The process of filing a car accident claim is often accompanied by terminology you may not be familiar with. If you hear an insurance adjuster or your attorney refer to special damages, they are talking about damages with an exact monetary value.

Types of Special Damages

Common types of special damages in personal injury cases include:

Medical expenses.

These include emergency room care, diagnostic tests, surgery, hospital stays, medication, physical therapy, follow-up appointments, and other related healthcare costs associated with your injury. If you have a permanent disability caused by the accident, these expenses also include anticipated future care costs due to your condition.

Lost wages.

You are entitled to compensation for time missed from work, as well as the value of all employment benefits such as vacation time, 401(k) contributions, or health insurance that you may have lost due to the accident. Loss of future earning capacity should be included in your claim if you have been left with a permanent disability as the result of the accident.

Property damage.

This includes repair or replacement for your vehicle, as well as any valuable items that were also damaged in the crash such as your cell phone or laptop. The cost of a rental car would also be included in this category of damages.

Special damages need to be thoroughly documented, so it’s important to save all paperwork related to your accident. Copies of hospital bills, pay stubs, and repair shop invoices will help you maximize your compensation. However, if you are seeking anticipated future damages for medical expenses or lost earning capacity, your attorney will need to find expert witnesses who can calculate these values on your behalf.

If you are determined to be partially at fault for an accident, you can still seek compensation for all special damages you’ve incurred. However, your settlement will be proportionately reduced by your percentage of fault to reflect your financial responsibility for accident-related expenses.

Have You Been Injured in a Louisiana Car Accident?

If you’ve been hurt in a Louisiana car accident, you need to speak with an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible to protect your right to compensation. Please contact us online, or call our Alexandria office to schedule your free consultation.