Personal Injury & Employment Damages
Damages are categorized as either special or general. In torts, special damages are measurable costs which can be itemized such as medical expenses, lost earnings, and property damages whereas general damages include less measurable costs such as pain and suffering, loss of consortium, the effects of defamation, and emotional distress. Personal injury torts result in both special and general damages. 12
Four things must be proven in order to hold a party or parties legally liable for injuries so damages can be awarded:
1.The party had a duty to act reasonably according to the circumstances.
2.The party breached the duty.
3.The party’s breach of the duty caused you to be harmed.
4.You suffered monetary damages due to the harm you suffered when the party breached its duty of care. 13
The amount of compensation for a personal injury will primarily depend on the severity of the injury. Serious injuries (such as broken bones, severed limbs, brain damage) that cause intense physical pain and suffering receive the highest injury settlements. 14
Aside from compensation for injuries, the injured person may get compensated for the lifetime effect of the injuries. An example, a keen cricketer suffers a wrist injury which prevents him from playing cricket during the cricket season. This is called loss of enjoyment of life and is compensable. Additionally, lost earning capacity (Future ability to learn) and future reasonably necessary medical expenses are recoverable. 15
In some cases, the injured might run his or her own businesses. The quantum assessment of the loss of profits (dividing into pre-trial and post-trial) requires forensic accounting expertise because the forensic accountant would consider various scenarios and adopt the best estimate based on the available objective data. 16
When evaluating the economic damages in wrongful termination litigation, the central question being addressed consists of two components: (1) what is the likely compensation (including benefits) that the plaintiff would have earned but for the alleged wrongful termination and (2) what is the likely compensation (including benefits) that the plaintiff can be expected to earn from alternate employment given the alleged wrongful termination. The amount of damages is simply the difference between the two compensation streams. 17
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