Ohio is one of many states that has damage caps for personal injury claims. These caps limit the amount of compensation injury victims can recover from the at-fault party. Unfortunately, this may prevent some injury victims from being able to recover the full cost of their damages from an accident.
The experienced Cincinnati personal injury lawyers at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy have extensive knowledge of Ohio damage caps and when they may apply to an injury claim. Schedule a free legal consultation to discuss your claim.
How Damages Are Capped In Ohio
There are a few damage caps that apply to injury claims in Ohio. These caps limit the amount of money a personal injury plaintiff can receive if he or she sues the defendant and wins the case.
Ohio law limits the amount of noneconomic damages that a personal injury victim can recover to $250,000 or three times the amount of economic damages, whichever amount is greater. However, noneconomic damages cannot exceed $350,000 if there is one plaintiff or $500,000 if there is more than one plaintiff.
If the victim suffered catastrophic injuries, there is no cap on noneconomic compensation. Catastrophic injuries include:
- Permanent and significant physical deformity
- Loss of the use of a limb
- Loss of bodily organ system
- Permanent physical functional injury that prevents the victim from being able to independently care for himself or herself and perform life-sustaining activities
There is also a cap on punitive damages that can be awarded by an Ohio jury. Punitive damages are special damages that are intended to punish the wrongdoer and prevent similar conduct in the future. Ohio caps the amount of punitive damages that a plaintiff can recover to twice the value of compensatory damages, up to a maximum of $350,000.
Damage caps do not apply to cases in which the state is the defendant, a personal injury case is brought against a political subdivision of the state or the claim is a wrongful death case.
Types Of Damages You Can Pursue
Damages in personal injury cases are often divided into two categories: economic damages and non-economic damages.
Economic damages consist of those damages that can be quantified and are often easier to prove, such as:
- Medical expenses
- Loss of wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Property damage
- Future anticipated medical expenses
Non-economic damages are not tied to a specific monetary loss like economic damages are and are not easily quantified. Insurance adjusters or a jury may use a multiplier to calculate the value of these damages or place a subjective value on these damages.
Non-economic damages include:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
If the accident resulted in the death of a loved one, the surviving family members maybe able to pursue economic and non-economic damages caused by the death, including:
- Funeral expenses
- Burial expenses
- Final medical expenses
- Loss of support
- Loss of services
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of companionship
Contact Oal For Help With Your Injury Claim
If you were injured in an accident and would like more information on whether damage caps may apply to your claim, call the personal injury team at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy.
We have extensive knowledge of state laws and the legal process. Your consultation with our attorneys is free of charge and there is no obligation to take legal action if we find you have a case. There are also no upfront fees.