If you’ve sustained an injury due to someone else’s wrongdoing, you may be entitled to compensation. It depends on how serious the injury is and the specific circumstances. Personal injury claims generally fall under four main categories:
1. Motor vehicle accidents
If you are hurt due to the negligence of other road users, you may be able to claim for damages.
2. Medical negligence
If a medical professional fails in their duty of care and causes harm due to an action or an omission, you may be able to claim for damages if the harm was due to the action or omission and it was foreseeable that the injury/harm could occur.
3. Workers Compensation
If you injure yourself at work you may be able to claim for loss of income and depending on the nature of injury you may be able to claim for damages. The injury sustained can either be a physical injury or psychological harm.
4. Public Liability
If you have a slip or trip in a public place due to someone’s negligence you may be able claim for damages.
Damages for personal injury claims
Damages can be classified into economic damages and general damages which are non-economic damages.
1. Economic Damages
Economic damages have a monetary figure and signifies the amount lost by a person due to their injury/harm. These can include future and past loss of earnings, future and past medical expenses, future lost earning capacity, future profits and any damage caused to the injured person’s real property.
These are usually calculated by documents provided for example invoices, pay slips, employment contracts, EBAs etc.
Future losses have discount rates applied as they are being paid in a lump sum, while past losses have interest applied as they have already been accrued. In regards to future losses, growth rates have to be considered too.
2. General Damages
These damages are traditionally known as damages awarded for “pain and suffering” experienced by the person who was injured. “Pain and Suffering” includes pain, anxiety, nervous shock, loss of enjoyment in life for example a person who used to walk/run all the time and due to an accident can’t walk anymore.
These are usually harder to calculate than economic damage as there are no hard set figures to estimate the loss. Some of the loss can be calculated generally on evidence such as medical notes, statements from the person injured and expert evidence.
There is a strict three-year limitation period applied on all personal injury claims which is counted from the time that you knew or found out about the injury/harm caused.