There are two types of pain and suffering: physical pain and suffering, as well as mental pain and suffering.
Physical pain and suffering is the pain derived from the plaintiff’s actual physical injuries. Not only does it entail the pain and discomfort which the claimant has endured on the date of the accident, but also the lingering effects which he or she will likely suffer in the future due to the defendant’s negligence.
Mental pain and suffering results from the plaintiff being physically injured, but it is more of a residual effect of those bodily injuries. Mental pain and suffering includes things like mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of life, emotional distress, anger, fear, humiliation, shock, anxiety, and depression.
When it comes to determining a monetary value for pain and suffering in a personal injury lawsuit, there are no specific guidelines to figure out how much to award a plaintiff. In most states, judges often instruct juries to use their rational sense and experience to decide what would be a fair amount to compensate the victim.
In most cases, the “multiplier” method is used to determine pain and suffering, where pain and suffering is calculated as being worth some multiple of the injured person’s total medical bills and lost wages. The multiplier is considered to be somewhere between 1.5 and 4, meaning that the pain and suffering is 1.5 to 4 times the value of the claimant’s special damages.
However, the multiplier method is only a rough estimate and does not apply in all personal injury cases. It is most effective in minor injury cases, where the total damages are less than $50,000.
On the other hand, there is the “per diem” method, which is a formula based on daily suffering. For example, if you suffered a knee injury in a car accident, then you would gauge your daily pain and all of the daily activities you cannot perform due to your injury. You would then determine a compensation cost to each day and multiply this figure by the number of days you’ve been injured.
But in all cases, the more serious the injuries, the greater amount of compensation you can expect for your pain and suffering. Keep in mind, visiting a doctor will substantiate your personal injury claim and demonstrate that you were, in fact, suffering symptoms which require medical treatment.
If you suffered an injury caused by a negligent party in MA, contact our Worcester personal injury attorney at the Law Office of Robert W. Kovacs, Jr. today.