Pain and Suffering Compensation

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What Is Pain and Suffering Compensation?

In a personal injury case, pain and suffering compensation refers to monetary amounts that are paid to the victim by the party that is liable for the injuries. These amounts are intended to compensate the injured party for pain or discomfort that was caused by the accident or injury. The type of pain usually referred to here is often a lingering, ongoing pain that persists many weeks or months after the actual incident occurred.

Compensation for pain and suffering is often called “pain and suffering damages.” This may be a distinct, separate amount from other types of damages such as those related to property damage or those involving punitive awards. Pain and suffering generally refers to physical pain, though in some cases it may also extend to emotional pain as well.

How Much Can a Person Recover in Terms of Pain and Suffering?

State laws vary in terms of the amount that a person can recover when suing for pain and suffering.  Some states impose limits on the amount of pain and suffering damages that can be issued in a single case. For instance, limits can range from as low as $350,000 to as high as $850,000, depending on the state. Generally speaking, most states limit the amount to well under $1 million. Also, the pain and suffering award must be reasonable in light of the nature of the injury and the circumstances of the case.

How Is Pain and Suffering Proven?

Pain and suffering can sometimes be difficult to prove. This is because by its nature, “pain” can be difficult to measure as there is often no physical manifestation of it. Due to this fact, pain and suffering calculations often take the following factors into consideration:

In many injury cases, an expert witness may be needed to help verify the existence and extent of a person’s pain and suffering. Other data can be used as well, such as hospital/medical records and accounts.

Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with Pain and Suffering Compensation?

Pain and suffering can sometimes be difficult to define and measure in an injury case. Also, state laws vary widely regarding the definition of “pain and suffering,” as well as limits on the amount of damages. You may need to hire a personal injury lawyer in your area if you need help with any type of pain and suffering issue. Your attorney can inform you of your rights under state laws, and can also advise you on how to proceed. Also, if you need to file a lawsuit and attend court hearings, your attorney can represent you during those times as well.

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Last Modified: 06-24-2015 02:29 PM PDT

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