The costs associated with treating unanticipated injuries can add up quickly. In addition to direct expenses like hospital bills and prescription copays, there are indirect costs such as lost income and alternative transportation to consider.
Fortunately, accident victims who have grounds for a personal injury claim may not have to worry about covering these expenses out of pocket. The parties responsible for their injuries may be liable for all applicable damages including medical expenses, lost wages, and even non-economic damages like pain and suffering. These are called “compensatory damages” because they are intended to make claimants whole again by reimbursing them for all economic and non-economic losses.
All payouts that result from successful personal injury claims include compensatory damages. In some cases, though, the injured party may also be entitled to punitive damages, which are intended to punish the defendant for particularly egregious behavior and to deter similar misconduct in the future.