Collisions between passenger vehicles and semis or other large trucks often lead to severe injuries. Examples include spinal cord trauma and brain injuries. Medical advancements make it possible to survive these injuries and, in some cases, return to your former way of life.
Unfortunately, truck accident victims may suffer from emotional distress, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), on top of their injuries. Many people experiencing long-term anxiety, PTSD, or vehicle phobia in the wake of a truck accident may qualify for non-economic damages.
What are non-economic damages?
A good way to understand these damages is to first look at financial damages. Examples of economic damages include property loss, medical expenses and lost wages. In other words, these damages address the financial losses associated with a vehicle crash.
Non-economic damages are also known as pain and suffering because they address the emotional and mental losses or trauma caused by a truck accident. If your accident has made you afraid or anxious about driving (or riding in) a vehicle, you may qualify for pain and suffering.
Other examples of non-economic damages available in California include:
- Loss of consortium (intimate relations)
- Humiliation (perhaps for scarring or disfigurement)
- Loss of society or companionship (harm to your close relationships)
- Loss of reputation
Of course, these damages also cover extraordinary or long-term pain and suffering, and the emotional and mental trauma discussed above.
If you suffered severe or catastrophic truck accident injuries, it is wise to take stock of your emotional well-being before completing your claim. In most situations, once you accept a settlement offer, you have no further right to collect damages. Learning more about accident and injury compensation can also help you get every dollar of the restitution you deserve.