Road accidents

Medical practice specialising in legal medicine

Following a road accident or any unlawful act which has caused unfair harm, it is first necessary to assess whether the harm can be connected with the reported event (causality), in order to move to the next stage of evaluating the damages.

When assessing damages under civil liability the following types are distinguished:
1) Financial damages (Article 2043 of the Italian Civil Code), i.e. economic damages, in turn divided into:
a. Direct damages (e.g. medical expenses paid and to be paid in future);
b. Loss of profit related to the specific reduced working capacity and hence the economic damages suffered as a result by the injured party pursuant to the injury suffered. When dealing with civil liability cases, it is appropriate for the medical-legal counsel to evaluate any possible impairment to the injured party's specific working capacity. This type of assessment is a speciality of the doctor working on the case.

2) Non-pecuniary damages (Article 2059 Italian Civil Code), i.e. damages to human life in itself, divided into three parts:
a. Personal injury damages, i.e. damage to the physical and mental condition of the individual in its various relational manifestations. This is evaluated according to a table, and it is the task of the medical-legal consultant to evaluate both the subjective and objective symptoms, as well as the findings uncovered by laboratory and instrumental diagnoses, to reach an evaluative summary which expresses the personal injury as a percentage that corresponds to a specific economic value.
b. Non-material damages of a transient nature; relates to the "feelings" and "suffering" endured by the injured party and/or relatives. This is evaluated on an equitable basis, but the medical-legal consultant can provide the judge with important biological and psychological elements to assess it. c. Existential damages, a new category of damages strongly supported by the Trieste school of Professor Paolo Cendon. They relate to "doing", i.e. they compensate the injured party for everything that he/she can no longer do, but which he/she used to do beforehand. This type of damages is linked to the lack and limits that the subject suffers in terms of gratification. It is evaluated on an equitable basis.

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