You often hear about damages related to pain and suffering when it comes to personal injury cases. These damages are often more complex since pain and suffering are relative. Some people may bounce back quickly from their injuries and feel no ill-effects. Others may experience a negative impact for months or years after an injury has occurred, especially when the injury is debilitating.
Types of Pain and Suffering Damages
Many injuries cause a fair amount of physical discomfort on a day-to-day basis. This discomfort may only occur during the recovery process, or it may last a lifetime when injuries are severe. These effects are considered physical pain and suffering, as they stem directly from your injuries.
Mental pain and suffering are emotional effects related to your injuries. Your injuries may take away enjoyment of life due to the challenges you face. You may also experience effects such as anger or frustration, as well as the onset of depression or anxiety. Some people also develop PTSD-like symptoms after bad car accidents or other injurious events.
How These Damages Are Calculated
While economic damages, like lost wages, are relatively easy to calculate, there are no real guidelines for pain and suffering. A multiplier may be applied in some cases, which takes the total amount of medical bills and lost wages and multiplies them by some figure. Multipliers can be as little at 1.5 times those amounts, or as much as 5 times.
In other cases, a per diem, or per day, approach is used. A monetary amount is established and applied to every day you experienced pain and suffering as a result of an accident. If you felt unwell due to injuries incurred during a car accident for a period of four months, and your per diem amount is $120, you could possibly be awarded $14,400. The per diem amount is usually based on the earnings you would normally accrue each day while working.
Regardless of the method used, juries will be asked to look at different factors to determine the proper amount of compensation for pain and suffering. These factors often include:
- Your credibility
- Your medical reports
- Whether you’re thought to be exaggerating the effects of your injuries
- Your doctor’s statements
- The consistency of your statements regarding injuries
How to Pursue Damages for Pain and Suffering
Regardless of the details of your personal injury case, you must have skilled legal assistance to guide you through the process. With more than three decades of experience behind us, Martinez, Hart, Sanchez & Romero, P.C. can assist Albuquerque clients navigating even the most complex cases.
We provide support for car accident victims, those recovering from slip-and-fall injuries, and school injuries involving negligent staff and administrators. Schedule a consultation with our compassionate and dedicated attorneys by calling 505-343-1776. If you’d like more information, feel free to contact us.