Injuries and Compensation
After an automobile accident, the injured party has to bring a claim or file suit to recover certain damages from the injured party. What damages an injured party is entitled to recover depends on the claim filed and the state in which the accident and the lawsuit take place. In order to ensure that you receive reimbursement for all of the damages in which you are entitled, it is important to retain an experienced personal injury attorney who will work to get you the best compensation possible.
Many injured individuals are only aware of their right to having their medical expenses reimbursed, or reimbursement for any vehicle repairs. However, there are many other damages you have the right to recover if you have been injured in an automobile accident such as payment of past and future lost wages (whether or not you used sick time), permanent impairment and/or disfigurement, and reimbursement for any costs of a replacement vehicle while your damaged vehicle was being repaired. Even if you have had a previous injury, you still might be able to recover damages if that previous injury was reinjured or aggravated by the automobile accident.
You are also able to seek damages for any pain and suffering (emotional and physical) that you have as a result of the accident. Because these damages are harder to calculate, it is important to document the effect the accident has had on you by keeping a journal for your attorney that describes how you were impacted by the accident and how your injuries have burdened and impacted your family.
Damages for Family Members
“Loss of consortium” is a claim that the injured person and their spouse can bring that allows the spouse of the injured party to recover for damage the automobile accident has caused to the marital relationship. A loss of consortium claim seeks damages for the negative effect of the automobile accident on the marital relationship. KRS 411.145 defines "consortium" as “the right to the services, assistance, aid, society, companionship and conjugal relationship between husband and wife, or wife and husband.” This loss can be temporary or permanent.
When you file a claim for an automobile accident, the at-fault driver is typically the defendant named. However, the at-fault driver’s insurance company will most likely pay for the damages. There are instances when your own insurance may be liable for some or all of your injuries. See Uninsured and Underinsured Motorists Claims to learn when your insurance company may be liable for some or all of your damages. Also, other insurance policies, such as the policies of other family members in your household or you employer, may provide coverage for your damages. In some states you can “stack” uninsured and underinsured motorist policies depending on the terms of the policies. An experienced personal injury attorney at Miller and Falkner can determine what coverage is available to compensate you for your injuries.
After they have received medical treatment, the most important question the majority of clients have after being injured in an automobile accident is what amount they will recover from their claim. There is no set amount that certain claims or certain injuries are worth. The value of an automobile accident case depends on a number of factors, including the laws of the state regarding fault, whether the insurance company for the at-fault driver is contesting liability, the type and severity of the injuries you sustained in the accident, what medical treatment was required, whether any witnesses are available and the amount of insurance coverage available. Insurance companies will also look at the facts surrounding the accident, what damage the vehicle sustained and whether you sustained any loss of wages or other income. An experienced personal injury attorney can look at all these factors to help determine the value of your case and work to get the best possible recovery of damages on your claim.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an automobile accident it is important to contact a personal injury attorney at Miller and Falkner immediately so that we can help you get the treatment you need and the recovery of damages that you deserve. Contact us for a free consultation to have your questions answered.