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How Are Damages Measured in an Automobile Accident Case?

If you’ve been hurt in a car crash in Massachusetts, there are legal remedies available to obtain compensation. In general, the value of the damages you can recover depend on the severity of your injuries, the effects of your injuries on your life and the amount of insurance available from all sources.

Damages in personal injury cases fall into two primary categories — economic and non-economic damages. While both are meant to make you whole again after the accident, they differ in kind and in how they are measured.

Economic damages (also known as special damages) are objective and quantifiable losses with a clear dollar value. These damages compensate you for the financial burden your injuries have caused. Common examples include:

  • Medical expenses — These encompass everything from ambulance fees and hospital bills to surgery costs, medication, medical devices and physical therapy sessions. Any reasonable and necessary medical expense incurred due to the accident falls under this category.
  • Lost wages and lost future income — If your injuries prevent you from working or limit your earning capacity, you can claim compensation for lost wages and for expected future income loss. You must provide documentation of your income and medical evidence of the impact of the injuries on your work ability.
  • Replacement services — If you’re unable to perform daily tasks like child care, yard work or cleaning due to your injuries, the cost of hiring someone to fill in can be included in your claim.
  • Accessibility modifications — If your home or vehicle requires modifications to accommodate the limitations caused by your injury, such as wheelchair ramps or grab bars, these costs can also be included.
  • Property damage — Any damage caused to your car or other personal belongings in the accident can be claimed as economic damages.

Non-economic damages (also known as general damages) address the subjective aspects of your experience and the intangible impacts of your injuries. While these damages do not involve out-of-pocket costs, they are no less real and can be significant. Examples include:

  • Pain and suffering, mental anguish and emotional distress — These encompass the physical and emotional pain you experience due to the accident and its aftermath.
  • Loss of quality and enjoyment of life — This refers to the ways your injuries have negatively impacted your ability to engage in activities you previously enjoyed, such as hobbies, sports or quality time with loved ones.
  • Loss of consortium — This represents the harm inflicted on your family relationships due to the accident, such as loss of intimacy or companionship.

An experienced Massachusetts automobile accident lawyer can advise you about the merits of your accident claim, gather evidence in support and take measures to help you receive fair damages for the losses you have incurred.

At Feinberg & Alban PC, our attorneys have for more than 70 years helped victims of car crashes throughout Greater Boston get the optimal compensation for their injuries. Call us at 617-232-5950 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation.

Feinberg & Alban, P.C. fervently protects your rights
  • The Boston firm of Feinberg & Alban, P.C. specializes its practice in the area of personal injury.

    The attorneys serve the entire state of Massachusetts in addition to affiliating with lawyers in other states to handle cases outside of Massachusetts.

  • $7.7 Million Award for Feinberg & Alban Client in Personal Injury Trial

    Boston Attorneys Win Highest Injury Verdict in Massachusetts in 2011 & 2012.

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