Ohio law caps some types of damages for victims hurt in Columbus truck accidents. This generally applies to non-economic damages. There may be exemptions for certain kinds of permanent injuries.
The best way to learn how the caps on damages could affect your financial recovery in your commercial vehicle accident case is to discuss it with a Columbus truck accident lawyer. At The Fitch Law Firm LLC, we provide free consultations so victims can learn more. Contact us today to get started.
What does Ohio Law Say About Financial Recovery After a Truck Accident?
Under Ohio law, there are strict limits on the non-economic damages a personal injury victim can recover. This cap is the greater of:
- $250,000; or
- Three times the value of their economic damages in the case
However, there is an overall limit of $350,000 for one plaintiff or $500,000 for multiple plaintiffs. Since non-economic damages are often valued at several times the victim’s economic losses, this could significantly affect their financial recovery after an accident.
Ohio law lists examples of non-economic losses that include:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of society
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of care
- Loss of assistance
- Loss of attention
- Loss of protection
- Loss of advice, guidance, and counsel
- Mental anguish
- Other intangible losses
This non-economic damages cap has specific exceptions for certain permanent physical injuries. An attorney can advise you if you qualify for one of these exemptions.
Non-economic damage caps are often controversial, and this rule is handled no different. It has been examined by the state courts numerous times. This includes two cases put forth by our law firm, Simpkins v. Grace Brethren Church of Delaware and Brandt v. Pompa. As of December 2023, the cap on non-economic damages stands in most instances.
What Are the Recoverable Damages in a Columbus Truck Accident Case?
When someone suffers injuries in a Columbus, Ohio, tractor-trailer crash, they often suffer serious or catastrophic injuries. They could be living with a spinal cord or traumatic brain injury or have other lasting impairments. Some require treatment, medical care, and support for the rest of their lives.
The recoverable damages after a truck accident in Columbus depend greatly on the injuries suffered and how they affect the victim’s life. Some common examples of covered costs include:
- Current and future medical care and support
- Missed work and related income losses
- Diminished earning capacity caused by lasting injuries
- Property damages
- Related expenses with receipts
- Pain and suffering and other non-economic damages
If you hire an attorney to handle your truck accident claim or lawsuit, they will identify and document your expenses and losses. This helps them put a potential value on your non-economic damages, too.
How Will the Cap on Truck Accident Damages Affect My Case?
You should understand that the Ohio cap on non-economic damages will not affect the money you can recover for your economic costs. Your monetary damages are those with a tangible value. This includes medical bills, income losses, and estimated future care costs. You can seek the total amount of your expenses in these categories.
The cap only affects non-economic damages. These are the intangible costs you paid because of your crash and injuries. They include the physical and psychological suffering you endured and the emotional losses that occurred.
If you suffered a permanent injury, you might be exempt from this cap. Those with minor injuries are unlikely to reach the cap. In these cases, it might not affect your case.
Who Is Liable for My Columbus Truck Accident Injuries?
When a commercial driver causes a big rig crash in Ohio, the victims can often hold the at-fault driver’s employer legally responsible. Victims do not usually sue individual drivers in these cases. Instead, they pursue compensation from a large trucking company or corporation.
Under Ohio law, these companies are vicariously liable for the negligent actions of their employees. When their employee is a truck driver, this could include their carelessness behind the wheel in causing a Columbus crash.
These companies usually have sizeable corporate liability policies. When there is a claim against them or a lawsuit against the insurance carrier’s policyholder, they want to pay out as little as possible. However, the policies usually have much higher limits than any individual driver would carry.
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What Should I Do If I Was Hurt in a Columbus Truck Accident?
If you were hurt in a Columbus truck accident, talking to an attorney who represents victims in these cases should be a top priority. A Columbus personal injury lawyer from The Fitch Law Firm LLC will provide a complimentary consultation. We have someone available 24/7.
Our team wants to talk to you about your case. We want to know the details of your injuries and hear your side of the story. This is the best way for us to assess your next steps and explain how we can help.
Many crash victims hesitate to contact a lawyer about their injury case because they do not think they can afford strong representation. We have a no-win, no-fee policy. Our clients never pay upfront fees before we begin work on their case. In fact, they only pay if we win a settlement or other compensation.
Discuss Your Columbus Truck Accident Case With Our Team for Free
The Fitch Law Firm LLC offers crash victims a free consultation. During this in-depth conversation, our team will review your case facts and assess your legal options. We want to ensure your questions are answered and you understand how we can help you fight for justice.
Contact us today online or via telephone to learn more. We are here when you need us most.
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