Car accidents can have devastating consequences, leaving families shattered and lives forever changed. If you or a loved one suffered severe injuries or a family member tragically lost their life in an auto crash in Fairfax, it is crucial to understand your rights as a victim.
If a negligent driver caused the wreck, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Our experienced Fairfax car accident lawyers can help determine the value of your claim and fight for the damages you deserve from the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
Types of Compensation You Can Recover
To obtain compensation from a negligent driver’s insurance company, you must prove the other motorist’s negligence caused your auto collision. A skilled auto accident attorney can determine what caused your wreck and collect the evidence you need to help win your case.
They will also determine how much compensation you should receive in your settlement with the insurance company. You may be entitled to past and future damages if you have not fully recovered from your injuries. There are many types of compensation awarded in these cases.
Medical expenses can quickly add up when you have been injured in a car accident.
Typically, compensation for these costs covers current and future medical bills, hospitalization, surgeries, medication, rehabilitation, physical therapy, and any necessary assistive devices.
It is essential to maintain thorough documentation of all medical treatments and expenses incurred as a result of the car collision to support your claim for compensation. If you suffered a long-term injury, you may need to hire an expert witness to help calculate the future damages you are entitled to.
Lost Wages and Lost Earning Capacity Damages
If you must take time off work while recovering from your injuries, you may be entitled to compensation for your past and future lost wages, vacation and sick time, commissions, bonuses, and other perks of your job. You may also recover lost earning capacity damages if you must switch careers and take a pay cut or become permanently disabled due to your injuries. You should provide documentation such as pay stubs, tax returns, and employer statements to help your lawyer accurately calculate the value of your lost wages.
Auto crashes often result in damage to vehicles and personal property, such as cellphones and electronics. Compensation for property damages covers the repair or replacement costs of your damaged car and other property. Keep records of estimates and invoices to support your property damage claim.
Pain and Suffering
You could suffer physical pain, emotional distress, and a diminished quality of life due to your injuries. Pain and suffering damages compensate you for these non-economic damages. While it can be challenging to assign a monetary value to emotional and physical suffering, a knowledgeable car accident lawyer will consider various factors, such as the severity of your injuries, the impact on your daily life, and the duration of your pain and suffering, to calculate how much you should receive for your pain and suffering in your settlement.
Tragically, some car accidents result in fatalities. If a loved one did not survive the crash, you may be able to obtain compensation as a surviving family member in a wrongful death action. Damages awarded in these claims include the following:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Medical expenses before your family member’s death
- Loss of companionship
- Future financial support that your loved one would have provided
While no amount of compensation can ever replace a lost loved one, wrongful death compensation can help alleviate the financial burdens associated with your loss and give you a sense of justice.
When You May Be Entitled to Punitive Damages
If the negligent driver’s actions were deemed willful, wanton, or malicious, you may be able to recover punitive damages. Unlike compensatory damages, which aim to restore the accident victim, punitive damages are designed to punish the at-fault motorist and deter others from similar conduct.
However, punitive damages are not awarded in every case and are typically reserved for situations involving extreme negligence or intentional misconduct. While there is no cap on the compensatory damages you can recover, the cap on the punitive damages you can receive is $350,000.