What is “pain and suffering” in the context of a personal injury lawsuit?

pain and suffering

Unfortunately, individuals may sustain injuries that cause physical and mental trauma due to negligence. The physical and mental pain victims endure is known as their pain and suffering. Victims are legally entitled to recover monetary compensation for this non-economic loss. Non-economic damages are subjective losses that have no price value. If you have been injured due to negligence, reach out to one of our qualified and determined Santa Clara County Personal Injury Attorneys. Our firm is committed to helping our clients recover fair compensation for their pain and suffering. 

What is “pain and suffering”?

In the context of a personal injury lawsuit, pain and suffering refer to the physical and psychological trauma a victim suffers due to their injuries. The effects of these types of trauma can last for a long time.

Physical pain and suffering

Physical pain and suffering refer to an individual’s actual injuries. Victims may experience:

  • Traumatic head and brain injuries
  • Neck and back injuries
  • Organ damage
  • Orthopedic injuries
  • Burns and lacerations
  • Fractures and sprains
  • Amputations
  • Paralysis

Mental pain and suffering

Mental pain and suffering refer to a victim’s psychological and emotional trauma they’ve sustained from their injuries. Due to their injuries, victims may experience:

  • Mental anguish
  • Emotional distress
  • Sleep issues
  • Humiliation and fear
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of consortium
  • Disfigurement

How is it calculated?

To determine the monetary value of pain and suffering in the context of a personal injury lawsuit, two methods are commonly used. Those methods are:

  • The multiplier method. The multiplier method adds a victim’s economic damages and multiplies that number by a multiplier between one and five. To determine the multiplier used, an individual must determine the degree of pain they have endured due to their injuries. If a victim’s degree of pain is on the lower end they will normally choose a multiplier of one or two. If their degree of pain is on the higher end a multiplier of four or five is used. For instance, if a victim’s economic damages add up to $12,000 and their degree of pain warrants a multiplier of 4, their damages would amount to $48,000. The equation looks something like this: (total # of economic damages x degree of pain).
  • The per diem method. The per diem is another equation used to determine a victim’s pain and suffering. However, this method does not involve economic damage. Instead, the per diem method assigns a dollar value to each day a victim suffers due to their injuries. After that number is determined it will be multiplied by the number of days a victim has endured pain from their injuries. For instance, if a victim places a $200 value on each day and suffered for 100 days, the total would amount to $20,000. The equation looks something like this: ($ value for each day x duration of pain).

If you or someone you love has been injured due to another person’s negligence, reach out to our dedicated attorneys today. We are on your side. Our firm can assist you in recovering reasonable damages for your pain and suffering.