Sometimes, involvement in an accident results in injury, meaning you may want to file a personal injury lawsuit. Consequently, you can click here for personal injury attorney myrtle beach SC to jump-start the process. Mostly, the vital element of such a case is damages – this mostly entails the financial award you seek as compensation for your injuries.
Generally, there are two types of damages: special and general. General damages are more difficult to calculate and include pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.
On the other hand, special damages are losses that can be calculated, such as medical bills and property damage. When determining the amount to ask for in a personal injury lawsuit, you need to consider both special and general damages. An experienced attorney can help you assess your case’s value and determine the best way to proceed.
Special damages may also include future losses you’re likely to incur due to injury. For instance, if you’ve suffered a back injury that will require ongoing medical treatment and will prevent you from returning to work, you can include these future losses in your claim. Similarly, getting involved in an accident could imply that you’re not in a position to work due to injury. As such, a claim for special damages could include loss of your wages when you’re incapacitated or recovering.
Can special damages cover aspects that don’t impact you directly? Yes. Let’s assume that before the accident, you were caring for your children. After the mishap, you may have to hire a nanny or take your children to a nursery. As a result, the cost of hiring a minder could factor into your claim for special damages.
Proving Your Claim
Filing and proving your claim for special damages can be tricky. For starters, you’ll need to have relevant documentation to back up your claims, such as:
- Medical records and bills
- Wage statements
- Invoices for property damage
The computation of the amount of special damages is usually more straightforward than general damages. Provided you have evidence of the actual expenses, which are generally beyond your control due to the accident, you can file a successful claim for such losses. Generally, the idea behind the relief provided in such a claim is to restore you to your former position if the accident and subsequent injury hadn’t occurred.
That said, such losses must directly result from the injury you’ve sustained. An experienced personal injury attorney can help you to gather the necessary evidence and build a strong case. Along the same lines, they can help you compute the value of your claim (including the general and special damages) before your case goes to trial.
Receiving Special Damages
To qualify for special damages, you must also be eligible for general damages. If your claim is successful, you may be awarded a lump sum (to cater to both types of damages) upon the conclusion of your case. But in some cases, you may get interim payments, such as when the at-fault party owns up.
Also, since your case may take time to conclude, you may not be in a position to wait. Case in point, if your injury implies you’re unable to pay your recurring monthly expenses, then interim payments may be justifiable. With your lawyer’s assistance, you can apply for interim payments – allowing you access to smaller amounts to cover your financial costs.
That aside, you have a duty to keep your losses from spiraling out of control. Let’s assume that you have the option of getting treatment from an out-of-network provider but opt for an in-network one. If you do so, your medical bills will be significantly lower than if you had chosen the out-of-network option – in which case, you may have difficulty trying to claim for it.
When assessing your claim, courts usually consider whether you minimize your losses. It’s essential to know that you can only be compensated for the actual losses suffered. Therefore, choosing the most expensive treatment plan would be unwise if a more affordable one could get the job done.
Seeking Legal Representation
It would be best if you had a legal representative in your corner if you’re planning to file a claim for special damages. Besides gathering evidence, they can:
- Identify or assess possible claims
- Interview witnesses to prove negligence
- Safeguard your interests in court
- Hire experts
All of these efforts can help you file a successful lawsuit. Otherwise, striking out on your own could lower your odds of getting special damages. Plus, the intricate legal aspects surrounding personal injury, including the filing process, require a competent professional’s input.
Consider contacting a personal injury lawyer if you’re injured in an accident to discuss your case. They can help you understand your legal options and determine the best way to proceed. That way, you can prove your claim for special damages.