Car crash victims in Nevada can recover economic, non-economic, and possibly even punitive damages by taking legal action against the at-fault party. “Damages” refers to the financial compensation that the victim may obtain from the liable person, either through a trial or an out-of-court settlement.
Types of Car Accident Damages in Nevada
These damages refer to various financial losses a victim suffers because of another party’s negligence. Economic damages in car crash cases include:
Medical bills could be so costly depending on the kind of injuries suffered by a car crash victim. The victim can include the expenses of all justifiable and necessary medical treatment in his or her claim. Some of the medical bills that may form part of a car crash claim include:
- Physicians’ bills
- Ambulance expenses, emergency room costs, and hospital bills
- Costs of counseling and therapy for various crash-related psychological conditions like PTSD, depression, and anxiety.
- Medications, medical supplies, medical devices, and medical equipment
- Home-based personal care or health care
Medical records usually serve as proof of medical costs. Keeping all receipts for medications or supplies bought over the counter can also help the victim obtain compensation for all medical costs.
Loss of Income
A crash victim may miss work due to the crash and injuries sustained. The victim can add any loss of income suffered to the injury claim. He or she can, for instance, include wages, salaries, benefits, bonuses, and commissions.
The victim must provide evidence of his or her income before the crash and evidence of loss of the income after the crash. The victim can obtain copies of pay history alongside a report of missed time from the job from his or her employer.
Loss of Earning Potential
If the car crash victim suffers a catastrophic injury, including a traumatic brain injury, paralysis, or an amputation, he or she may be eligible for future economic damages. If the victim is unable to work due to the injury, he or she may pursue compensation for loss of earning capacity. If the victim’s pay level drops due to the permanent impairment, he or she may recover compensation for a drop in earning capacity.
Other Economic Damages
The victim may suffer other economic damages due to a car crash-related injury. He or she may, for instance, incur transport costs to and from the hospital and assistance with housework or childcare. He or she may also need to modify his or her car or house due to a temporary or permanent impairment. A Las Vegas car accident lawyer can advise the victim on the type of records and receipts he or she needs to obtain to include such expenses in his or her claim.
These damages refer to intangible losses that an individual incurs because of a crash or injury. A jury in a court case is responsible for reviewing non-economic damages. A car crash victim in Las Vegas may qualify for non-economic damages like emotional distress, disfigurement, permanent disabilities, physical pain and suffering, loss of consortium, inconvenience and stress, and loss of affection.
The kind and severity of a car crash injury may affect the value of a victim’s non-economic damages. More severe injuries or those more likely to result in permanent impairments usually make non-economic damages more valuable.
Determining the value of non-economic damages can be hard. A specific method or formula for calculating these benefits doesn’t exist. Juries, insurance companies, and attorneys mostly utilize the multiplier method to determine how much non-economic damages are worth.
The multiplier method involves assigning a number, typically from 1.5 to five, to the claim depending on the victim’s type of injuries and severity. The value of the victim’s non-economic damages is then determined by multiplying that number by the overall amount of his or her non-economic damages.
Punitive Damages in a Car Accident
A victim of a Nevada car crash may also obtain punitive damages in a case where the actions of the liable party are found to be grossly negligent or intentional. These damages aren’t meant to compensate the victim. Instead, they are intended to punish the offender. They are sometimes awarded in impaired driving and drunk driving cases.
Punitive damages are capped depending on the amount of economic and non-economic damages awarded to the victim. If he or she is awarded less than $100,000, then the cap will be $300,000. If the award is more than $100,000, then the punitive damages cap will be three times the value of the award.
To get punitive damages, the victim must win the car accident case, request for such damages, and the jury or the judge must determine that such damages are necessary. The jury will then proceed to calculate the amount to be awarded.