The short answer is that it means a lot of things! In legal terms, personal injury refers to any harm caused by someone else’s negligence. Personal injury cases can range from car accidents to accidents at the workplace, resulting in everything from burn injuries to traumatic brain injuries. When you’re harmed in a personal injury case, you’re usually entitled to the financial compensation for resulting medical bills, plus something called “pain and suffering.” Pain and suffering is especially complicated because it is considered subjective, as opposed to concrete medical expenses which can be calculated more easily.
Law.com defines pain and suffering as “the physical and mental distress suffered from an injury, including actual broken bones and internal ruptures, but also the aches, pain, temporary and permanent limitations on activity, potential shortening of life, depression and embarrassment from scarring, all of which are part of the “general damages” recoverable by someone injured by another’s negligence or intentional attack.”
Enjuris goes on to explain that when awarding pain and suffering, judges are attempting to measure an actual cash value regarding an individual’s sense of wellness. Enjuris says that “the concept of pain and suffering addresses the overall loss of comfort, happiness and opportunity that usually follows an accident.” It’s a complicated issue with a very subjective nature, which means it’s essential to have a competent and experienced personal injury lawyer fighting on behalf of the victim.
The amount of Pain and Suffering that someone is compensated for depends on the individual case and is determined by the courts with the help of a personal injury attorney. Below are some common examples of pain and suffering categories where personal injury victims could receive compensation:
- Emotional trauma, including post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression.
- Bodily injury and its lasting effects.
- Grief over the death of a loved one.
- Limitation of personal activities.
- Potential shortening of life.
According to LegalMatch, courts evaluate the following factors when awarding pain and suffering compensation:
- Evidence supporting the plaintiff’s claims.
- The type of injury, duration, and severity of pain.
- Pre-existing conditions of the plaintiff.
- The injury’s effect on the plaintiff’s enjoyment of life.
- Future issues that may arise in connection with the injuries.
Have you been injured as a result of someone else’s negligence? Chances are you’re entitled to some significant compensation to cover medical expenses as well as damages included in “pain and suffering.” You don’t have to fight this battle alone! Let the experienced legal team at The Ross Downs Law Firm support you and fight for your case. Call us at (318) 325-7677 (ROSS) or contact us online to get started.