Damages In Virginia Truck Accident Cases
The term damages is defined by the law to encompass all of the elements that a person can claim when they have been hurt in a truck accident that was not their fault. Damages take two distinct forms: economic damages, and non-economic damages. Below, we will explain the difference, and how to make these claims.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a collision involving a truck, then you need to speak to an experienced Virginia truck accident lawyer to see what kind of damages you can get compensation for, and where that compensation is going to come from.
What are Economic Damages?
Economic damages are items that are objective, and verifiable. They are concrete. They possess a fixed financial valuation that can be documented and reviewed.
Here are some examples of quantifiable economic damages
Inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation
Loss of income.
What are Non-economic Damages?
Non-economic damages are not immediately quantifiable. This means that you cannot simply look at a hospital bill, and use a mathematical formula to determine what the pain and suffering is for a three-day hospital stay. Non-economic damages are generally subjective.
Pain and suffering is the most common kind of non-economic damage. There is no law book or treatise or court case that says that a broken arm is worth X, and neck pain is worth Y. Non-economic damages have to be proven, usually through the testimony of people who know the injured person, and who can testify about how the accident, and the injuries resulting from that accident, have impacted that person's life.
What are Punitive Damages?
In Virginia, it is possible to obtain punitive damages in an accident case, but only under very narrow circumstances. Punitive damages specifically seek to do two things: 1) to punish the at-fault person for engaging in dangerous, reckless, or illegal conduct, and 2) to deter other people from doing the same thing in the future. However, punitive damages are not recoverable in all accidents.
You can get punitive damages if the at-fault party was driving under the influence. For example, if the driver of the truck that caused your accident had been using drugs, or drinking, then you may have a claim if the level of intoxication meet the requirements in the law (below).
Attorney Joseph Blaszkow was one of the first Virginia trial lawyers to seek and receive punitive damages for an injured client, after a drunk driving crash.
Liability vs Damages vs Insurance
There is an unfortunate reality in car accident law. Sometimes people have very serious injuries, and the negligence of the tortfeasor (person who caused the accident) is unmistakable. However, that tortfeasor may not have adequate insurance coverage to compensate the injured person. When this happens, a skilled car accident law firm is going to look for any additional policies of coverage, and also explore a potential underinsured motorist claim.
Truck accidents, thankfully, do not often have this hurdle. Trucks are required to have minimum insurance levels depending on the freight that they are hauling. So there is often, at a minimum, $750,000 of insurance coverage available.
Unfortunately, when one of these truck accidents results in a fatality, no amount of compensation can fully bring your loved one back. But we will investigate completely, to get all of the compensation from all of the applicable policies that are available, to get you and your loved ones as much as possible.
Call a Virginia Truck Accident Lawyer
Truck accidents in Virginia result in serious damages, of property and health. If you have an injured in a truck accident that was not your fault, your life may have been turned completely upside down. If you, or a loved one, have been involved in a Virginia truck crash, call an experienced personal injury lawyer right away. We will begin our investigation, and work your case hard from the very beginning, to get you and your family all of the compensation that you deserve. Get Justice with Joe and call Blaszkow Legal: 703-879-5910
Virginia Law on Punitive Damages in Drunk Driving Cases: https://law.lis.virginia.gov/vacode/title8.01/chapter3/section8.01-44.5/