What Damages Can Be Awarded in Your Nevada Personal Injury Claim?

When you or someone you care about is involved in an accident that results in serious injury to person or damage to property, the harmed party is entitled to just compensation through Nevada’s legal system. Below are some examples how a Nevada personal injury lawyer can help you seek the justice you deserve.

Monetary Damages

There is a public policy reason why an injured party may seek and be awarded monetary damages for personal injuries and property damage suffered from an accident that was the fault of another. The purpose behind monetary compensation for harm incurred is to make the victim whole again. In other words, monetary compensation should be awarded for physical, emotional, and mental recovery necessary to get back on track with the victim’s life prior to the accident. There are two types of damages in personal injury cases—economic and non-economic

Economic Damages

Economic damages are compensation that can be quantified. An award of economic damages largely depends on the facts surrounding the particular case. For this reason, there are several factors that may be considered when a judge or jury is deciding the monetary award. Two of the most common types of damages in a Nevada personal injury case include:

  • Medical costs and expenses: These awards can include funds to cover emergency room visits, medication, rehabilitation, hospital stays, physical therapy, as well as short or long term testing and treatment.

  • Lost opportunity and wages: If the victim’s injuries will keep him or her from being able to perform a prior job for a period of time, he or she may be entitled to lost wages or opportunity at work. Monetary compensation is available even if the victim has available vacation or sick time with the employer. Finally, if the injuries suffered result in disability or permanent loss of work, an award of lost wages over the victim’s lifetime may also be available.

Non Economic Damages

Non economic damages, on the other hand, cannot be quantified but rather are more difficult to calculate in monetary terms. These include compensation for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of companionship, among others. For this reason, insurance companies often seek to settle a personal injury case because of the high exposure to liability.

If a Nevada accident results in the death of a loved one, surviving family members may be entitled to damages due to the loss.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are an entirely different type of monetary award, with a differing public policy purpose. As the name implies, these damages are aimed to punish the person or entity who acted with willful intent to harm another—or, at the very least, with an awareness of the probable damages that would result from its actions or inaction. Punitive damages are meant to punish the defendant and use them as an example. The purpose of punitive damages is to deter the defendant (and others) from acting in a similar fashion and causing similar harm. While some states do not have punitive damages at all, Nevada law allows additional punitive damage awards up to $300,000 for compensatory damage awards of $100,000 or less; for compensatory damage awards of more than $100,000, punitive damages can be up to three times the compensatory amount. Of note, when the lawsuit involves a defective product and the defendant was part of the chain of distribution (i.e., a manufacturer, distributor, or retailer), the punitive damage caps do not apply. They also do not apply in defamation cases.

Personal Injury Lawyers in Nevada

If you or someone you love has been injured in a Nevada accident due to the negligence of another, do not try to handle this alone. The skilled lawyers at Parry & Pfau have been fighting for the rights of injured victims across Nevada for years. Click here today to schedule your initial case evaluation and learn more about your rights under the law.

(image courtesy of Allef Vinicius)