Is There a Cap on Personal Injury Claims in North Carolina?

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A lawyer discusses caps on personal injury claims in North Carolina.

Damage caps, or the maximum sums you can receive for your injury, apply to certain types of personal injury cases in North Carolina. Damages that actually cover your out-of-pocket costs related to medical care, property loss, and other economic damages are never capped. Damage caps only apply in specific circumstances and only when other forms of compensation, such as non-economic or punitive damages, are also available.

Common Personal Injury Claim Types

Numerous events can result in personal injuries stemming from the negligence of another party. The following are some of the most typical personal injury claims:

  • Car crashes
  • Slip and falls
  • Abuse or neglect in nursing homes
  • Truck collisions
  • Construction site accidents
  • Pedestrian collisions
  • Medical malpractice
  • Dog bites

Any successful personal injury claim must prove that the incident was the result of someone else’s carelessness. For instance, a driver may have been speeding recklessly and caused a collision, or someone may have fallen as a result of a store owner’s failure to fix a water leak. It’s possible that a doctor failed to adequately supervise a mother during labor, resulting in the baby’s harm. There are many unique ways in which a party’s negligence may have contributed to an accident in which the injured party may be entitled to financial compensation.

A Personal Injury Claim’s Components

Even if an accident seems serious, it might not be sufficient to file a personal injury claim. You must be able to demonstrate each essential component in order to be awarded damages for a personal injury. These consist of:

  • Duty
  • Violation of duty
  • Cause
  • Damages

Duty denotes the obligation for the party to exercise caution. You must demonstrate that the negligent party was unable to fulfill their obligation. Then, you must demonstrate that their negligence contributed to the accident. Finally, you must present proof that the occurrence actually caused damages. These requirements must be met in a court of law. Your lawsuit will fail if you are unable to demonstrate each of these requirements. You must therefore be able to compile and present evidence to support these claims in court, should the case not be settled outside of court. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney to learn more about your legal options and discuss the unique circumstances surrounding your case.

Do I Have A Case For Personal Injury?

One of the most frequently asked questions following an injury-causing accident is, “Do I have a personal injury claim for compensation?” However, as the circumstances surrounding each accident are unique, the answer is not always cut and dry. One reason why a claim might not be valid is that there might not be enough evidence to prove negligence. If the proof is insufficient, your case will fail, and you risk wasting time and money on something that won’t produce the desired outcomes. You must also demonstrate that the negligent party was the reason for the accident or harm. There are numerous methods for gathering proof. A knowledgeable personal injury lawyer knows where to go for the evidence you need to win. Consult with a lawyer as soon as possible if you aren’t sure whether to proceed with a claim. In order to decide on the best course of action, your attorney will examine the matter and provide you with legal counsel as to the best course of action to take following an accident.

How Much To Ask for in a Personal Injury Settlement

If someone else’s negligence caused your injury, you should be entitled to compensation to pay for your medical bills, missed wages, and other related costs. You might even be entitled to claim damages for your pain and suffering, mental anguish, and occasionally punitive damages if the injury was severe (which are additional damages that are intended to punish a defendant for especially careless, willful, or egregious behavior).

In North Carolina, there is typically no limit on the amount you can win in a personal injury case. However, reports about what seem to be absurdly expensive verdicts in personal injury cases make the headlines because they are exceptional results in a North Carolina litigation.

Let’s take a step back, though.

Your potential financial recovery in the event of a civil action or settlement is referred to as “damages.” Making a plaintiff whole is the goal of tort law (when someone else’s fault resulted in your injury). In other words, the goal of the legal system is to put the victim of an accident back in the same financial situation as they would have been in otherwise.

Punitive Damages

In North Carolina, there is a cap on punitive damages. Punitive damages are limited in all personal injury cases to $250,000, or three times the amount of assessed economic damages, whichever is greater. It’s important to note that the NC damage cap law does not apply to claims involving drunk driving.

At Tatum & Atkinson, “the Heavy Hitters,” we are available to assist you if you have been hurt as a result of someone else’s negligence and have questions concerning the damages that may be recoverable. Please contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation with a knowledgeable North Carolina personal injury attorney.

Economic Damages

In the event that someone else’s negligence resulted in your injuries, you are entitled to compensation to help you recover from your financial losses as a result of the accident. Economic damages do not have a damage cap in North Carolina. Economic damages may consist of, but are not limited to:

  • Medical treatment costs, such as prescription drugs, assistive devices, physical or occupational therapy, hospital stays, doctor visits, and associated expenses.
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of future earning potential
  • Property loss, such as damage to your vehicle following an accident. .

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages are more difficult to assess and value than economic damages, as they are intangible costs. Non-economic damages in North Carolina may consist of:

  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of enjoyment
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium
  • And more

Despite being intangible, non-economic damages are essential to making an injured plaintiff “whole” once more. It’s one thing to receive compensation for the costs associated with treating an accident injury, but what about the stress and inconvenience that come with living with such an injury? Fortunately, in most personal injury situations, North Carolina does not impose a limit on the amount of non-economic damages.

Medical Malpractice Claims

In North Carolina, the amount of non-economic damages that can be obtained in medical malpractice litigation is capped, unlike in other personal injury cases. Statute 90-21.19, which was passed in 2011, states that the maximum amount of non-economic damages that a plaintiff may receive from defendants is $500,000 in medical malpractice cases. This damage cap was put in place to stop healthcare providers from becoming the target of pointless litigation.

Compensation in accident cases is intended to give monetary solace to the wounded parties while holding defendants accountable. Your choice of legal counsel is important, whether you are seeking compensation for emotional anguish or compensatory damages for lost income.

With more than 65 years of combined expertise, our knowledgeable North Carolina personal injury attorneys are delighted to provide devoted legal assistance on a contingency basis. This implies that there will be zero attorney fees unless we successfully obtain compensation for you.

Personal Injury Lawyers You Can Trust at Tatum & Atkinson

At Tatum & Atkinson, ‘the Heavy Hitters,’ we are aware of the lasting effects injuries stemming from accidents can have on our clients and their families. At Tatum & Atkinson, “the Heavy Hitters,” we are dedicated to fighting for fair compensation on behalf of victims who have suffered severe injuries in accidents. To schedule your free case evaluation right away, call (800) 529-0804 or contact us online.