Minnesota Personal Injury Cases: What Damages Are Available?

July 25, 2022

If you’re the victim in a Minnesota personal injury case, you could be eligible to receive compensation for your suffering. Several forms of compensation may be available to you, depending on the severity of your suffering and the facts surrounding your accident.

In this blog post, you’ll learn about each type of compensation, also known as damages. You’ll also be provided with an example. If you have questions about any types of monetary damages you read about and if they apply to your personal injury case in Minnesota, schedule your free, confidential case evaluation. We’re here to help.

Types of Compensatory Damages

Compensatory damages are monetary awards available to victims of personal injury claims in Minnesota that the victims may qualify to receive because of their accident. Compensatory damages are awarded for actual damages the victim sustained in the accident. They are broken down into two categories: exceptional/non-economic damages and basic/economic damages.

Exceptional/Non-Economic Damages in Minnesota Personal Injury Claims

Exceptional damages give the victim of a personal injury claim repayment for harm done to them that does not come with a price-tag or a receipt. Personal injury accidents don’t just destroy property and cause physical harm. They can change your entire world. That’s why exceptional damages exist. The amount that you may receive depends on the severity of the injuries you sustained. Here are the exceptional damages available:

Pain and suffering is a monetary award given to help victims heal from the pain and suffering from the accident. We know that there’s no money that can account for how a victim or the victim’s family suffered because of an accident, but the court does try to help in this manner.

Emotional distress is another exceptional damage. If the victim or the victim’s family continues to suffer emotionally after the event, such as from nightmares, they may be eligible to receive a monetary award for emotional distress. A diagnosis of anxiety, depression, or the inability to perform specific tasks because of the accident may qualify for this award.

Loss of enjoyment of your life can be caused by the accident. From a legal perspective, this means the way that a serious injury affects the quality of your life. You’re unable to enjoy the things you did before the accident. For example, on Saturdays before the accident, you used to enjoy taking your children or grandchildren to the park and playing actively with them. Now, you can no longer participate.

Loss of opportunity. in a Minnesota personal injury case is awarded when injuries result in the loss of financial or business opportunities.

Loss of consortium is a monetary award given when a family relationship is changed because of an accident. It doesn’t necessarily mean someone died, although this claim may also be included in wrongful death lawsuits. It can also include loss of affection and/or sexual relations because of the injuries sustained.

Disability caused by the accident is another potential award. This may be because you cannot work temporarily or permanently due to the accident. 

Loss of a limb because of the accident is also another award that may be available. The compensation amount may depend on the limb or other factors, such as whether reconstructive surgery or a prosthetic is necessary.

Disfigurement is available in personal injury claims if you are disfigured in some way. However, the award amount is wholly dependent on the severity of the scarring and the necessary treatment. The Minnesota Courts understand that disfigurement can impact the quality of life of people.

Unjust hardship is available when the court decides that what you went through due to the accident was unjustly difficult or caused expenses so great that it created an unjust hardship on you. These don’t necessarily need to be catastrophic accidents that result in catastrophic expenses.

Now let’s look at the basic/economic damages available in Minnesota personal injury cases.

Basic/Economic Damages in Minnesota Personal Injury Claims

Basic damages are available in Minnesota personal injury cases where actual costs must be paid resulting from the accident.

Medical bills can be awarded. This includes, and is not limited to, emergency room visits, follow-up visits, visits to a specialist, x-rays, CT scans, the bill for the ambulance, prescription costs, and hospital stays.

In-home care for your injuries and recovery may also be awarded. This includes, and is not limited to, nursing care, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and home health aides.

Nursing home or rehabilitation facility care for temporary or long-term assistance may be awarded. The Court understands that when serious injuries occur, sometimes being at home to recover isn’t the best option…and that’s not the victim’s fault. In those instances, you and your family may be entitled to receive payment for the cost of a nursing home or rehabilitation services provided in a professional environment.

Repairs to your vehicle or property are available. If the victim’s vehicle or property is repairable, the court may enter an order to have the cost of repairs paid by the defendant.

Replacing your vehicle or property if it was destroyed or totaled out by insurance. Some accidents total the victim’s vehicle or property. When this happens, the defendant may be ordered to pay an amount that will replace the vehicle or property that was totaled out.

Missed work is an award that the Court may award. When victims miss work, it creates an avalanche of monetary issues through no fault of their own. The accident creates medical bills. The time off work then creates past due notices for their utilities, rent or mortgage, car payment, and the list goes on. This vital payment enables victims to get their lives back on track.

Diminished earning ability is an important award. Some accidents are so severe that the victims cannot return to work in their chosen field or in many other jobs. This award is used to help ease some of the financial sufferings they face because of their inability to work in the same or related fields.

Learn More about Minnesota Damages in Personal Injury Cases

If you have a personal injury case in Minnesota and want to learn more about the damages you may be eligible to receive, or if you have questions about anything you read in this article, we’re here to help. Schedule your free, confidential case review now.