When you are hurt in an automobile accident, you are generally entitled to two different types of compensation for your damages: non-economic damages and economic damages.
“Negligence” is a legal theory that means that you either did something as a driver that caused an accident to happen, or that you didn’t do something you should have, and that failure to act led directly to the accident happening. If you have been in an accident, it is the responsibility of those at-fault to pay for both injuries and damages to those involved.
When you are hurt in an automobile accident, you are generally entitled to two different types of compensation for your damages: non-economic damages and economic damages. These differ in the respect that one is very concrete and the other is highly subjective – which means it’s more difficult to determine an exact price. Economic damages differ from non-economic damages because they are much easier to calculate.
Non-economic damages include things like pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and emotional distress; these can be very hard to calculate because there is no way to quantify what someone’s suffering is worth since everyone experiences it differently. Economic damages are those that are quantifiable and rigid. They are based on what someone has lost economically due to their injuries and damages.
An example of economic damages would be things like doctor’s bills, therapy bills, or lost wages. Since they can be documented, they are calculated when the injured person submits proof of their treatment, pay stubs, transportation costs, or any other financial documentation of what they suffered due to the accident.
That’s only half of the equation, though. An insurance company will ask for documentation for the treatment that you have received in the form of medical bills and any other concrete losses, and will total them. They will then calculate the amount of your non-economic losses and add the two together to come up with a total. Once that is done, they will offer the injured person a settlement. Once the plaintiff accepts a settlement offer and they sign it, they absolve the insurance company from any further obligation going forward. This is why it is important to know what you are signing and to ensure that you are getting all that you deserve before you sign on the dotted line.
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If you are injured in a car accident in Missouri, it is imperative that you speak with a car accident attorney to help you to calculate what your injuries and damages are worth. Although economic damages are straightforward and easy to prove, non-economic damages are much more subjective, which is why it is a good idea to speak with an experienced attorney before accepting a settlement offer. Call The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. 24/7 at (314) 361-4242 or fill out the contact form below for FREE legal advice.