After you experience a car accident, you may realize your losses are not only limited to medical costs and missed wages. You may also be suffering a range of non-economic damages, which can include pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and disfigurement, among other problems. However, these losses are limited in the amount you can recover.
A dedicated lawyer can help you understand what the damage caps in Memphis car accident cases are and how to circumvent those limits. David E. Gordon is an attorney with experience in recovering the most amount of compensation for his clients as possible.
What is the Damage Cap in Memphis?
Although, the jury will be the one to calculate the amount they think is appropriate to justly compensate the person for their injuries, lawyers and insurance companies have research available that indicates to them what kind of range could be expected in each circumstance. For example, a shoulder injury in Tennessee is likely to bring a value within a certain range. Similarly, a spinal injury has a certain range to it as well.
Local legal professionals are able to use that information when negotiating a settlement with the insurance company on a payout. If settlement cannot be agreed upon, a jury will decide how much pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and disfigurement is worth in an individual’s case. Furthermore, there is a cap on that amount of money.
A damage cap refers to the limitation that the state legislature has put on non-economic awards. In the case of a car accident victim, the state legislature has limited non-economic recovery to $750,000 in the event of an injury. The plaintiff can make a claim for all of their medical expenses and lost earnings, including a projection of future loss of income. Those losses are not deducted from the $750,000 cap.
In the event of a death, the limit in Memphis increases to one million dollars. A family member would be able to make a claim for all of their medical costs, which would not be counted against the $1,000,000 cap.
Are there Ways of Circumventing the Damage Cap for Non-Economic Damages?
There are a number of ways an attorney could increase a person’s recovery while still complying with the state cap law. It would be misleading to claim that they could circumvent the cap because the restrictions are governed by state law. However, a knowledgeable local lawyer such as David can frame the losses to be economic damages so that the plaintiff can recover more overall. Economic damages have no limit.
The best way to see what a person’s future damages are is to seek projections from professional life planners. For example, to outline the amount of out-of-pocket expenses the injured person can expect in their lifetime can be a significant economic loss. The attorney can also hire an economist to calculate the out-of-pocket losses the injured person suffers because they are no longer employed.
Avoiding the Restrictions by Recovering Economic Damages
There are some actions that a plaintiff can do to increase the amount of money that a person can get for their injury and avoid being restricted by damage caps. The attorney plays a variety of roles in helping injured people recover money for their losses. First, they can help an injured person know what insurance policies apply to their situation. Sometimes, a passenger in a car accident could even recover damages from their own policy if the other person’s policy does not cover everything, or from their parents’ policy. Even if the at-fault driver is unknown, a person’s own insurance policy may apply in a pedestrian accident case.
Handling Insurance Companies
A second way that attorneys help injured people get proper compensation is by using their experience in knowing what amount is fair in Memphis. Insurance companies have two primary goals. Goal number one is to find fault with the injured person and thereby reduce the amount that the injured person would be entitled to.
The second objective for the insurance company is to pay the injured person as little as possible. A person with a serious injury and $10,000 in medical bills might get a $5,000 offer from the insurance company. Insurance companies do this because they know that injured people may not fully understand their own rights or that they are entitled to be compensated for the full amount of their medical bills in addition to their pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and lost earnings.
Gathering Documentation for Memphis Insurance Claims
A third way that lawyers help people get properly compensated is by knowing how to gather the documentation that insurance companies require. They will know what medical evidence is necessary to connect the person’s injury to the car accident and what documentation an insurer needs to get a person compensated for their lost earnings. Also, they are experienced in knowing what information is required from witnesses to convince an insurance company that they owe the injured person for the accident.
Damage Caps in Memphis Car Accident Cases
Damage caps in Memphis car accident cases do not have to hold you back from recovering all of your losses. Attorney David E. Gordon is experienced in recovering the most amount possible for his clients, even though there is a cap on non-economic damages. Call today to discuss what recovery may be possible in your case.