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What Damages Can I Recover After a Truck Accident?

Posted on December 6, 2021

A truck accident can cause catastrophic injuries, and victims are often left with not only physical repercussions but also financial. To help cover your losses, you have the right to recover damages in the form of compensation from the at-fault party. The types of damages available include the following.

Economic Damages

Economic damages reimburse the specific costs that resulted from the other party’s negligence.

Medical Expenses

Current and future medical bills beginning from the accident until you recover. Future medical care is typically calculated based on expert testimony regarding the extent of your injuries and the future treatment you may require, such as doctor appointments, surgeries, medications, physical therapy, etc.

Lost Wages

Any income that you have lost and are expected to lose in the future while you cannot work. You may also be entitled to diminished earning capacity if you suffered a permanent disability and/or are unable to make the same level of income as before the accident.

Property Damage

Compensation for the repairs or replacement of your vehicle, depending on the severity of the damage. You are also entitled to compensation for repairing or replacing any personal items damaged in the truck accident, such as laptops, phones, clothing, etc.

This type of damages can be easier to recover than non-economic damages, explained below. Economic damages are easily quantifiable and can be proven with medical records, bills, receipts and invoices, W-2, etc.

Non-Economic Damages

This form of damages does not deal with physical injury and is subjective but not impossible to prove.

Pain And Suffering

Compensation for the physical and psychological harm or suffering, as well as emotional distress or loss of quality of life caused by the accident and your injuries. Psychological harm or emotional distress often includes depression, PTSD, anxiety, insomnia, loss of appetite, sexual dysfunction. Non-economic damages can be more challenging to prove since you may not have receipts or documentation to establish your losses in terms of the amount of compensation you are owed. Typically what will be considered is whether the victim’s:

  • Daily life has been altered or limited and how;
  • Relationships are impacted.
  • Injuries are permanent, or the length of time until expected recovery.
  • Life expectancy has been shortened.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages can be awarded in cases involving a party (e.g., truck driver, trucking company, etc.) who exhibited extremely reckless behavior or acted with a conscious disregard for the safety of others. This type of compensation is rarely granted and is meant to punish the at-fault party, as well as deter others from similar behavior.

How Can a Truck Accident Attorney Help?

Whether you are going up against a truck driver personally or a trucking company, it can be incredibly challenging to get fair compensation on your own. Trucking companies especially, have the resources and a team of attorneys at their disposal, to do everything in their power to limit their liability. To resolve your claim quickly, their insurance company may try to offer you a settlement but this amount will likely be unfairly low. When you have an attorney on your side, they will know there is a threat of a lawsuit, you will know an accurate estimate of your case’s worth, and they will ensure you recover the amount of compensation that you deserve.