Damages in Virginia Nursing Home Abuse Cases

Damages in Virginia nursing home abuse cases such as economic are damages that can be calculated. Medical bills and lost wages are easily quantifiable. However, non-economic damages are more difficult to quantify. Those might include pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment, and things of that nature.

If you are interested in filing a claim for the harm you or a loved one have experienced, contact a distinguished nursing home abuse attorney who can help you calculate an appropriate recovery.

Defining Non-Economic Damages

The economic damages, like the medical bills that are incurred, are right in front of someone. Virginia law requires that those are an admission of evidence and that a person receives a judgment no less than the amount of those medical bills if they deemed the nursing home or their agents to be liable.

Non-economic damages in Virginia nursing home abuse cases typically represent the pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of 10 years of one’s life. By painting the best picture possible to allow a fact-finder to understand what the injured party went through due to no fault of their own, an attorney can eloquently help restore justice as the best defense possible.

Importance of Non-Economic Damages

They are important, because they may represent the return that their client needs to allow them to receive alternative care. These may represent the take-home that they have to provide some sort of repayment for those or rapid actions they went through due to no fault of their own. They are to make sure that they are restored to the best extent possible. It is very important.

Capping Non-Economic Damages

There is a way to try bringing more money to the table by bringing appropriate individuals and corporate entities to the table, filing a lawsuit to the appropriate jurisdiction, and seeking input from every pool available.

The cap on non-economic damages in Virginia nursing home abuse cases is also known as tort reform. The purpose of this cap is to make sure that a fact-finder, specifically a jury, does not award an outrageous amount because they are extremely sympathetic to the plaintiff.

Caps on non-economic damages are disfavored by plaintiffs’ attorneys and favored by defense attorneys. Insurance companies have caps, because they limit their client’s exposure. Then they can calculate their basic premiums based upon exposure versus failure to exposure.

Role of Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are damages that exist in civil cases to punish the wrongdoer for their actions and send a message to the rest of society that they are reprehensible and should not be tolerated. Punitive damages in Virginia nursing home abuse cases only exist in certain trials, when the individual or corporate action shows a willful and wanton disregard for the rights of others.

When this punitive standard is met, the judge or jury has the option of assessing punitive damages. Punitive damages are not available in every case and cases are a type of pleading provided during the evidentiary stage of hearing to trigger the possibility of future damages.

Punitive damages may also be available for certain potential acts of abuse. When that potential act shows as willful and wanton disregard for the rights of others, it may trigger the availability of punitive damages. It depends on a case-by-case basis.

Calculating Punitive Damages

Punitive damages in Virginia nursing home abuse cases are calculated by the judge or jury that makes a decision as to how much to award for punitive damages. They will use some guidance offered by counsel in the form of evidence or arguments. There is no special rule as to how and when to award punitive damages.

Role of the Court

There are a variety of factors that a court will use to determine punitive damages, including whether or not punitive damages are appropriate, whether or not the individual or the corporation act with conscious willful and wanton disregard for the rights of others. When these punitive damages are appropriate, the factfinder will be instructed that they can award it.

Benefit of Having an Attorney

It is important to hire a Virginia injury attorney to handle damages because punitive damages must first be pled. It is kind of like a locked box in that in every case there is no guarantee that the attorney is going to be able to open that box and figure out what to decide. It is different from medical damages, which can be medical bills and special damages. Punitive damages have a heightened plea requirement and specialized knowledge is needed to know what must be shown and how it must be shown to trigger the potential for awarding punitive damages. 

Damages in Virginia Nursing Home Abuse Cases