Are You Eligible for Punitive Damages After an Injury?
When injured victims file personal injury claims, they want to be compensated fairly for their damages and their losses.
For many people, this amount goes beyond the money they need to pay for their medical bills and lost wages. They also need money to compensate them for losses that can’t be easily calculated—i.e., their pain and suffering.
If you’re thinking about filing a personal injury claim, you’ve undoubtedly heard about both types of damages: economic and non-economic. But you also may have heard of a third type of damages: punitive. These damages can be a factor in some cases, but usually only when they go to trial.
And instead of being awarded to compensate victims, they are designed to punish offenders. The victims receive the money and can do with it as they please, but that’s not it’s purpose. For that reason, it’s difficult for victims to negotiate for punitive damages.
Instead, these damages are typically decided in court. They are also usually only ordered when liable parties were extremely reckless, negligent, or acting with malice. An example of a case where punitive damages may come into play is a drunk driver whose BAC was significantly over the legal limit and who had a long history of drunk driving arrests causing a crash that severely injured others.
At Skolrood Law Firm, we can help you understand how much compensation you may be owed and whether punitive damages may be a factor in your claim. Contact our Roanoke auto accident lawyers anytime for a free consultation.