Types of Damages in a Personal Injury Lawsuit
North Carolina personal injury victims can collect payment of several different types of damages, including:
- Past Medical Expenses – With proper medical evidence, you can collect full payment for all medical charges incurred from the time of your accident up to the date of your settlement or your trial.
- Future Medical Expenses – If your injuries are permanent or lasting, we will help to secure medical opinions to document and confirm all future medical needs. This allows you to collect for all anticipated medical needs that you might require for the balance of your life.
- Lost Wages & Income – Lost pay during the medical recovery can be collected, even if your employer provides paid sick leave. If you cannot return to the same line of work due to your injuries, you can also collect for all future lost earning capacity. Also, if your injuries result in permanent incapacity such that you will not be able to work until the age of retirement, you can also collect for “lost work life expectancy.” This is payment for forced early retirement due to injury or lost physical ability.
- Home Modifications and Other Medical Devices – If injury necessitates modification of the victim’s home or workplace to adapt to disability, these expenses should be paid by the responsible driver and their insurance carriers.
- Emotional Hardship – Physical injuries often cause stress, sleep loss and anxiety which can lead to emotional instability or depression. If medical care is required, the victim can collect for related medical and psychological care and additional payment for emotional suffering.
- General Damages/Pain & Suffering – North Carolina law provides that a personal injury victim is entitled to cash payment to compensate them for pain and suffering associated with being injured. Your personal injury lawyer will look to your case and to verdicts in similar cases to determine how much you should collect through a fair injury claim settlement.
- Punitive Damages – In cases involving intentional misconduct or willful & wanton misconduct, the victim can also collect punitive damages. This is extra compensation paid to the victim and charged against the guilty parties as punishment for severely wrongful and dangerous conduct.
Contributory Negligence in North Carolina
North Carolina is one of very few states that follow the pure contributory negligence system, meaning that if the defendant is able to prove that the plaintiff was in any way responsible for the accident and his attendant injuries, he will be unable to collect any money damages or bring any insurance claims relating to the accident. Thus, you must be entirely innocent in North Carolina to collect money damages for personal injury.
There are several exceptions to the contributory system, however, including the doctrine of last clear chance, the rescuer doctrine, claims for willful and wanton conduct, and in cases involving the contributory negligence of minors.
Contact Our Skilled Raleigh Personal Injury Attorneys Today
Were you injured in a car or truck accident, and are wondering about the damages you might be entitled to collect payment for? Before accepting an insurance adjuster’s valuation of your claim, you should discuss your situation with an experienced North Carolina personal injury lawyer first. Contact former insurance defense lawyer Carl Nagle today to discover what the insurance company truly owes you. With offices in Raleigh, Winston Salem, and five other cities, our statewide injury law practice can help you to immediately collect full payment for all of the damages you are legally entitled to.