You may have suffered severe injuries if you were the victim of a truck accident in Norfolk or Virginia Beach and may be worried about your expensive medical bills when you have no income while you recover from your injuries. When pursuing your claim against the negligent trucker and truck company, you should understand the damage caps in Virginia. An experienced Norfolk truck accident lawyer can explain these laws and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.
Damage Cap on Punitive Damages in Virginia
A damage cap reduces the amount of compensation that you can recover. Virginia has a cap on punitive damages in truck accident cases. You would be awarded punitive damages to punish the at-fault trucker and trucking company, not to compensate you, and are rare in truck accident cases.
To be eligible for punitive damages, you must show that the truck driver or trucking company acted especially recklessly or outrageously when causing your truck wreck. You may also receive punitive damages if the trucker was intoxicated when they caused the crash. If punitive damages are awarded, the cap is $350,000.
No Cap on Economic and Non-Economic Compensation
Virginia does not have a cap on economic or non-economic damages in truck collision claims, such as pain and suffering. You can recover the total compensation for these damages, up to the total amount of your actual losses. Types of damages you can recover include the following:
- Medical expenses. The negligent trucker and trucking company should reimburse you for all past and future medical bills you incurred due to your injuries, such as hospitalization, surgery, doctor appointments, physical therapy, and medications.
- Lost wages. If you were off work because of your injuries, you should be compensated for your past and future wages in your settlement. If you can no longer work due to your injuries, you may also be able to recover lost earning capacity damages.
- Pain and suffering. Another type of compensation you can recover is damages for the physical pain, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life that resulted from the truck accident. You need the assistance of a knowledgeable truck accident lawyer to determine how much you should receive for your pain and suffering.
- Property damage. If your motor vehicle or other property was damaged in the truck collision, you should receive the cost of repairs or replacement.