Has someone or something caused you harm, or has someone close to you been harmed? Is it damage to property that belongs to you: for example the house or land , or is it damage to your natural person?
Do you think you have suffered an unfair behavior by someone or something that caused you an economic loss, and would you therefore like to ask for compensation for the damage? On the other hand, do you believe you are entitled to compensation for moral damages for the suffering you have had as a result of someone’s unjust behavior?
Now you are confused, you don’t know what to do, there are many, too many things and you don’t even know where to start.
We, your trusted lawyers, will be by your side, and we will explain to you step by step what you need to do to solve your problems.
Five things to do
Try to understand if you are in the presence of a recoverable damage, we indicate below some examples:
Have you received damage from someone or something?
Did you trip over the road because of an unmarked pothole?
Did you hurt yourself playing sports or other physical activity?
Have you suffered damage to your home or business? (e.g. flooding, falling objects from the neighborhood, fire).
Have you suffered damage as a result of a trip you took? A hotel, a flight, a boat trip…
Has a professional or someone you have entrusted a job damaged you?
Have you been defamed? Has anyone insulted you verbally, or in writing even on social networks?
To obtain compensation for damages from someone it is necessary to identify the relative responsibility. The first thing to make sure is if you can say with certainty that your damage is due to the behavior of that person.
You must be able to quantify the damage
- Do you have medical certificates that are able to reconstruct your damage?
- Do you have invoices?
- Do you have estimates?
- Do you have documents?
- Do you have any witnesses?
Take photos of the damages sustained or make videos of the events that have occurred, if these are visible. In the case of floods or violent material events, call the police or fire department so that they can draw up the relative report which you will need later.
Who can claim damages
All those who have suffered damage. The law states that anyone who has suffered unjust damage can claim compensation.
In order to be able to claim compensation, the following are required:
- an injury suffered;
- the unjust or illegal behavior of another person;
- the link that connects the unjust behavior of the subject with the damage suffered.
To give some examples, damages deriving from road, naval or air traffic, damages deriving from the responsibility of the dentist, the aesthetic doctor, the architect or any professional in general are recoverable.
Damages caused by things are also recoverable, such as for example those caused by flooding, fire, falling objects.
Damages that can occur on the street, in public places, or at home are also recoverable.
Damages that do not necessarily derive from the responsibility of another person, but for which one was insured, can also be compensated, for example the intervention covered by the health policy that the insurance refuses to acknowledge, or to the accident within the home that was insured.
What damages can you claim
The recoverable damages are substantially divided into PROPERTY DAMAGES and NON PROPERTY DAMAGES.
They are essentially those suitable for causing an economic loss. Financial damages are represented by anything that can generally be directly quantified and monetised. These damages therefore pertain to the assets and not to the person.
Financial damages are in turn divided into EMERGING DAMAGE and LOST PROFIT
As per its literal meaning, it is direct damage to assets: the money I will have to spend to restore the situation prior to the damage. So, for example, if we imagine that a fire has broken out and destroyed the house, the resulting damage is represented by the money I will have to spend to put the house back exactly as it was before.
The loss of profit, as in its literal meaning, is the loss of income deriving from work, whether freelance or clerical. So for example: I get hurt during a holiday organized by others and since I have a bar I won’t be able to work for a few months and I will lose the relative earnings. Financial damage must all be assessed on the basis of certain documents, therefore:
- if the loss of income or earnings is requested, it will be necessary to produce the tax return or a document showing the work that had to be carried out;
- if the damage sustained by a property is requested, it will be necessary to produce the invoices for the restoration interventions, or at most the estimates if the damage has not yet been repaired;
- if reimbursement of medical expenses is requested, it will be necessary to produce all the proofs of the expenses incurred.
They are substantially those not suitable to directly involve an economic loss, they are represented by everything that generally cannot be directly quantified and monetized. These damages therefore pertain to the person and not to the assets.
Non-pecuniary damages are for example:
Biological damage is the damage suffered to physical integrity, ie to one’s own body, and is quantified on the basis of a score established by the coroner Given that the loss of life corresponds to a total loss of 100% of health, the more a person will suffer damage, the higher the percentage score that will be assigned. The higher the percentage score that will be assigned to the injured party, the higher the amount of compensation to which the latter will be entitled.
With moral damage we mean the suffering suffered by the person as a result of the physical injuries sustained. The moral damage corresponds to a personalization of the biological damage which is carried out by the judge. It is assumed that the higher the physical damage, the greater the moral damage. To give an example, it is clear that the suffering that a subject will endure for having dislocated an ankle will be different from that which he will undergo for having broken his leg. For some judges non-pecuniary damage is considered single, for others non-pecuniary damage can be divided into other subheadings for example existential damage. On the items that make up the non-pecuniary damage, the judges have not yet declared themselves definitively, and therefore your lawyer will be able to advise you in the best way on what damages to ask for by evaluating the individual case.
Even if for some the psychic damage falls within the moral damage, it is preferable to consider it as a category of the biological damage. Psychic damage is the damage suffered by the injured party or by a relative following a serious harmful event, which involves an alteration of the subject’s psychic state. It is susceptible to evaluation as a percentage, just as happens for biological damage.
What happens in the event of death
In the event of the death of the person who has suffered damage, the DAMAGES borne by the deceased person and the damages borne by the heirs coexist.
Since compensation for damages in general embraces an extremely broad range of cases, it is not possible to generalize the damages that are due to the relatives of the injured party.
Since we are dealing with different types of damages and events that give rise to compensation for damages, the jurisprudence does not necessarily behave in the same way and the courts can therefore arrive at taking different decisions depending on the type of damages.
The general principle of the law is the non-accumulation of damages borne by the deceased person and those borne by his relatives. It will therefore be necessary to contact the lawyer of A.L. Assistenza Legale to receive, evaluating the individual case, the best information regarding the damages to be requested.
In general it can be said that the deceased person is entitled to compensation for pecuniary and non-pecuniary damages, these damages pass to the heirs.
The heirs (regardless of the damages due to the deceased, which we repeat pass as an inheritance) on the other hand have the right to moral damages deriving from suffering for having lost a dear relative, in addition to any biological damages where there has been a psychic damage generated by pain of the loss suffered. The heirs also have the right to financial damages, but they will have to prove the economic loss that resulted from the death of the next of kin.
The damages borne by the deceased person and those borne by the heirs must in any case be understood as a single damage, thus avoiding any duplication. As anticipated, your lawyer will be able to give you the best information in this regard.
With regard to moral damages, damages suffered by close relatives, spouse, children (even young ones), parents, brothers and sisters are considered due.
As far as distant relatives are concerned, grandparents, nephews, uncles, cousins, brothers-in-law, etc., it is necessary to demonstrate an emotional bond or coexistence with the person who has passed away. Different from both cases is that of the cohabitant for whom some precautions must be taken in the defense.
Psychic damage is a category that someone includes in moral damage but it would be more correct to include it in biological damage.
Psychic damage is that damage that the injured party or a relative suffers following a serious harmful event, which causes an impairment of the subject’s psychic state and which therefore can be evaluated by a psychiatrist with percentage points exactly as biological damage.
The heirs will also be able to claim the pecuniary damage derived from the income lost following the death of the close relative.
Consider, for example, a young child deprived of the support generated by his father who died prematurely in a single-income family, who will then be able to request compensation for the damages generated by the loss of economic income due to the loss of his father.