Auto accident victims in Illinois face common obstacles in the aftermath of what is often a pivotal moment in their lives. Even the families of those injured can find themselves dealing with the same or even worse circumstances. There are some typical damages that apply in every injury situation, and also some potentially available damages based on the evidence regarding accident causation.
Economic special damages
The initial element of an auto accident injury claim will be economic compensatory demands, and they can be a base line amount when punitive damages are allowed if a case goes to trial before a jury. They are also known as “special” damages because they can the submitted in specified dollar amounts. These damages include items such as medical bills, lost wages when the victim is unable to work, and physical property damage to a vehicle.
Non-economic general damages
General damages are still considered compensatory, but they are not necessarily assessed in exact dollar losses. These are typically allowances for ongoing pain and suffering resulting from accident injuries. General damage claims are also the element that makes the claimant financially whole in as much as it is possible following motor vehicle accidents.
Serious accident injuries with catastrophic results also often include evaluation by a jury for punitive awards following a trial. Illinois car accidents attorneys must prove to a jury that the negligent party was guilty of “gross” negligence by using material case facts associated with the mishap, including any third-party actors such as an employer in a commercial truck accident.
While many accident victims understand the compensatory elements of their claim, it is the general and punitive damages that are often most important. This is also why so many insurance companies want to settle claims quickly.