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How are damages determined in a car accident claim?

The victim of a car accident has a lot to worry about concerning their recovery. In addition to focusing on the medical care they need, a victim must be aware of how they are going to pay for their treatment.  Determining what is adequate compensation for damages after an accident is vital to fully compensating the victim of a car accident.

A car accident can cost a victim tens of thousands of dollars.  These damages are not only medical expenses.  What else goes into determining compensation from a car accident?

Total Medical Expenses

Total medical expenses include the costs for all medical treatment a victim receives that is related to the car accident.  This includes all related treatment from physical therapy, chiropractic care, prescriptions, medical equipment and surgeries.  Proper compensation also includes the cost of future medical expenses.

Lost Income

When a victim of a car accident is unable to work they suffer a loss of income.  Adequate compensation for a victim of a car accident includes the value of their lost wages as a result of another person’s negligence.

Pain and Suffering

Pain and suffering are also considered in determining compensation for a victim of a car accident.  Physical pain is hard to put a value on and there is no fixed formula.  Some of the factors usually considered are the type and length of treatment and testimony of loved ones and friends on what an individual has endured.  Suffering is a separate component and consists of being deprived of activities and hobbies or something as simple as not being able to play with or pick up your grandchildren.  Each case is factually different but there is a great deal that needs to be considered that makes up pain and suffering.

Wrongful Death

The loss of a loved one due to the negligent behavior of another person is tragic.  Under North Carolina law damages recoverable for wrongful death include medical treatment incident to the injury resulting in death, pain and suffering of the decedent and reasonable funeral expenses.  Additionally, those entitled are eligible to receive compensation for the loss of income, services, protection, care, assistance, society, companionship, comfort, guidance, kindly offices and advice of the decedent.

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