Personal injury attorneys help clients pursue damages for pain and suffering in car accidents, pedestrian accidents, dog bites, motorcycle accidents, and other injury cases. While you might know that you can pursue compensation for pain and suffering, you might not know how much is reasonable in your case.
Every Case Is Different
Calculating a fair value for pain and suffering and other non-economic damages can be difficult if you don’t have experience estimating what your pain and suffering are worth. Non-economic damages are compensatory damages with intrinsic value to compensate for intangible losses, such as the following:
- physical pain and suffering
- loss of quality of life
- emotional distress
- mental anguish
- loss of consortium
However, each case is different, and non-economic losses can vary from person to person. For example, a younger person may not get whiplash as severely as someone in their 70s, but both could have chronic pain for the rest of their lives. While the pain might be higher for the older client, the younger client will likely have many more years where they will have to deal with the pain.
How to Calculate Pain and Suffering
Some personal injury lawyers and court systems use multiplier systems to calculate a fair value of pain and suffering. This involves calculating pain and suffering as a multiple of the total economic damages. Economic damages include costs from your injuries with a set value, such as medical bills, lost wages from time off of work, prescription drug costs, and transportation expenses to go to appointments.
When using the multiplier method, the court would determine where your injuries rate on a scale of 1.5 to 5, depending on the severity of your injuries, whether you suffered permanent damage, and how impactful the injuries are to your lifestyle. It would then multiply that number by your total economic damages to determine your pain and suffering award.
The other common calculation uses a “per diem” method for temporary pain and suffering. In this method, a jury determines the value of a day of suffering and multiplies it by the number of days a medical professional estimates it will take you to heal. So if it takes 18 months (540 days) for you to recover and the jury says each day is worth $200, your non-economic damages would be $108,000.
However, there is no way to say for sure what your pain and suffering are truly worth when using one of these formulas. Instead, your pain and suffering attorney needs to determine how your injuries impact your quality of life.
Impact of the Injuries on Daily Life
Suddenly suffering injuries in an accident due to someone else’s negligence can interfere with your lifestyle. Sometimes, it doesn’t seem like much, like when you must hire a lawn care professional instead of mowing and edging your grass. Other times, the effect is profound, like when you can no longer play pickup touch football with your friends on weekends or carry your child around on your hip or shoulders.
Consider how your injuries affect your ability to do things, including:
- household chores
- spousal intimacy
- basic movements
- work tasks
- running errands
- social activities with friends
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney for Pain and Suffering in Oklahoma
If you need a skilled pain and suffering attorney for your injuries, contact us to schedule a free consultation at one of our offices in Tulsa or Oklahoma City, OK. We can help with your insurance company claim. Call Bryan Garrett, PLLC, at 405-591-3508 or contact us online today.