How Are Damages Assessed in a Personal Injury Case?

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If you’ve suffered an injury as a result of an accident, whether it was a car accident or a slip and fall, it can sometimes be difficult to accurately assess the damages. Often, the true cost of an injury can’t accurately be assessed until after medical treatment has been administered, and the victim has had time to properly rehabilitate and evaluate the true effects of the injury. This can sometimes take months, or even years, and it’s important that you seek the help of an Ottawa personal injury lawyer.

In personal injury cases, compensatory damages are paid to the victim (the plaintiff) by the person who was found to be legally responsible for the accident (the defendant). Ottawa personal injury lawyers note that insurance companies are usually responsible for paying these damages, and often, the amount is agreed upon prior to trial at a settlement.

When assessing the value of a claim, many factors are considered including the nature of the victim’s injury, the cause of the injury, and the injury’s impact on the victim’s ability to work and perform daily activities. Some damages are quite easy to quantify, such as reimbursement for property damages or medical bills, while others, such as the monetary value that should be placed on pain and suffering, for example, are more difficult.

The following damages are most commonly seen by Ottawa lawyers in personal injury cases:

• Medical treatment: Damages paid in personal injury cases almost always include the cost of medical care sought as a result of the accident. The awarded amount includes the estimated cost of medical care required in the future.

• Pain and suffering: Pain and suffering damages are referred to as non-pecuniary general damages. A victim may be entitled to compensation for both pain and suffering already endured as well as future pain and suffering.

• Loss of income: If the injuries suffered affect the victim’s present and future earning potential, they may be entitled to compensation.

• Home Maintenance: If the injured party is no longer able to perform home maintenance as a result of injuries suffered, compensation may be awarded.

• Property Loss: If clothing or other property was damaged as a result of the accident, the victim is entitled to reimbursement for repairs or compensation for the fair market value of the property.

• Family member claims: Spouses, children, grandchildren, parents, grandparents, brothers, and sisters of a personal injury victim may be able to sue for financial losses that occurred as a result of the victim’s injuries, pursuant to Ontario’s Family Law Act (FLA).

If you have suffered an injury as a result of an accident, it’s important that you contact an Ottawa personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to discuss these criteria in further detail, and to determine the best course of action.