There are several types of damages that are recoverable in a personal injury case in the state of Florida.
These damages are normally separated into two categories: compensatory and punitive.
Compensatory damages are a financial compensation for the injured party. Meaning that injuries can be assessed a monetary value and be paid to the person injured. These types of damages are also split into two categories: economic and non-economic.
Economic Compensatory damages include:
- Past Lost Income – Any income lost due to injury. In a car accident either your own insurance, or the at fault party’s bodily injury insurer can pay for these damages.
- Future Lost Income – Any income that will be lost due to injury. The at fault party is responsible for these damages. Uninsured motorist coverage can cover these as well.
- Medical Expenses – Expenses incurred from hospital and doctor visits.
- Your insurance will cover up to 80% of your medical expenses if you are deemed to have an emergency medical condition after a car accident. You can make a claim against the at fault driver for the remaining amount.
- In a slip in fall case, the business may have “medical payments” coverage that will pay for any injuries incurred. If they do not have this coverage, you will have to prove that the business caused your accident resulting in injury to receive damages.
- Personal Property Loss – If any items are lost or damaged after an accident. Damages can be paid by the at fault party’s property damage coverage or by your own collision coverage.
- Funeral Expenses – Cost to hold a funeral for the deceased party after an accident. Can be covered by the decedent’s personal injury protection, uninsured motorist, the other driver, owner, or employer.
- Mileage– Distance traveled to medical appointments and the pharmacy. $.50 cents for every mile.
Non-Economic Compensatory damages include:
- Pain and Suffering – Embarrassment, humiliation, disfigurement, loss of ability to enjoy life, and loss of domestic or household services- After a car accident, this generally requires a permanent injury to claim damages. In slip and fall type accidents, permanent injury is not required.
Punitive damages are used to punish the liable party. Although these damages are not often paid to the injured party, they are used in cases where the at fault party displays a willful disregard for the safety, health, and rights of those around them. Florida requires a higher standard than ordinary negligence to recover punitive damages.
In all cases, negligence and causation must be proven to recover damages.