What are non-economic damages? Can you get compensation for them?

On Behalf of | Mar 1, 2021 | Personal Injury

Suffering injuries in a serious car or truck accident can be life changing. You may have recently found yourself suffering significant harm in a crash caused by a negligent or reckless driver, and now, you have to live with the consequences of that driver’s bad decisions. In some ways, your life may never be the same, and even after you recover from your injuries as well as possible, you may not have the full abilities that you did before the accident.

As you obtain medical treatment for those injuries, the mounting medical bills themselves may give you nausea. You may already know that you could obtain compensation for those bills if you pursue a successful personal injury claim against the driver considered at fault for the injury-causing accident, but what about damages that do not have a set monetary amount?

Non-economic damages

Undoubtedly, since the accident, you have experienced pain, suffering, loss of abilities (whether temporary or permanent) and other difficulties that have affected how you live your life. In many cases, these and other similar damages fall into the category of non-economic damages. They typically relate to quality and enjoyment of life, and if the accident has diminished your quality of life, you may have reason to pursue non-economic damages as part of your civil lawsuit.

Some common non-economic damages include the following:

  • Compromised sense of self-worth, integrity and dignity
  • Inability to perform daily tasks on your own
  • Emotional struggles like depression, anxiety, embarrassment or shame
  • Inability to make decisions as easily as before the accident
  • Inability to participate in once-loved activities and hobbies
  • Physical pain

Of course, non-economic damages could include numerous other issues that may arise directly because of the injuries you suffered in the vehicle accident. These can vary depending on the exact injuries you suffered and the unique toll those injuries take on your life.

Seeking compensation

A personal injury claim could allow you to seek compensation for non-economic damages as well as economic damages, such as medical bills and lost wages. In many cases, these awards can help negatively affected individuals find ways to live their lives to the best of their abilities despite the harm the injuries have caused to those abilities. It is important to keep in mind that each civil case is different and the specific amount of compensation available could depend on various factors, including Pennsylvania state law.