Types Of Damages In Michigan Personal Injury Cases

Metro Detroit Personal Injury Lawyer

In Michigan personal injury cases, there are two types of damages (economic damages and non-economic damages) that an accident victim can recover after they have suffered injuries as a result of someone else's negligence. Achieving a settlement that fairly compensates an accident victim is predicated on precisely determining the amount of economic and non-economic damages her or she has suffered. 

What Are Economic Damages In Michigan Personal Injury Cases? 

Economic Damages refers to compensation for objectively verifiable monetary loses an accident victim has suffered. Examples of these monetary losses include medical expenses, such as co-pays, prescription costs, over-the-counter medications, and any other expense related to treatment. This also includes mileage to and from doctors' offices, as well as any replacement services you require since your injury. For instance, if you normally clean your house yourself, but due to your injury are unable to do so, the money you have to pay someone else to do it is considered an economic damage.

Lost wages and lost earning capacity are also economic damages. Lost wage and lost earning capacity are two separate types of damages. Lost wages refers to the actual amount of money you lost due not being able to work while injured. Lost earning capacity refers to a loss in your potential to earn a certain wage. This usually comes into play when a child or adult suffers a permanent injury that will limit their future earning ability. For instance, a baby born with a permanent brain disorder as a result of a physician's negligence would not have actual lost wages, but would certainly have a diminished earning capacity. 

Computing economic damages requires keeping careful track of all the expenses you incurred as a result of your injury. If you are unsure whether an expense qualifies as an accident related expense, ask your attorney. Once you compile the list of actual expenses and wages lost due to the accident, simply add the numbers and you have your economic damages. Assessing lost earning capacity is more complicated, and sometimes requires assistance of an expert witness, such as an economist or life care planner. 

What Are Non-Economic Damages In Michigan Personal Injury Cases? 

Non-Economic Damages refers to damages for physical and emotional pain and suffering. Non-economic damages are more complicated than economic damages, as they do not lend themselves to a precise monetary value. What is the value of post-traumatic stress disorder after a dog bite attack? How do you quantify the pain you experienced after suffering a broken leg in a car accident or slip and fall accident?

Analyzing non-economic damages requires researching past jury verdicts and settlements in similar cases to provide a basis for the loss. Experienced personal injury attorneys know how to calculate non-economic damages, and can account  for subtle yet important factors like venue (county in which the case would be filed) and any comparative fault on behalf of the injured party.

Fairly and accurately assessing your economic and non-economic damages requires careful examination of the facts and circumstances of your case. If you have questions about economic or non-economic damages in your potential personal injury case, you should contact an experienced Michigan personal injury attorney.

 Metro Detroit Injury Lawyers is a Bloomfield Hills, Michigan law firm practicing personal injury law. Contact us today at 248-430-8929 for a free consultation and evaluation of your case, with no obligation.