Calculating Damages

Seeking Compensation After Your Car Accident

Seeking adequate and fair compensation as a result of a car accident can be a difficult process if you, like most people, do not have experience evaluating car accident injuries and claims. The main purpose of calculating and determining the amount of your damages is to attempt to restore you to the same position that you were in before the accident occurred.

Depending on your unique situation, you may be able to seek compensation for a variety of damages, including both special and general damages. Special damages are monetary losses that are directly related to your accident and injuries. These damages can typically be calculated to a specific amount. On the other hand, general damages are difficult to calculate and are often viewed from a subjective standpoint. Additionally, general damages are not guaranteed in every case. This section of the website will provide a general overview of the types of damages that may be available for you during the pursuit of your personal injury claim.

When preparing a demand package for compensation for the insurance company, it is important to consider any damages you have incurred as the result of the accident. This section of the website provides information to begin to consider the issues of how exactly the accident has affected you and your family. To begin calculating your damages, you should start with assessing the types of losses you have incurred as a result of the accident, including: medical expenses; lost wages; pain and suffering; loss of consortium; diminished earning capacity; out-of-pocket expenses; mileage; and future medical expenses.

One of the most common types of car accident-related damages are those that arise from seeking medical care and treatment. Expenses arising from seeking medical care and treatment are often referred to as “medical expenses.” Medical expenses, while the most common, such expenses are often the most difficult to prove in a motor vehicle accident claim. Your injuries may be as minor as some stiffness in your neck, or as significant as a total permanent disability. Regardless of how minor your injuries are, it is essential that you seek appropriate medical care as soon as possible. Moreover, it is important to remember that the insurance company may challenge the reasonableness and necessity of your claimed medical expenses.

Medical expenses arising from a car accident may include the following: EMS/Ambulance charges; emergency room care; diagnostic testing (X-rays / CT / MRI); primary care; physical therapy or chiropractic care; cognitive therapy; neurological treatment; and required medical equipment. Another important aspect to be mindful of is that you should always follow your doctor’s specific instructions regarding your medical care and treatment.

Lost wages after a car accident are common for accident victims after being placed out of work. Should you decided to make a claim for lost wages as part of your personal injury claim, you may be able to seek compensation for the wages lost due to being out of work for your injuries, for time you’ve had to spend going to doctor’s appointments, or for the period of time that you were unable to perform duties required for employment. An important note is that lost wage claims can be difficult to calculate and prove when a person is (1) self-employed, (2) an independent contractor, (3) paid commission, or (4) using vacation time for paid time off work.

Out-of-pocket expenses are considered as a miscellaneous category for all other costs incurred as a result of your automobile accident. Out-of-pocket expenses may include: prescription medication, medical equipment, parking costs, and other expenses you would not have incurred but for the accident and your resulting injury. For a successful claim, remember to keep each and every receipt for all purchases made related to your personal injury claim.

If you suffered injuries in an accident that resulted in several doctor’s appointments, you are spending money on gas that you would not have otherwise be spending. If you want to seek reimbursement for these costs incurred, it is important to appropriately document your travel-related expenses for your medical treatment.


Considering your future required medical expenses is a subjective process. Future medical expenses consider the costs associated with ongoing treatment in the future as a result of your personal injury claim. Calculating future medical expenses and anticipated care can be confusing for accident victims and difficult for doctors. If you have sustained significant medical injuries as a result of a car accident, it is important to speak to your doctor about any future medical care, treatment, and other expenses which may be needed. Future medical expenses are typically reserved for the most serious personal injury claims, as it is often difficult to substantiate the necessity of future medical care.

If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident, no matter how seriously, calculating and identifying your damages is one of the most important parts of your claim, second only to actually getting needed treatment. For personal injury claims, damages can be hard not only to calculate but also to identify because “damages” encompasses so much more than simply just medical bills. As the victim of a car accident, you’ve probably experienced an array of hardships due to the accident because it caused more than just physical harm, but how do you translate intangible damages like pain and suffering into definite amounts?

In calculating your damages, the first step is to identify what injuries or losses you have suffered from the accident and how you suffered them. Once you have identified all of the damages that may pertain to your particular claim, the next step is to calculate their value. Although your opinion on the value of these damages and your adjuster’s opinion on the value of these damages will likely differ greatly, if you reasonably and adequately calculate your damages, you are in a better position to present the best claim possible. This section of the website is designed to help you assess the many different damages you may have suffered and calculate them to a reasonable amount, such that the insurance company is likely to settle your claim.

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