Economic vs. Non-Economic Damages

Q: What are economic and non-economic damages in a personal injury case?

A: Clients in personal injury cases may recover economic and non-economic damages. Some attorneys may refer to them as “general” or “special” damages. In some circumstances, punitive damages may be available as well.

So, what exactly are economic damages? Economic damages are the compensation you may receive in place of monetary losses due to an injury. Some examples of economic damages:

– Medical bills incurred as a result of your injury- past and future

– Lost wages incurred as a result of your injury- past and future

– Money to pay for household services that you are no longer capable of doing

– Vehicle repairs or replacement

Non-economic damages are more abstract, and are often referred to as “pain and suffering.” Some examples of non-economic damages:

– Mental anguish

– Pain

– Inconvenience

– Disfigurement

– Physical impairment

– Humiliation

– Reputation damage

– Emotional distress

– Worsening of previous injuries

Assigning a dollar amount to economic damages is often more straightforward because the numbers are firm, versus the intangibles associated with non-economic damages. Insurance companies often undervalue the losses represented by non-economic damages. This is one are where an experienced attorney can help you get the compensation you are entitled to. If you have been injured and have questions about either, contact us to discuss your options.

We care about our clients, and keeping our community safe. That’s the reason we get up every day and do what we do. We don’t sue unless we have to, and we only take cases we believe in. If you are in need of legal assistance please call 573.335.6651.