how to calculate pain and suffering

How Are Pain & Suffering Damages Calculated in a Personal Injury Case?

Those who suffer personal injuries in the Mobile, AL area are allowed to seek damages for both economic and noneconomic losses. Economic losses are those that you can assign a direct monetary value to, such as medical bills, lost earnings, and property damage. Noneconomic losses are those that are real but intangible and more difficult to quantify, and they are often referred to generally as “pain-and-suffering”.

Examples of cases in which an injured person may be able to recover damages include:

  • Auto accidents
  • Truck accidents
  • Motorcycle accidents
  • Pedestrian accidents
  • Boat accidents
  • Workplace accidents
  • Dog bites/animal attacks
  • Product liability accidents
  • Premises liability accidents
  • Medical malpractice
  • Nursing home abuse

If you or a loved one got injured through no fault of your own and because of someone else’s negligence, get in touch with the experienced Mobile, AL personal injury attorneys at Hedge Copeland as soon as possible. The insurance company for the other side will do everything they can to diminish the value of your claim or deny it altogether. The sooner you get an attorney involved, the better your chances of securing a favorable result.

What is Pain-And-Suffering?

Pain-and-suffering is a general term that is frequently used to refer to several different types of intangible losses, such as:

  • Physical Pain and Suffering: Personal injuries can leave a person with extreme physical pain in various parts of the body, such as headaches, neck pain, back pain, nerve damage, fractures, organ damage, and many others. The excruciating pain associated with these injuries can go on for several weeks, months, or longer.
  • Emotional/Psychological Distress: The emotional damage done by a Mobile personal injury can be just as severe as the physical damage, and it can last a lifetime. Examples include posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, fear, insomnia, and the grief that comes with knowing that you will never be the same again because of the injury.
  • Scarring and Disfigurement: Some accidents and incidents can leave a person scarred for life – literally. Long-term scarring and disfigurement can be very damaging to a person’s self-confidence as they often feel embarrassed and humiliated when they go out into public.
  • Disabilities and Impairments: Severe injuries can leave a person with long-term disabilities and impairments. Oftentimes, this will mean not being able to go back to their old job or participate in any other type of gainful activity. The loss of earnings because of this is quantifiable, but it is hard to put a value on the loss of someone’s ability to continue with a job or career that they have put so much of their life into.
  • Diminished Quality of Life: In addition to the inability to work, an injury can affect a person’s quality of life in a number of other ways as well. For example, if someone was an avid outdoors person who enjoyed running, hiking, and other types of physical activity, they may be unable to do any of it anymore because of the injury.
  • Loss of Consortium: A personal injury might be damaging to your relationships with others. For example, the injury could result in a loss of intimacy with your spouse.

How is Pain-and-Suffering Calculated?

As we have talked about earlier, it is very difficult to put a value on pain and suffering during a personal injury case, because each victim’s experience is unique and subjective. But that said, there are a couple of different methods that are commonly used to calculate pain-and-suffering damages. These are:

The Per Diem Method

Per diem means “per day”, and this method involves assigning a daily rate for your pain-and-suffering and multiplying it by the number of days between the date of your injury and the date that a doctor declares that you have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). The dollar figure that is assigned each day is often a point of contention between plaintiffs and defendants, and it is based largely on the severity of the injury.

The Multiplier Method

The multiplier method takes the total cost of repairing your injuries (i.e., medical expenses) and multiplies that figure by a number that is usually between 1.5 and 5. In some of the most severe cases, the multiplier can be higher than 5. As you might guess, the insurance company will push to keep the multiplier as low as possible, and this is another reason why you need a strong legal team by your side to fight for the full and fair compensation you deserve.

Suffered a Personal Injury in Mobile, AL? Contact Hedge Copeland for Legal Help

If you or someone close to you got hurt in an accident or event that wasn’t your fault, Hedge Copeland is ready to go to work for you! To schedule a free consultation with one of our seasoned Mobile personal injury lawyers, message us online or call our office today at (251) 432-8844.