You hear the words “pain and suffering” a lot when it comes to personal injury claims. Victims often wonder if these damages are worth pursuing.
How much do you request when seeking pain and suffering damages? How do you avoid asking for too much or too little?
We have asked attorney Alaina Sullivan about this scenario. Here is what she had to say:
What Is Pain and Suffering?
Pain and suffering is a legal concept that describes injuries a victim suffers as a result of an accident. These injuries usually include more than just physical pain. Emotional and mental injuries, including depression, anxiety, fear, insomnia, and more are lumped into pain and suffering.
These damages can be tough to calculate as they tend to be very subjective in nature, but most insurance companies utilize a specific calculation method in determining what types of damages are fair.
The Multiplier Method
This method of calculating pain and suffering takes the “actual” damages you suffered, meaning medical bills or lost wages, and multiples them by a certain number. This number is called a multiplier and is based off a number of factors.
In past years, insurance companies would use a multiplier of three to calculate pain and suffering, but they have gone away from this practice in recent years.
Most attorneys and insurance companies have a software program to make these calculations. The software will assign your multiplier depending on the severity of your injuries, aggravating factors and the length of time your recovery is expected to take.
The type of treatment you have had to seek because of your injuries is also considered in assigning a multiplier.
The Daily Rate Calculation
Another method of calculating pain and suffering is to use a daily rate. Under this method, the attorney or insurance company will use a daily rate or “per diem” amount and assign that figure to each day you suffer from the injury. The daily rate can be tough to assign, and it depends on a number of factors.
The income you earned daily could be how the daily rate is calculated and is often the most common way to assign a rate. However you decide to come to a daily rate, you will need to be able to explain to the court why you chose that pain and suffering figure.
Most judges will question an arbitrary figure.
Contact an Attorney Today
Most attorneys will consult with you first free of cost before you make your decision on pursuing litigation. If you have been involved in a car accident, you should contact an attorney today to discuss your case.
A licensed personal injury attorney will be able to evaluate your case and determine if you have a claim against the other party’s insurance company.
To receive the compensation for your medical bills, property damages, and pain and suffering, you should speak with a personal injury attorney in your area today.