Determining Damages in Kentucky Truck Accident Cases

May 15, 2024

Kentucky law provides for the recovery of several types of damages in truck accident cases, which we’ll examine in this article. At Saladino & Schaaf, PLLC, your truck accident lawyers in Paducah, KY, our job is to help ensure that you get the compensation you deserve for your injuries. By using our decades of experience to assess and analyze the facts of your case, we allow you to focus on your recovery.

In a previous article, Kentucky Car Accident Laws: Understanding No-Fault State, No-Fault Insurance, and Your Right to Sue, we discussed the circumstances under which you can pursue legal action and sue for damages in a no-fault state like Kentucky. We also explained what comparative fault is and how it may influence your right to compensation. As such, we will not be discussing these topics in this article, but we encourage you to read the article so you have a complete understanding of how these rules may affect your case.

Instead, this article will focus on the three basic categories of damages: economic, non-economic, and punitive.

Economic Damages

Economic damages are quantifiable losses that you have suffered because of the accident. They typically include medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage. 

Medical Expenses

Medical expenses include medical treatment, hospitalization, imaging technology (X-rays, MRIs, CT scans), ongoing care, physical therapy and rehabilitation. Future medical costs may also be calculated as part of your compensation when they can be reasonably predicted based on your current physical condition and your prognosis for recovery. These may include things like ongoing physical therapy or reconstructive surgeries, and additional follow-ups.  

Lost Wages

Lost wages include any job-related income losses due to your inability to work following the accident including your recovery time. Lost wages may also include economic losses if you cannot return to the same level of pre-injury work. This inability to continue on your previous career path may be caused by physical and/or psychological limitations directly caused by the accident. Changes you may be forced to make in the type of work you do, or whether you can return to your previous work schedule can also factor into your lost wages claim.   

Property Damage 

Property damage is the cost to repair or replace the vehicle and any other personal property damaged in the accident. 

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages are compensation for the losses you’ve suffered that impact your quality of life, often referred to as pain and suffering. Emotional distress includes compensation for anxiety, depression, loss of enjoyment of life, and other related psychological impacts.  If you are married, there may be a claim for loss of consortium, which is when damages are awarded to your spouse for their loss of your companionship and support.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are not designed to compensate you as much as they are to punish the wrongdoer and deter similar conduct in the future. In Kentucky, these damages are only awarded in cases where the defendant’s actions are found to certain factors such as gross negligence, recklessness or malice.

Calculating Economic and Non-Economic Damages

Calculating damages in a truck accident case requires a detailed analysis of the factors mentioned above and often requires the involvement of expert witnesses.

Economic damages are calculated based on actual financial losses. This may involve gathering documentation such as bills, receipts, and employment records. Estimating future losses, such as ongoing medical care or lost future earnings, typically requires expert testimony from medical professionals or economists.

Your pain and suffering from the accident are non-economic damages. While pain and suffering are inherently subjective, documentation from your treating medical professionals detailing your physical and emotional challenges, condition and progress may provide support for your claim. 

We work closely with experts that may include medical doctors, accident reconstruction analysts, vocational experts and financial analysts to examine your situation and quantify the impact of the injuries on your life. These experts may provide testimony to establish the extent of your physical and psychological injuries, any long-term effects you may suffer, causation, percentage of liability for each person involved, and the direct financial impact your injuries have on the quality of your personal life including your long-term career growth. 

How Our Truck Accident Lawyers in Paducah, KY Can Help

When determining compensation in truck accident cases, it’s important to know both the law and how it relates to your situation. Luckily, as skilled truck accident lawyers in Paducah, KY, we have extensive experience handling these types of cases.  At Saladino & Schaaf, PLLC we’ll help you understand your rights and explore your options. We’re committed to fighting for the compensation you deserve. Call us at (270) 444-0406 or (270) 753-1529 for a free consultation.  Our offices are conveniently located in Paducah and Murray.




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