When a driver negligently causes an accident in Las Vegas, NV, injured parties have a right to compensation under the state’s personal injury laws. The types of losses you can recover after a car accident will be based on your injuries. However, you have to present substantial evidence to demonstrate in court the extent of your damages and other losses you have incurred in the accident.
Proving a personal injury claim is not always easy. That is why you need the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer. Your lawyer will study the details of your case to determine the right course of action to take, guide you through the legal process and fight by your side until you obtain the compensation you deserve. Talk to us at Dallas Horton & Associates for help and guidance in the types of damages you could recover.
A Brief Overview of Nevada Personal Injury Laws
Car accidents in Nevada are pretty common. They occur due to many factors, the most common one being negligence. It could be a negligent motorist, vehicle manufacturer, other road users like a motorcyclist, bicyclist, or even poor road conditions. Nevada personal injury laws are designed to help the injured victims to receive damages for their injuries and losses if the car accident they were involved in was due to negligence by one or more parties. For instance, if you are injured in an accident that an intoxicated motorist caused, you deserve compensation for all your damages.
However, you must demonstrate negligence and your damages in a civil court to obtain the compensation you deserve. It is not enough to name the possible negligent party even if you are sure about their contribution in causing the accident. The law provides a detailed guideline on how you can prove negligence to hold another party accountable for your damages. For instance, you must demonstrate the alleged party’s duty of care and how they breached that duty of care to cause your injuries. You must also prove how your injuries and other losses were a direct consequence of the car accident.
With sufficient proof and the best legal help, you should compel the court to award all your damages. Then you will take care of the financial and non-financial needs that were a result of the accident.
Damages in a Nevada car accident vary from one accident to the other. You might have incurred more serious physical injuries and property damage than another person in a similar accident. Therefore, you need legal guidance in determining your damages and the amount you deserve for each loss.
Fortunately for you, Nevada law has clear guidelines on how you can recover compensation for your damages after a car accident. The law applies whether you are the driver or passenger. If another driver caused the crash or the driver of the vehicle you were traveling in as a passenger, you are entitled to compensation for your damages.
Types of Losses Available in a Nevada Car Accident
You can incur all manner of damages in a car accident. Under Nevada laws, negligent parties are responsible for the resulting damages. For instance, in case of reckless or careless driving, the negligent driver will be held accountable for causing the accident and compensating for your losses.
Damages in a Nevada car accident can take many forms, depending on the nature of the accident. They could be in terms of monetary and non-monetary losses you experience after an accident. You may not be aware of all the damages you can seek compensation for. That is why you need the counsel of a competent personal injury lawyer.
The cost of medical treatment is the first thing that comes to mind at the mention of compensatory damages after a car accident. A car accident is likely to leave you nursing severe physical injuries, which might cost you a lot of money, and take time to heal. However, you might want to consider other damages, like the pain you experienced after the crash, the suffering you had to go through before recovery, and the loss of intimacy with your loved ones. You might also want to consider the property you lost in the accident, like the damage to your car, bicycle, or personal items like a laptop or phone.
Ensure that you pursue total compensation for all your damages. Sometimes you might be tempted to accept an out-of-court settlement from an insurance provider because you need quick cash to settle some of your bills. But an insurance company will not always offer the compensation you deserve. Your attorney will try to negotiate for a better settlement. If the insurance company is not willing to provide the compensation you deserve, you can file a lawsuit in a civil court. The judge will be kind enough to consider your evidence and other factors to award you total compensation for your losses.
Let us look into the details of damages that could be available for you if you incurred injuries in a Nevada car accident.
They refer to all the calculable losses incurred in a car accident. They have a dollar value attached. Any financial loss you incur after a car accident will be included in economic damages. However, you have to document your losses and value them fully to recover total compensation for your losses. A competent personal injury lawyer could help with that. The damages you could pursue under this category are:
A car accident is likely to leave one or more people with physical injuries. Thus, there will be a need to seek medical care to treat and manage wounds and injuries. The compensation you deserve for medical expenses will be based on the nature and extent of your physical injuries. Medical expenses include more than the treatment you receive immediately after a car accident.
They include the cost of emergency services you needed after the crash. Maybe you were rushed to an emergency room after the accident for first aid and treatment. That is necessary to save lives and prevent physical injuries from worsening. The cost of transportation to and from the ER, plus the total cost of treatment, will be included under the medical expenses.
If you incurred more severe injuries after the collision, you would probably require more treatment after the emergency care. In that case, you must have paid for doctor’s consultation, medical tests, and medications. Again, the cost of transportation to and from the hospital will be included in the total cost.
Again, if your injuries were severe, you might have stayed in the hospital for a few days, weeks, or months, receiving care and treatment under your doctor’s close observation. Any medical-related expense you incurred after you were discharged from the hospital will also count under medical expenses.
Some injuries heal quickly, while others take time to heal. Some do not heal at all. Your medical costs will also include any medical treatment you will need in the future. For instance, you might need rehabilitation services or pain medications for the remaining part of your life.
Medical expenses are straightforward to determine. You only need to record every expense you incur after the accident to include them in your claim. A detailed report from your doctor will also paint a picture of the nature and severity of your injuries and whether or not you’ll require treatment in the future. That is the evidence you need to prove to the court why you need so much money in compensation for your medical needs after a car accident.
However, you must seek medical treatment after the accident. It is the only way to convince the insurance company and court of your injuries. It shows that you were indeed injured, and so you deserve compensation for your losses.
Lost Wages and Income
You are likely to lose your wages or income after a car accident during the treatment and healing period. That is the time you’ll not be going to work and earning a living. Note that you cannot go back to work immediately after a car accident. Even after a not-so-serious accident, your doctor will advise you to take a break from work, just to be sure that you are physically okay before you continue working.
Thus, lost wages and income is listed among the economic damages you can pursue compensation for after an auto accident. Again, these damages are straightforward to calculate. You only need to determine your daily wages or income, then multiply them by the days you will be out of work.
Lost wages are likely to be more if you need more time from work to recover from your injuries. Some people do not even go back to work, mainly due to devastating injuries. Your experienced attorney will guide you in determining the exact loss to ensure that you are not missing out on the compensation you truly deserve.
Lost Earning Ability
You could lose your earning capacity after a car accident in Nevada. Devastating car injuries leave victims with severe life-altering injuries that could make it difficult for them to engage in gainful employment. When that happens, you’ll need compensation to cater to your needs as you figure out a way to start earning a living once again.
Lost earning ability could be temporary or permanent, depending on the gravity of your injuries. Some long-term injuries become better with time and could allow you to work, even at a lower-level job than your current one. Others will leave you incapacitated and incapable of ever working.
The compensation you include for your lost earning potential will vary, depending on the nature of your injuries. If your loss is temporary, you’ll only seek compensation to cover the period within which you’ll not be working and earning a living. But if your injuries are permanent, you might require financial support for the remaining part of your life.
Your economic damages will also include any property damage you might have incurred in the accident. It could be a damaged vehicle that requires repair or replacement or lost personal property. You must document these and determine their current value as proof of loss. A judge will be considerate enough to ensure that any property value you could have lost during the accident is adequately compensated. Your attorney will also be there to ensure that you do not undervalue personal property or fail to include all properties for compensation.
Economic damages will also include transportation costs directly related to the car accident. It could be that you need transport after the incident, whether to the hospital, home, or anywhere that you were needed. Again, it is crucial to document all these as irrefutable proof that you incurred the said expenses, and hence, you deserve compensation. For instance, if you rented a car or hired a cab during the recovery period, you need to include that in your personal injury claim. It could be that you could not drive your vehicle since it was severely damaged during the accident, and you needed a means of transportation before the vehicle could be repaired or replaced.
If you were severely injured and had to remain at home for some time to recover, you might have hired a caregiver to help you meet your basic needs. Caregiver services will also have been necessary if you have small children that depend on your help and support for their day-to-day living. In our injured state, you may not have been in a position to care for your children and yourself. In that case, the cost of caregiver services would be the responsibility of the at-fault party. Thus, you must include that as damages in your claim.
Non-economic damages include intangible losses whose value you cannot calculate. Thus, you only have them in your claim, and then the jury evaluates them in the lawsuit to determine whether you deserve compensation and how much compensation you should receive. You could receive different kinds of non-economic damages if you incur injuries in a car accident in Nevada. The most common ones are:
Suffering and Pain
They are two intangible losses that you cannot avoid after a car accident. The suffering and pain you incur with your injuries and other losses may not be easy to evaluate, but you deserve compensation for it.
A car accident is likely to leave you in intense pain for days, weeks, months, or even for the remaining part of your life. The gravity of pain you could experience depends on the seriousness of the accident. For instance, if you incurred a catastrophic injury, you could suffer and experience pain for the remaining part of your life. Your family will suffer with you, even though they’ll not experience your physical pain.
That is why Nevada laws allow compensation for suffering and pain after a vehicle accident. Suffering and pain could include the discomfort you experience after an injury, the emotional distress you go through after an accident, the anguish, emotional trauma, and inconvenience. Your aggressive personal injury attorney will put up a good fight to ensure that you receive maximum damages for your suffering and pain.
Loss of Companionship/Affection
A lot is likely to change in your life after an accident. For instance, due to pain and emotional trauma, you could withdraw from your loved ones. The lengthy stay in the hospital will also keep you away from your family. You never enjoy their companionship as much as you did before the accident.
An injury might also make it hard for you to enjoy the things you enjoyed doing with your children or spouse. That is why you deserve compensation for the loss of companionship or affection, at least during the recovery period. Some injuries affect the victim’s relationship with their loved ones for good, creating a major rift that could not have been experienced if the accident had never occurred.
Loss of Consortium
These damages will be available to your spouse or domestic partner to compensate for the loss they incurred after your car accident injury. If your injury affected your spousal relationship, your partner is allowed by law to claim compensation for the lost consortium. The damages cater to the loss your relationship has incurred due to the accident. Some of these losses are temporary, while others are permanent. It all depends on the nature of the accident. Therefore, a court will award damages under this category based on the accident’s impact on your relationship.
Emotional distress is inevitable after an accident. You are likely to experience an even more significant emotional trauma than physical trauma. For instance, you start worrying about your treatment and chances of recovery immediately after the accident. If you have dependents, you start worrying about their wellbeing and how they’ll cope in your absence. A devastating injury will leave you worrying about your chance of survival.
Emotional distress will rob you of your happiness even when you are well on your recovery journey. You could still be emotionally distressed even when receiving treatment in the best hospitals and have the support of your loved ones.
The jury would like to know how much the accident affected your emotions. An aggressive personal injury attorney will fight for maximum compensation.
Loss of Life Enjoyment
Car accidents affect people differently. Some people escape with minor injuries, while others live with injuries for the rest of their lives. The greatest impact a catastrophic injury is likely to have on you is affecting your life enjoyment. Everyone has some fun activities they enjoy, either alone, with friends or family. An injury could make it difficult for you to enjoy some of these fun activities. For instance, you may no longer have to play soccer with your children after an accident or even dance with your spouse.
Emotional stress after a car accident will also make it hard for you to enjoy anything in life especially if you are constantly in physical pain.
Disfigurement or Disability
No one is prepared for disfigurement or disability. Therefore, it comes with a lot of physical and emotional stress. These are effects of a car accident that you might have to live with for the remaining part of your life. It will be a constant reminder of the accident and your inabilities after the accident. That is why you deserve compensation for that. If the accident left you with a disfigurement or disability, you could include it in your personal injury claim. Your attorney will ensure that you receive maximum compensation for the same.
Under certain circumstances, a civil court could award punitive damages to a car accident victim on top of their actual losses. When that happens, you are likely to have more in damages for your losses.
Judges grant punitive damages in accidents involving gross negligence. For instance, if the alleged responsible party demonstrated gross negligence, like overspeeding while intoxicated, the court may grant the accident victim punitive damages as punishment to the negligent party. The punishment is also meant to warn other drivers against similar conduct, likely to result in devastating car accidents.
You do not include punitive damages in your claim. The judge has absolute discretion in awarding these damages. If the judge feels that your injuries resulted from extreme conduct by the responsible party, he/she may award more damages to you to punish the responsible party even further.
Find a Skilled Personal Injury Attorney Near Me
Have you been in a car accident in Las Vegas and would like to know the types of damages available for you? A skilled personal injury lawyer could help with this and a lot more. Your attorney could help you understand your options, gather evidence, negotiate with the insurance company, and prepare a winning lawsuit against the responsible party. Your attorney will also ensure that you document your damages well, value them, and present them in court. At G. Dallas Horton & Associates, we have extensive knowledge and experience regarding Nevada personal injury laws. We’ll therefore ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. Call us at 702-820-5917, and let’s discuss the details of your case.