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Figuring out damages in a car accident case

If you have been in a car accident in Orange County, handling the aftermath means assessing the extent of the damage. Getting an accurate assessment of how much your case is likely worth is important to recovering the compensation you need.

Generally, most car crash victims can ask for damages to compensate them for financial and other types of loss they experience as a result of the accident. Medical expenses, in particular, continue to grow in a way that does not necessarily correlate with the severity of injuries.

Monetary losses

Economic damages often form the bulk of awards in personal injury cases. You can calculate these losses by assessing past and future expenses stemming from the accident. Past losses can also be easy to tabulate because you already know what you spent. Expert consultants can assist plaintiffs with projections of likely future losses.

This category includes out-of-pocket expenses such as payments for medical treatments or assistive devices. You may need to hire professionals to assist you with domestic living tasks you used to do yourself. Injuries may cause you to miss days from work, cut your hours or even lose your job. You may never recover the ability to return to work. Defendants may contest financial damages by arguing that not all projected treatments may be medically necessary or that the injury is less severe than the plaintiff claims. They may ask for an additional medical evaluation they hope will contradict your doctor's findings.

Pain and suffering

In addition to monetary loss, surviving a car crash often entails other, less quantifiable types of harm. Injuries may cause physical pain, psychological trauma and humiliation. With an injury causing functional impairment, you may experience a diminution in quality of life. In California, drivers with no insurance may not obtain pain and suffering damages, even if they bear no fault for the accident. They can still get economic damages.

What if you were at fault as well?

The issue of fault plays a large role in car accident cases. However, even if you contributed to the accident, you may still recover damages. If the case goes to trial, the jury will calculate the percentage of each party's contribution to the accident and reduce your award by the percentage of your fault.

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