How Much Compensation Can You Receive for Pain and Suffering?
Pain and suffering is a type of personal injury, one that’s cited in most personal injury cases. Calculating damages for pain and suffering can be complex, especially if the accident resulted the the plaintiff sustaining life-altering injuries. One of the reasons why car accident victims hire lawyers after an accident is so they can have the lawyer come up with a proper compensation figure for pain and suffering. A lawyer will take into account a variety of things and then arrive at a total figure that will be sought. But how is this figure calculated, and what is the basis for awarding damages for pain and suffering? For answers to these questions and other information regarding pain and suffering as it relates to accident cases, read through this blog.
What Is Pain and Suffering?
Pain and suffering is a type of personal injury, one that is usually remedied with general damages. Following an accident, if an accident victim is saddled with expenses because they’re injured, these are considered personal injuries. In the case of pain and suffering, there could be both physical and mental anguish associated with this.
Unlike economic damages that are awarded to redress fixed costs that are related to accident injuries, general damages figures tend to be larger because the injuries they’re meant to redress are often hard to quantify. Such is the case with pain and suffering. So let’s see how this is calculated by insurance companies.
How Is a Compensation Figure for Pain and Suffering Calculated?
Insurance companies often use a three-part formula to calculate damages for redressing pain and suffering. The first factor in this formula is the total damages figure (minus pain and suffering). After this figure has been established, the insurance company will try to rate the severity of your injuries, and this is very subjective.
But there is a method to determining a damages amount for pain and suffering. For example, if you’ve been debilitated for months by an accident-related injury, you’re going to get less than somebody who will be debilitated for years. Once the insurance provider determines how severe your pain and suffering is, they will rate it on a scale of 1 to 5.
Next, they’ll multiply the total damages figure by the rating they gave your pain and suffering. For example, if you racked up $40,000 in expenses because of an accident, and they gave your pain and suffering a 2 rating, you’ll receive $80,000. This seems simple enough in theory, but the problem is that insurance companies are infamous for low-balling pain and suffering, which is why you need to have a highly skilled and experienced personal injury lawyer on your side when you go to bring a claim, as this way you won’t get low-balled by the insurance company.
What Personal Injuries Are Similar to Pain and Suffering?
Other personal injuries are similar to pain and suffering. Disfigurement, for example, is another kind of personal injury, and attaching a monetary value to this injury is similarly challenging. An accident victim could pursue plastic surgery following the accident that left them disfigured, and the cost of this could be covered by damages, though they’d still be entitled to pain and suffering for having to endure a permanent disfigurement.
The same can be said for someone who’s lost a limb and now has a completely different way of life because of the accident. There are a range of personal injuries that general damages can cover, and if you hire a personal injury lawyer, they’ll know which of these apply so you can get maximum compensation.
Can Plaintiffs in a Wrongful Death Suit Seek Damages for Pain and Suffering?
Yes, beneficiaries to an accident victim who succumbed to their injuries will be able to sue for pain and suffering. They’ll also be able to sue for funeral and burial expenses, loss of a financial provider, loss of consortium, and other injuries that are associated with this kind of case.
Keep in mind: The statute of limitations for wrongful death suits is two years, whereas the statute of limitations for general accident cases is three years.
What Kind of Accidents Lead To Pain and Suffering?
A variety of accidents can lead to pain and suffering, including:
- Car accidents
- Truck accidents
- Motorcycle & bicycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Defective products
- Animal bites
Some of these are more associated with pain suffering because the injuries are more severe. For example, motorcycle accidents are often associated with significant injuries like traumatic brain injury and amputation, and fatalities are also common. If you survive a motorcycle accident and you’re left permanently disabled because of this, it’s very likely your car accident lawyer will sue for pain and suffering.
What Bodily Injuries Are Associated With Pain and Suffering?
A range of bodily injuries are associated with pain and suffering, and below are common ones:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Facial disfigurement
- Broken pelvis
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Crush injuries
Will a Lawyer Know How Come Up With a Monetary Value for Your Pain and Suffering?
After taking into account all injuries and property damage, a lawyer will be able to come up with a total damages figure. This will not be the figure they seek, as they’ll see a higher figure initially so they have something to negotiate down to. The goal is to negotiate down to a figure that is acceptable and still providing full compensation for your injuries.
For the longest time, finding a good personal injury lawyer was tough, but no more. We’ve simplified the process. Just call 1-800-HURT-511 and we’ll connect you to highly skilled and experienced personal injury lawyers who are multilingual and well-versed in the kind of case you’re looking to bring.
Call 1-800-HURT-511 now, as it’s likely time is running out to file.