Car accident injuries may cause many kinds of harm, well beyond physical injuries and property damage. In addition to these, an accident may cause a victim to experience many kinds of personal, internal suffering that may also justify compensation, depending on the victim's experience.
If you're considering any kind of settlement in your own car accident injury claim, or if you recently experienced an accident and began the process of assembling your claim, make sure that any settlement properly compensates you not only for your physical injuries, property losses and lost income. You also want to pay attention to the portion of the settlement that addresses your general suffering.
General damages include many different kinds of discomfort and suffering, which may prove difficult to quantify and value. Make sure that you properly consider the toll that your accident takes on your overall quality of life as you prepare your claim and negotiate a fair resolution.
Surviving a car accident may mean that you experience some pain and discomfort for a matter of days, or it may means many months of recovery time, if your injuries are numerous or particularly severe.
Courts may consider many different kinds of general damages, such as
- Mental anguish
- Physical loss, impairment or disfigurement
- General pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of reputation, enjoyment or companionship
These forms of loss, while difficult to quantify, are certainly valid and deserve fair consideration alongside your more concrete losses. Just because they are more difficult to assess and compensate does not mean these losses are any less real.
Seeking fair compensation for general damages
The difficult aspect of any claim involving general damages is properly valuing these losses. With hospital bills and property damage, there is plenty to argue over, but ultimately these costs are relatively simple to quantify using hospital and vehicle repair bills, or other documentation.
With general damages, it is important to find ways to document your losses. This may require some thinking outside of the box and creating your own documentation. You may create written records of your general suffering, pictures and video footage of any visible effects of the accident, and may also include the input of others in your life who can vouch for your experience and the difficulties that your circumstances.
Do not overlook this important aspect of your injury claim as you work towards recovery. The care you take in building this claim and the tools you use to pursue a fair resolution may greatly affect the rights and protections that you enjoy and the size of your compensation award.