In Virginia, if a plaintiff in a personal injury lawsuit arising out of a car accident proves that the defendant is responsible for the accident, does the plaintiff automatically receive the amount sued for?

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The below information was written by our personal injury lawyers in Virginia Beach.

No. In Virginia, the amount sued for, known as the ad damnum, is the limit that the plaintiff can recover in a personal injury lawsuit, not the amount the plaintiff automatically receives if the plaintiff proves that the defendant was responsible for the car accident that caused the plaintiff’s injuries. A defendant in a personal injury lawsuit, whose negligence has been proven by the plaintiff, is only responsible for those damages which fully and fairly compensate the plaintiff for the damages the plaintiff sustained as a result of the car accident, and a plaintiff in a personal injury lawsuit has the burden of proving by the greater weight of the evidence each item of damage he or she claims and that each item was caused the by negligence of the defendant. For a discussion of the term “negligence” in personal injury cases in Virginia, click here. For a discussion of the items a plaintiff in a personal injury lawsuit can seek recovery for, click here.

During the opening statement or closing argument of a trial of a personal injury lawsuit, a lawyer for any party can mention the amount sued for to the jury, but the amount sued for is not considered evidence and juries are routinely instructed not to consider the amount sued for as evidence when arriving at a verdict. Plaintiffs’ lawyers can also request from the jury an amount that is less than the ad damnum, which is often done by plaintiffs’ lawyers in cases where the amount sued for proves to be higher than the realistic value of the plaintiff’s personal injury claim.

Questions regarding the amount sued for are specific to the individual personal injury case, and we encourage you to contact our personal injury lawyers in Virginia Beach.   We can advise the prospective client as to what an appropriate ad damnum would be in a personal injury lawsuit and whether it would be wise to advise the jury as to amount of the ad damnum. As in all personal injury cases, an experienced personal injury lawyer can also advise the injured person as to the value of the injury claim, can guide the injured person through the process of making a claim with the applicable insurance company or companies, and can represent the injured person in the litigation of the personal injury claim, if a personal injury lawsuit becomes necessary.

Waiting can hurt your case. To find out how our personal injury lawyers in Virginia Beach can help you, please contact us at (757) 486-2700.

Personal injury lawyers in Virginia Beach serving all of Hampton Roads.

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