Before you were ever hurt in an accident, you probably heard about pain and suffering. But what is it, and why does it matter?
Pain and suffering is a type of compensatory damages. In general, compensatory damages refer to the compensation you can receive for your physical, emotional, and financial injuries after someone causes an accident.
Pain and suffering, specifically, are a type of noneconomic damages. These losses aren’t visible, like a broken bone, and aren’t financial, like medical expenses. Instead, pain and suffering refers to the injuries no one can see, like physical pain, emotional suffering, anger, and grief.
After the crash, you may get online to learn more about pain and suffering in Texas. You’ll see pain and suffering calculators, and you might use them to figure out how much your pain and suffering is worth.
Unfortunately, the number you get from that calculator could be wrong by thousands of dollars. The only way to get an accurate estimate of your case and learn how to calculate pain and suffering is to talk with an experienced Dallas personal injury lawyer at the Francis Firm.
Damages That Go into Calculating Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering is a big part of any person’s compensatory damages in personal injury cases. That’s because almost any sort of physical, psychological, or emotional harm qualifies.
Working with a Dallas personal injury attorney helps you identify the injuries that qualify for pain and suffering compensation. Then you’ll have to provide evidence of these injuries with the insurance provider or in court.
Examples of pain and suffering damages include:
- Temporary physical discomfort and pain;
- Chronic pain;
- Permanent scarring or disfigurement;
- Permanent disability or loss of a bodily function;
- Negative emotions, such as grief, anguish, resentment, distress, humiliation, or embarrassment;
- Psychological trauma, whether or not it leads to a mental health condition;
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD);
- Reduced quality of life;
- Inability to participate in favorite hobbies;
- Inability to continue a relationship with your spouse (loss of consortium); and
- Inability to participate in the same way as a parent.
Give the Francis Firm a call if you believe you deserve pain and suffering compensation. You can file a lawsuit based on pain and suffering alone, but usually, pain and suffering is accompanied by physical injuries and economic damages.
How Much Is My Pain and Suffering Worth?
Every case is unique, which is why you shouldn’t rely on estimates or case results you see online. How much your pain and suffering is worth will depend on the type and severity of your injuries, whether you’ll deal with long-term or permanent injuries, and other factors.
A catastrophic injury victim typically receives more pain and suffering compensation than someone who suffers whiplash in a rear-end accident.
How Do You Calculate Pain and Suffering?
Unlike medical expenses and lost wages, you can’t calculate pain and suffering off a bill or pay stubs. The best thing is to talk with an experienced lawyer about a Texas pain and suffering calculation. It helps to understand the different ways to calculate pain and suffering and the factors that can increase or decrease the final amount.
Depending on your case, you may argue about pain and suffering with an insurer or in court. If you go to trial, the judge or jury calculates pain and suffering. If you have a jury trial, it’s the jurors’ job to decide how much your pain and suffering is worth.
Do Online Texas Pain and Suffering Calculators Give Accurate Settlement Estimates?
No, a Texas pain and suffering calculator can’t give you an accurate estimate for an insurance settlement or court award. Unfortunately, life and personal injury claims are too complicated for a simple calculation.
Too many factors influence personal injury damages, which is why you want an experienced trial lawyer on your side.
How Do You Prove Pain and Suffering?
Another factor in winning the maximum pain and suffering compensation possible is being able to prove your injuries. You can claim all the intangible injuries you want, but if you can’t provide support for them, you won’t win as much money as you hope for.
Some options for proving your pain and suffering include:
- Keeping a daily journal about your experience;
- Producing a “day in the life” video, which shows the obstacles you face;
- Your testimony;
- Testimony from family, friends, and others;
- Your medical records;
- A medical expert’s testimony;
- Mental health care records; and
- Testimony from your therapist, psychologist, or psychiatrist.
Our personal injury attorneys at the Francis Firm work closely with you to document your pain and suffering.
Is There a Limit to Pain and Suffering Damages?
Texas law caps pain and suffering damages only for:
- Claims against a government entity, and
- Medical malpractice cases.
If you’re filing a standard personal injury case, Texas law doesn’t limit how much you can receive. But that doesn’t mean pain and suffering damages are endless.
If you receive a significant award, the defendant can appeal and ask the court to lower it. That’s something to be aware of when doing what you can to maximize your settlement or court award.
How Can a Lawyer Help?
Getting a lawyer’s advice after a serious accident is invaluable. At the Francis Firm, we’ll talk with you about compensatory damages, including pain and suffering. We identify all your specific experiences that establish pain and suffering and explain how we’ll prove them to an insurer or court.
Our goal is to win you a fair settlement. That way, you can pay your bills, avoid debt, and feel some sense of justice. We know money can’t solve all of your problems after an accident, but it’s essential to keep you on the path to recovery.
Call the Francis Firm Today
If you’re ready to demand maximum compensation after someone causes an accident and your injuries, call the Francis Firm at 817-329-9001 or contact us online. We serve the Dallas-Fort Worth region and offer free, no-obligation consultations.