Were you affected by the Palm Beach Gardens tornado on April 29, 2023?

In the Aftermath of Hurricane Ian, has your settlement exceeded the 90-day threshold?
Klotzman Property Damage is Available 24 Hours a Day, 7 Days a Week to Help in Your Time of Crisis.

When Can You Demand Punitive Damages in Your Personal Injury Case?

If you have been injured in any sort of accident, you may be entitled to damages. For a lot of our clients, that isn’t enough. They want the defendant to be punished for what they did. One thing our Hollywood personal injury lawyers have learned is that most accidents are just that – an accident.

However, there are times when the courts agree that the defendant should be punished. If that’s the case, they may award you punitive damages.

Courts in Florida Are Reluctant to Award Punitive Damages

Most judges steer clear of awarding punitive damages in personal injury cases. Our personal injury attorneys in Hollywood have handled hundreds if not thousands of cases.

When we do decide to demand punitive damages, it’s for a good reason. We don’t do this unless we believe the defendant acted either maliciously, recklessly, or with gross negligence.

Hollywood Injury Lawyers Do Not Normally Demand Punitive Damages

Typically, when we file our client’s initial complaint, we demand certain damages. For the most part, if it’s a personal injury case, we demand the following damages on our client’s behalf:

  • Medical bills and future medical bills
  • Lost wages and lost future income
  • Pain and suffering

On the off chance that the defendant acted without any regard for human safety, we may demand punitive damages. However, this happens much less than you may think.

Not only do we have to convince the judge to award these damages. But we also have to make sure the defendant has the assets to pay them.

What Kind of Damages Will Your Personal Injury Attorney in Hollywood Demand?

As briefly stated above, when we file a personal injury case on behalf of a new client, we have an idea of what kind of damages we’ll demand. This doesn’t mean we file a boilerplate lawsuit.

However, over the years, our Hollywood injury lawyers have learned what types of damages the courts are willing to award in these types of cases. Below, we’ll discuss the various types of damages we demand in most of the cases we handle in more detail.

Medical Bills and Future Medical Bills

Obviously, if you’re seriously hurt in your accident, you’ll need extensive medical care. If this is the case, you’ll be entitled to compensation for your medical bills. This includes things like your ambulance ride, hospital bills, and doctor’s copays.

Depending on whether you’ll need future medical care, you may deserve compensation for future medical treatment. Your personal injury attorney in Hollywood will have to submit proof of what kind of care you’ll need. They’ll also have to submit documentation showing how much this care will cost.

Lost Wages and Lost Future Income

If you miss a significant amount of time from work, you can demand reimbursement for lost wages. You will be expected to use any available sick and personal time before you can demand these damages.

In addition to lost wages, you can also demand damages for lost future income. For example, if you can no longer work because of your accident, you’ll earn a lot less money than you would have.

Your Hollywood injury lawyer can demand the difference between what you would’ve earned and what you will now receive on disability.

personal injury lawyer in Hollywood.

Pain and Suffering

In most of the cases we handle, pain and suffering damages tend to make up the lion’s share of your settlement. If you suffered extensive injuries, you will more than likely be entitled to damages for pain and suffering.

Pain and suffering damages are meant to compensate you for any mental or physical anguish you suffered as a result of your accident. You’ll need a doctor to testify or sign an affidavit confirming the physical pain you dealt with.

You will also have to testify about any other pain and suffering you experienced.

Punitive Damages Are Intended to Punish the Defendant and Send a Message

It is not easy to convince the court that you’re entitled to punitive damages. In most cases, the judge will refuse this request. This is because they reserve punitive damages for cases where the defendant acted egregiously.

Some of the cases in which our clients did receive punitive damages were those involving some or all of the following elements.

The defendant acted in gross disregard for your safety. Imagine that you were involved in a car accident. The other driver was drunk at the time and was driving 100 mph in the wrong lane.

The other party was grossly negligent. Imagine that you fell and got seriously injured while looking at a home that was for sale. The real estate agent failed to tell you that there was construction going on in the home and you suffered an injury as a result.

The defendant acted maliciously. These cases are few and far between. Even when your personal injury attorney in Hollywood thinks the defendant acted maliciously, it’s hard to prove. An example of this would be when your child’s daycare worker purposely burned their hand on a hot stove.

Reach Out to Our Personal Injury Attorneys in Hollywood to Find Out What Your Case Is Worth

One of the first things a new client asks our personal injury attorneys in Hollywood is how much their case is worth. While there’s no way to know for sure, we can usually give you a fair estimate. It all depends on how strong your case is.

It also depends on the seriousness of your injuries. When we file your initial complaint, we will make a demand for damages. We can only demand damages for what you suffered. We also need to back up our claim for damages with solid evidence.

Contact our office today so you can schedule your free, initial consultation. We will review your case and answer any questions you may have. If possible, we’ll also give you an idea of what your case is worth.

Read More Related Articles