Is It Possible To Recover Punitive Damages From A Car Accident Case?

Law Blog

In a typical car accident settlement, the victim will receive compensation for the damages he or she experienced to his or her car, medical bills for injuries, and loss of income. There are times, though, when a person is able to recover punitive damages from a car accident settlement; however, this is not overly common.

The definition of punitive damages

Punitive damages are awarded in many different types of personal injury lawsuits and cases, and they refer to money a person receives on top of the regular settlement amount. This money has one main purpose, which is to punish the at-fault person in the case, and it is important to understand that before you decide to seek compensation for punitive damages from your car accident case.

The basis of asking for punitive damages in a car accident case

Asking for punitive damages in a car accident case is not very common, simply because of the nature of car accidents, but there are certain reasons people fight for these damages. If, for example, someone in your car was killed in the accident and the other driver was drunk, you might want to seek punitive damages as a way of punishing that person for driving while under the influence. Another example would be if someone purposely ran into your car out of anger. In other words, there must be a good reason to ask for punitive damages; otherwise, you will have no chance of receiving money for this purpose. Some states even need proof that the other driver intentionally did something wrong that led to the accident occurring in order to offer punitive damages to the victim.

How to know if you should ask for punitive damages

The best way to find out what type of compensation you should ask for is through talking with a lawyer. A personal injury lawyer can help you determine what types of damages you experienced and what types you could be compensated for. If your lawyer believes that there is enough evidence to prove that the other driver intentionally caused this accident or failed to be responsible during it, then he or she may recommend asking for punitive damages.

You should always seek advice from a professional personal injury attorney when settling any type of car accident, as a lawyer will know the best way to handle the situation and what types of damages you could recover from the accident.


3 July 2019