Being in a car crash is a brutal experience. Not only is it painful and dangerous, but it also comes with various expenses and losses. If you’ve been hurt in a car crash caused by someone else’s negligence, the law in Ohio gives you the right to ask the driver at fault for compensation. You should not be required to pay for another person’s mistakes, and you can fight for your rightful compensation in court.
Your rightful compensation
You are entitled to a settlement or verdict if the person who caused the car accident was negligent or irresponsible. This includes breaking traffic laws and doing anything that is distracting while driving. If your injury was a result of someone else’s irresponsibility, you can ask them for rightful compensatory damages in court, which are divided into two categories:
- Economic damages: compensation for your lost wages, medical expenses and car repairs. There is no limit on the amount. Many lawyers refer to these damages as “blackboard damages” because they can easily be determined and written down.
- Noneconomic damages: compensation for your pain and suffering or loss of companionship, care, love, assistance, instruction, protection or advice. In Ohio, noneconomic damages are capped for non-catastrophic injuries at $250,000 or three times the economic damages, up to $350,000. If you suffer catastrophic injury, there is no limit on the amount you can receive. Most catastrophic injuries fall under the category of a permanent substantial physical deformity.
In cases where a driver is reckless, which includes texting and driving, you may be able to ask for punitive damages. Punitive damages can be up to double the amount of compensatory damages.
You must also know that the court could reduce the amount of your compensation if you had some responsibility for the accident. How much the court could lower your compensatory damages would depend on the percentage of fault you had in an accident. Also, you must file a personal injury claim related to a car crash no more than two years after the accident date, if the crash was in Ohio. Otherwise, you will lose your right to your compensation.
You don’t have to pay for something another person caused. Much of the value in hiring a lawyer lies in the understanding of your true losses. We call these losses human losses and the court calls them damages. We will not underestimate your human losses and will fight for full and fair value in every case.