If you sustain injuries because of another person, one of the claims you can make are pain and suffering. Before you hire a personal injury lawyer you need to have a basic knowledge of what pain and suffering is all about. The following article seeks to give you a general understanding of pain and suffering.
Definition of Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering can be classified into two types:
Physical- this refers to the pain of your actual physical injuries. This includes not only the pain or discomfort you have tolerated to date but even the detrimental effects you may suffer in the future owing to the guilty party's (defendant) negligence.
Mental- is a by-product of your bodily injuries. It includes things like emotional distress, depression, sexual dysfunction, sleep disturbances, loss of appetite, mood swings, mental anguish, fear, humiliation, anger, shock, anxiety and failing to enjoy life. It is any negative emotion that you suffer because of the pain and trauma you have endured following your accident.
Mental suffering and pain includes not only the effects you have put up with to date but even the pain and suffering you may suffer in the future.
Example of Mental Pain and Suffering
You get into an automobile accident and get a severe concussion along with multiple broken bones. You become angry, depressed, have difficulty sleeping and lose your appetite because of the injuries you have sustained. You are referred to a therapist to help you cope. All these problems are related to your accident and you are entitled to compensation because of mental pain and suffering.
Calculating Pain and Suffering
In many jurisdictions, the juries are advised by the judge to rely on their experience and good sense in determining a reasonable and fair figure for compensating your pain and suffering. (For information on a lawyer, contact Christopher R Vanroden or another)
Most compensation figures are reached at by using a multiplier. This is where the figure of pain and suffering will be derived by multiplying your total lost earnings and medical bills- also called special damages.
Other factors affecting the amount for pain and suffering compensation include:
- Whether you are likeable
- Whether you are credible
- Whether your testimony regarding your injuries is consistent
- Whether you are exaggerating your claims of experiencing pain and suffering
- Whether the jury considers some of your statements to be lies
- Whether your physician supports your claims
- Whether your injuries and claims are considered reasonable by the jury
- Whether you have a criminal record