How Much Compensation Can I Get for Pain and Suffering After a Personal Injury Accident?
There’s more to a personal injury case than compensation for tangible losses, such as the cost of medical treatment and the money a victim loses because they can’t work. There are also losses that don’t lend themselves to easy calculation. For example, a victim can’t produce receipts to show how much pain and suffering they’ve experienced or the mental trauma they’ve endured.
But how do attorneys put a dollar figure on these subjective losses? The attorneys with the Jones Law Group have extensive experience doing just that. If you choose our firm, we’ll work to make sure you obtain fair compensation for all of your losses – not just the ones that are easy to calculate.
What is Pain and Suffering?
Pain and suffering refer to the physical and emotional distress experienced by an individual due to a personal injury accident. It encompasses the physical pain, mental anguish, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life that a person may endure due to the injury. Again, medical bills and lost wages are objective. Pain and suffering are subjective. It takes a skilled lawyer to calculate these damages.
How is Pain and Suffering Calculated?
Attorneys and insurance companies use various methods to calculate pain and suffering damages in personal injury cases. Two common approaches are the multiplier method and the quality of life method.
The Multiplier Method
The multiplier method involves multiplying the total economic damages (such as the medical expenses and lost wages mentioned above) by a number. This number is typically between 1.5-5, but it can sometimes be higher. The purpose of the multiplier is to provide an estimate of the non-economic damages suffered by the victim. Specifically, the pain and suffering experienced as a result of the injury.
The specific multiplier used can vary depending on several factors, including the severity of the injury and the impact on the victim’s life. In most cases, the worse the injury, the higher the multiplier.
Suppose your injury is so severe that you’ll never be able to work or enjoy the activities you love. Your attorney determines your tangible or economic damages are $1 million. They’ll likely apply a multiplier of 5 because you’ve been badly hurt. This means your pain and suffering damages would amount to $5 million. The total compensation in the case, including economic and non-economic damages, would be $6 million ($1 million + $5 million).
It’s important to note that the multiplier method isn’t an exact science. It’s subject to interpretation. Different insurance companies, attorneys, or courts may have their guidelines or preferences for determining the multiplier.
The Quality of Life Method
The quality of life method focuses on the impact of the injury on your overall well-being and enjoyment of life, considering various subjective factors. These factors may include the following:
- The severity of physical impairment
- Limitations in daily activities
- Emotional distress
- Loss of independence
- Duration of the effects
Your lawyer may seek expert opinions from medical professionals, psychologists, or other relevant specialists to evaluate and quantify these factors.
Unlike the multiplier method, which uses a numerical factor to calculate damages, the quality of life method relies more on subjective assessments and expert opinions. It requires carefully evaluating the circumstances surrounding your injury and its impact on your life.
How Much Compensation Will I Receive for My Pain and Suffering Damages?
The amount of compensation for pain and suffering can vary significantly depending on the case’s specifics. These include your injury’s severity, the extent of medical treatment required, and more. There’s no predetermined formula. Each case is evaluated on its own merits.
What Other Types of Damages Can I Recover?
In addition to pain and suffering damages, personal injury victims may be entitled to other types of compensation, including:
- Medical expenses: This includes the cost of medical treatment, hospital stays, surgeries, prescription medications, rehabilitation, and future medical expenses related to the injury.
- Lost wages: If the injury prevents the victim from working or causes a loss of earning capacity, they may obtain compensation for their lost wages and the potential future income they would have earned.
- Emotional distress: In cases where the injury causes significant psychological trauma, the victim may be able to recover damages for emotional distress or mental anguish.
Contact Jones Law Group to Speak with a Personal Injury Attorney
A Jones Law Group attorney can assess the specific details of your case, evaluate the potential compensation for pain and suffering, and guide you through the legal process. We’ll provide expert advice and representation to help you pursue the compensation you deserve for your personal injury claim.