How Are Pain & Suffering Damages Calculated?
Personal injury payouts are comprised of economic and non-economic damages. Whereas the former can be totaled using receipts, invoices, paystubs, and other documentation, the latter doesn’t have any corresponding logs for calculating their extent.
Thankfully, there are two widely accepted formulas for quantifying non-economic damages. Read on to learn about each method for estimating pain and suffering damages, so you can apply them to your personal injury claim:
The Per Diem Method
The per diem method applies a standard rate to every day that you spend recovering from your injuries. If it took you three months to reach maximum medical improvement, for example, you would multiply the figure by 90 days.
As for determining what rate to apply, it should be a reasonable sum, like a single day’s wages or $150. Generally speaking, the more serious the injuries, the higher the daily figure.
If you spent four months recovering, for example, but you didn’t sustain any permanent disabilities, you must use a daily rate of $100. By multiplying it by 120 days, you would arrive at a figure of $12,000. After adding this to your total economic damages, you’ll have a starting point for the settlement negotiations.
The Multiplier Method
The multiplier method multiplies the actual damages, including medical bills and lost wages, by a factor that typically ranges from 1 to 5. The more severe your condition, the higher the multiplier you can justify using because the worse your pain and suffering likely is.
If your actual damages totaled $20,000, for example, and you were able to make a full recovery, you might not be able to justify using a multiplier higher than 1. In multiplying $20,000 by 1, you arrive at an additional $20,000 for your pain and suffering.
It’s important to keep in mind that while these formulas are widely used, their precise variables depend on a variety of factors. As such, you’re not necessarily guaranteed to recover the figure you arrive at just because you used one of these approaches to calculate it.
You can, however, increase your chances of securing a satisfactory settlement by starting a personal injury journal. Daily entries about your condition and how it’s hurting your quality of life will bolster your claim for pain and suffering.
Depending on the circumstances, it may also be wise to undergo a psychological evaluation. A seasoned expert can speak on the ways in which your injuries are affecting your mental health.
Discuss Your Case with a Personal Injury Attorney in Stuart
If you were hurt in an accident scenario through no fault of your own, contact Donaldson & Weston to find out if you’re entitled to compensation. Our tireless team will examine your case from all angles to determine how best to pursue the funds needed to make your life whole again.
We have recovered more than $100 million for injured parties and their families. To schedule your free, no obligation case review with a personal injury lawyer in Stuart, call 772-266-5555 or fill out our Contact Form.