits to imaging and tests, surgeries, therapist appointments, and more.

As part of your Arizona personal injury claim after a crash, you’re allowed to recover both past and ongoing/current medical expenses.

Lost Income After an Accident

One of the primary impacts you might experience following a car accident is lost income. Serious injuries can make it impossible for you to continue working your job temporarily – or sometimes permanently.

The wages that were missed during your recovery, as well as ongoing and projected losses, can be recovered. This can include lost benefits, bonuses, and unusable vacation or sick days.

Loss of Earning Capacity

Additionally, if your injuries prevent you from returning to work in the same capacity as before, you’re entitled to claim for loss of earning capacity. This type of compensation is projected by evaluating the difference between what you were earning prior to the accident and what your post-accident wages will look like.

Other Out-of-Pocket Expenses

The expenses you incur following an accident aren’t always strictly medical or related to lost income. Sometimes, injuries can demand additional help around your home – such as requiring a housekeeper or childcare services if you’re no longer able to manage these responsibilities. 

Additionally, transportation costs associated with medical appointments can quickly add up. 

Keep track of all these out-of-pocket expenses as you may be able to recoup them through a legal claim.

Physical Pain and Suffering

Injuries from a car accident often carry physical pain extending beyond immediate harm and pain. This could persist for weeks, months, or even years, significantly impacting your life. Compensation can often be recovered for this.

Loss of Enjoyment of Life

A car crash can significantly restrict your lifestyle, limiting the ability to pursue hobbies or activities you previously enjoyed. The reduction of pleasure or contentment in life you experience due to these limitations can be accounted for in your legal claim.

Psychological Trauma

Beyond physical injuries, the trauma of an accident can inflict serious psychological damage that includes conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and phobias related to driving or vehicles. You can recover compensation for these injuries.

Scarring and Disfigurement

Unfortunately, some car accidents result in injuries that are so severe they leave the victim disfigured or with noticeable scarring. 

Physical changes of this nature often cause emotional distress in addition to physical pain. It can lead to feelings of embarrassment, shame, and self-esteem issues, significantly affecting a person’s life. These damages recognize the deep-seated ramifications of this type of injury.

Punitive Damages

While relatively rare in personal injury claims, punitive damages can come into play when the defendant’s actions that led to the accident are proven to be done with an “evil hand or evil mind.

Unlike more common forms of compensation which aim to reimburse victims for their loss, punitive damages are awarded to punish the defendant and discourage similar behavior in the future.

The aftermath of a car accident can be overwhelming and stressful, especially when dealing with physical injuries, emotional trauma, lost wages, and growing medical bills. Fortunately, you never have to handle this situation alone. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with our experienced Phoenix car accident lawyers.