March 28, 2014 12:13 am 

If you are injured due to someone’s negligence – What damages are you entitled to?

According to the Nebraska Jury Instructions, the purpose of damages is to put the injured party in the same position, so far as money can do it, as he or she would have been had there been no injury or breach of duty, that is, to compensate for the injury actually sustained. The amount of damages is solely up to the fact finder (Jury or Judge).

In Nebraska there are two types of damages: Economic (Special damages) and Non-Economic (General damages).

Economic Damages

  • The reasonable value of medical care and supplies reasonably needed by and actually provided to the plaintiff (and reasonably certain to be needed and provided in the future);
  • The (wages, salary, profits, reasonable value of the working time, business) the plaintiff has lost because of (his, her) (inability, diminished ability) to work;
  • The reasonable value of the (earning capacity, business or employment opportunities) the plaintiff is reasonably certain to lose in the future;
  • Reasonable Funeral costs;
  • The reasonable value of the plaintiff’s loss of the use of (his, her) property;
  • The reasonable value of the cost of repair or replacement of personal property.
  • The reasonable cost of obtaining substitute domestic services.

Non-Economic Damages

  • The reasonable monetary value of the physical pain and mental suffering (and emotional distress) the plaintiff has experienced (and is reasonably certain to experience in the future);
  • The reasonable monetary value of the inconvenience the plaintiff has experienced (and is reasonably certain to experience in the future);
  • The reasonable monetary value of loss of society and companionship suffered by the plaintiff and reasonably certain to be suffered in the future;
  • The reasonable monetary value of any injury to plaintiff’s reputation;
  • The reasonable monetary value of any humiliation the plaintiff has experienced (and is reasonably certain to experience in the future);
  • The plaintiff’s (husband’s, wife’s) loss of consortium. Consortium means those things to which a person is entitled by reason of the marriage relationship. Includes affection, love, companionship, comfort, assistance, moral support, and the enjoyment of (sexual, conjugal) relations.

Comments

In the determination of economic and non-economic damages, the jury or judge must consider the nature and extent of the injury, including whether the injury is temporary or permanent, and whether any resulting disability is partial or total.

Material taken from “NJI2d Civ. 4.00; “General instruction on Damages in a Tort Action – Economic and Noneconomic Damages”.

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This post was written by Timothy R. O'Brien