How Are Pain and Suffering Damages Proven in Court?
Posted in Lawsuit on February 1, 2022
When filing a civil lawsuit, Missouri residents typically claim two types of compensation: economic damages and non-economic damages. While economic damages involve the financial losses that the victim experienced, non-economic damages involve physical and emotional pain and suffering.
Unlike financial losses, proving pain and suffering can be difficult. These damages are intangible and do not have much documentation attached to them. However, there are several methods that attorneys take to prove pain and suffering in court and help clients secure the compensation that they deserve.
What Is Pain and Suffering?
After suffering an injury, you may experience severe physical and emotional injuries that impact your quality of life and day-to-day activities. Through a lawsuit, you can recover compensation for all of the trauma, pain, and anguish that you experienced.
Examples of pain and suffering damages include the following.
- Chronic pain
- Permanent disability
- Mental anguish
- Emotional distress
- Depression and anxiety
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Cognitive changes
- Loss of quality of life
Proving Pain and Suffering in Court
Unlike economic damages, you cannot use receipts or invoices to prove your right to pain and suffering compensation. However, there are pieces of evidence that you can leverage to establish the anguish and trauma that you experienced.
To establish pain and suffering, it is important to document as much evidence as possible that details how your injuries has impacted your life. Pieces of evidence may include the following.
- Medical evidence, such as bills and records
- Personal documentation, such as notes and journals
- Testimonies from friends and family members
- Notes from doctors, therapists, and mental health professionals
- Expert witness testimony from someone experienced in personal injury
A personal injury lawyer can help you gather the evidence that you need to establish your pain and suffering. Equipped with this information, you can advocate for the highest possible award to compensate for the trauma that you experienced.
How to Calculate Pain and Suffering Damages
Because pain and suffering losses do not have a financial value attached to them, it can be challenging to calculate the full extent of your losses. However, there are two common formulas that attorneys and insurance companies often use to estimate pain and suffering.
- The Per Diem Method: You will be assigned a dollar value for every day that you are unable to work due to your injuries. Your pain and suffering award will be equal to the number of days that you are incapacitated times your per diem amount.
- The Multiplier Method: You will be assigned a number based on the severity of your injury. Minor injuries have a lower multiplier, more severe injuries have a higher multiplier. Your pain and suffering award will be equal to your multiplier times the full value of your economic losses.
Speak with a Missouri Personal Injury Lawyer
Without the right evidence, experience, and formulas, proving pain and suffering in the courtroom can be a challenge. As a result, it is important to work with an attorney who can establish your right to this form of compensation.
A Kansas City personal injury lawyer will understand how to prove pain and suffering. He or she can gather the necessary evidence, enlist the support of expert witnesses, and craft a compelling case in your favor. As soon as possible following your injury, contact an attorney to discuss your next steps.