Rehabilitation and Accommodation
The plaintiff is entitled to rehabilitation and retraining expenses. These are also to the defendant’s benefit if they increase the plaintiff’s earning capacity or reduce his or her need for custodial care. They are detrimental to the plaintiff’s case if they create the impression that the plaintiff may recover from the injuries. Plaintiff’s attorneys do not stress the extent to which their clients might be rehabilitated. Insurance companies exacerbate this problem by not offering the plaintiff money for rehabilitation expenses immediately. The ideal situation for the plaintiff’s attorney is to convince the jury that the client might have been rehabilitated but for the callous refusal of the defendant to pay the claim, but now it is too late.
A plaintiff who has been disabled or requires special care is entitled to the cost of any housing modifications necessary to facilitate his or her care. These may be as simple as installing wheelchair ramps or as costly as buying the plaintiff a house to ensure that his or her medical needs will be met. The plaintiff is also entitled to the value of any property damaged as a result of the defendant’s conduct. This is usually an automobile, but it may be a house (plane crash cases), a horse, or any other property involved in the accident.