Types of Recoverable Damages in a Product Liability Lawsuit
If a faulty product caused your injury, you could recover compensation for the damages you incurred through a product liability lawsuit. Types of damages could include medical care costs, lost income, diminished earning capacity, loss of consortium, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. An attorney can provide legal guidance through the case and identify the damages for which you can seek compensation.
What Are Recoverable Damages?
Damages are money the court awards to someone who sustained an injury because of someone else’s negligent actions. In a product liability case, there are several people or entities the injured party could hold accountable for their injuries. They may include the following:
- The product designer
- The product manufacturer
- The product distributor
Depending on where in the manufacturing process the product became defective can determine liability. Once the injured party establishes the responsible party, they can seek to recover their damages.
Possible Recoverable Damages in a Product Liability Lawsuit
When someone sustains an injury because of a product liability issue, they can recover compensation based on their losses. There are various losses someone could sustain as a result of their injuries. Typically, losses fall into two categories, monetary and non-monetary losses.
Monetary losses, also called economic damages, compensate the injured party for the actual money they lost because of their injuries. On the other hand, non-monetary losses, also called non-economic damages, compensate the injured party for subjective losses that aren’t quantifiable.
The goal of economic damages is to make the injured party financially whole again. They could have lost a significant amount of money because of their injuries. Seeking compensation for economic damages can help a victim avoid financial struggles in the future from their losses.
Types of economic damages an injury victim could recover include:
- The costs of out-of-pocket medical expenses such as doctor’s visits, hospitalizations, surgeries, or other medical procedures. Medical expenses could also include the cost of rehabilitative therapies such as physical or occupational therapy.
- Future medical bills if the injury victim will require medical treatment after they settle their claim or lawsuit
- Income the injured party lost because of their injuries. Many injury victims must miss work while recovering or receiving treatments, but they could recover the income they weren’t able to earn through a product liability lawsuit.
- Future income if they cannot return to work because of their injuries. They may also recover compensation for lost work benefits such as medical benefits or retirement benefits.
- End-of-life care expenses. You may have incurred funeral and burial expenses if your loved one died from their product liability injury.
Attorneys can identify the economic damages the injured party could recover and determine their value by reviewing receipts or bills. It is critical to keep any documentation regarding injuries, as it can serve as proof as to how much of a loss the economic damages were.
The goal of non-economic damages is to compensate the injured party for the emotional and physical toll their injuries took on them. Just because they aren’t associated with the monetary loss doesn’t mean that the injured party doesn’t deserve to receive something for these losses. Examples of non-economic damages could include:
- Pain and suffering, which may account for the physical pain, anguish, inconvenience, and discomfort that the injuries caused. Typically, a medical professional can provide documentation proving the injuries caused physical pain.
- Emotional distress, which may include any negative psychological impacts the injuries caused them. Examples of negative psychological impacts could include anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, fear, sleep issues, and anything else that impacts their mental health.
- Surviving family members could recover damages if their loved one passed away from their injuries. They may recover loss of consortium, care, or companionship.
Since non-economic damages are not associated with a monetary loss, an attorney can help calculate their value. Typically, they use formulas and evaluate their economic damages to arrive at a figure. They can then provide evidence as to why the injured party seeks compensation for these losses.
Proving Negligence to Recover Damages in a Product Liability Lawsuit
To recover damages in a product liability lawsuit, the injured party must prove the other party acted negligently and caused their injuries. In doing so, they must show evidence that the liable party satisfied all four elements of negligence.
- Duty of care: The person or entity responsible for the injuries owed the plaintiff a standard level of care, indicating that they would provide a product that they believed was safe.
- Breach of duty: The person or entity responsible for the injuries breached their duty by manufacturing or selling a product that was not safe.
- Causation: The injured party must show a link between the breach of duty and their injuries. They have to prove that had the other party not breached their duty, they would not have sustained injuries.
- Damages: The injured party must prove they sustained damages because of their injuries. Damages could include medical bills, future medical bills, lost income, future lost income, diminished earning capacity, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
You may benefit from hiring a product liability attorney to represent you. They may collect evidence, prove negligence, and fight for your right to recoverable damages while you recuperate from your injuries.
Connect With an Attorney to Learn About Recoverable Damages in a Product Liability Lawsuit
For more information about the types of recoverable damages in a product liability lawsuit, consider connecting with a law firm. One in our network can evaluate your case at no cost. Through this consultation, you can learn more about your legal options and the next steps to take to recover the compensation you deserve. Contact a mass torts attorney today by calling 1.844.44TORTS (1.844.448.6787) or filling out the contact form. Then, you can get started on your journey towards recovering compensation and holding the liable party accountable for your injuries.