How to Calculate Pain and Suffering Damages Suffered in a Car Crash or Personal Injury Matter
If you get hurt in a car wreck or other accident, the physical injuries you sustain create calculable financial losses in terms of medical bills and lost wages, but a physical injury is also accompanied by physical pain, emotional distress, mental anguish, physical impairment and other kinds of less easily calculable harm, including loss of consortium, love, society and affection for damages sustained by the uninjured spouse. As provided by Texas law, personal injury lawyers, insurance companies, and the courts classify these as “non-economic” damages.
When you’ve been hurt by the negligence of another, you are entitled to recover compensation for your pain and suffering, mental grief, and physical impairment in addition to your economic damages like doctor bills and loss of income. But how do you put a dollar value on harm like this? Read on to learn how non-economic damages are handled in personal injury settlements and jury verdicts in Texas. If you’ve been hurt in a car, truck, or motorcycle crash in Beaumont, Houston, or throughout Texas statewide, contact Gilbert Adams Law Offices to speak with an experienced and successful Texas personal injury lawyer.
Understanding Non-economic Damages
Non-economic damages such as physical pain and suffering, mental grief and anguish and physical impairment are those damages above the paid or incurred medical bills and lost wages incurred as a result of a bodily injury, whether from a wreck, dangerous product, work accident or premises accident. These types of damages are not easily quantifiable like medical bills or lost wages, but are real and under Texas law are compensable by the negligent party.
Methods of Calculation
There are multiple ways that attorneys, insurance companies, judges and juries might calculate non-economic damages. Under Texas law, the jury may award damages on a per diem basis or a fixed sum, as determined by the jury based on the evidence admitted at trial.
Factors Influencing Non-economic Damage Calculations
Texas law holds it is within the discretion of the jury to determine the reasonable value of non-economic damages based on the evidence admitted at the time of trial. In other words – the amount of these damages depends on the evidence that the Court allows the Jury to consider. The main factors to consider include the following:
Severity of Injuries
Severe, permanent or long-lasting injuries typically result in higher pain and suffering damages. The nature of the injury, the required treatment, and the duration of recovery play significant roles in this calculation. Injuries that result in permanent disability or disfigurement can result in considerably more for elements including physical suffering and pain, mental grief or physical impairment that would likely be awarded for injuries that completely resolve or do not have a permanent impact on your life.
Impact on Daily Life
The extent to which the injuries affect your daily activities and lifestyle contributes to the calculation. This includes an inability to engage in hobbies, perform household tasks, or participate in family life activities.
Emotional and Psychological Trauma
The emotional and psychological impact, such as anxiety, insomnia, and fear, is also considered. These effects are often documented through mental health professional assessments.
Existing health conditions might complicate the calculation, as insurers may argue these conditions contribute to your pain and suffering.
Documenting Your Non-Economic Damages
There are many ways to document your pain and suffering, which will help build a strong claim whether negotiating a settlement or presenting a case to the jury. These sources include:
- Medical records indicating the nature and extent of injuries
- Mental health professional assessments for emotional and psychological impacts
- Personal journals or diaries tracking your daily pain and emotional state
- Testimonies from family, friends, or colleagues about the impact on your life
Call Gilbert Adams Law Offices for Legal Representation in Texas
The process of calculating pain and suffering damages can be challenging and complex. Insurance companies often aim to minimize these payouts by disputing the severity of an injury or its impact on the victim. Having an experienced personal injury attorney is vital to your success. Gilbert Adams Law Offices, with a profound understanding of Texas law and commitment to clients, can be instrumental in ensuring that your pain and suffering are accurately evaluated and compensated.
Every personal injury case is different, which is why having an attorney with a broad range of experience in motor vehicle crashes is instrumental to ensuring you get a fair amount of compensation for all your damages. If you or a loved one has been hurt in a crash in Beaumont, Houston, or Texas statewide, reach out to the Gilbert Adams Law Offices by calling 409-835-3000. Your consultation is free, and there is never any fee until after we recover compensation on your behalf.