• Personal Injury
  • Auto Accidents
  • Wrongful Death

What are personal injury compensatory damages?


Accidents, whether caused by a negligent driver or by a negligent property manager, can cause injuries that lead accident victims to years of pain and financial hardship. Many of these victims are often unaware that they may have a viable claim for compensatory damages.  This type of monetary compensation is used to make a party whole again, as if the accident never occurred. This often involves putting a specific dollar amount on the various conditions and consequences that accident victims usually face. Forbes.com reports that any monies accident victims recover may be tax-free.

Lost Income

When a victim is injured in an accident, they often must take time off of work to heal or recuperate. The time they take away from work can vary greatly; those with minor injuries may only require a few days to heal while some parties may become permanently disabled and unable to ever return to the workforce. Accident victims can also be compensated for how the accident has affected their income and status at work. This includes any money they would have made had the accident not occurred. If a personal injury victim is unable to return to the job force, they can receive financial restitution for their projected earnings. For example, a man who receives a promotion at work only to be involved in a terrible accident the next day would have a claim for future earnings at the rate he would have received in his new capacity, and potentially for any other expected promotions as well.

Property loss and medical treatment

When an accident involves personal property, the cost to repair or replace those items is often included in any damages the accident victim receives. Items that may be covered include cars, trucks, boats, clothing and any other items that were damaged. Reimbursement is usually calculated at the fair market value.

Bills for medical treatment can quickly become overwhelming for many injured parties. These costs are almost always included in any awarded damages. This often includes compensation for past medical costs and may also include an amount for any future medical expenses that a victim is expected to incur due to the effects of the accident.

Emotional damages

An award for pain and suffering is used to compensate victims for the physical pain and discomfort that they endure following an accident. Sometimes the negligence of the offending party is so severe that victims can face severe emotional effects from the trauma of their accidents. Those who are injured can be compensated for the psychological impacts that they face, including sleep loss, increased anxiety and fear. Loss of enjoyment of life’s activities and loss of a personal relationship with a spouse are also common awards.

Personal injury matters can be extremely complex. Victims should contact a Chicago personal injury attorney as soon as possible for the best chance at receiving maximum compensation.