Types of Damages in Civil Cases
When someone wrongfully injures you, South Carolina says your recovery should put you back in the position you were in prior to the injury. There is no eye-for-an-eye rule in South Carolina, and attorney Andrew Littlejohn Johnson has yet to invent or find a time machine. These are the reasons we have monetary awards: money is the only way to compensate you for what you have gone through.
As summarized below, these monetary recoveries are separated into two categories: (1) economic and (2) non-economic damages. In addition to these forms of recovery, there is a third category you may use to obtain money: punitive damages.
Economic Damages: These are calculable damages sustained due to your injuries. Normally, these come in the form of lost wages, medical bills, and diminished earning capacity.
Non-Economic Damages: These are damages most people don't think about, and they include everything negative that has happened to you because of your injuries. Most commonly, non-economic damages include pain. However, there are many other minor things that add up. For example, limitations, specific examples of changes to your life (e.g., not being able to pick up a child, scars and other permanent disfigurement, inability to perform hobbies, etc.), worry, anger, and frustration. These could exponentially increase the value of your claim. We use these damages (through our communication with you) to tell your story to the adjuster, other attorney, or jury.
Punitive Damages: These are meant to punish the wrongdoer. If someone drives drunk or acts in an otherwise reckless manner (e.g., running a red light or speeding in a school zone), this adds value to your case. The purpose of punitive damages is to punish the at-fault party and to deter others from acting the way he/she acted.
As you work through your case or claim, make sure you note your damages and keep records of everything. If you have questions, feel free to reach out to Andrew by phone or email. If you just want to focus on getting your health back, let us work your case for you and represent your interests. Once we are able to put these damages puzzle pieces into place, we are able to help our clients obtain proper justice.