How to Prove Pain and Suffering Damages in a Personal Injury Claim

Car accidents, workplace injuries, slip and fall accidents, and dog bites are common causes of personal injuries that result in physical and emotional pain and suffering. Pain and suffering cover physical injuries as well as emotional or mental agony. A victim might experience both after an accident, such as discomfort, emotional trauma, aches and pains, and affliction.

When serious injuries are involved, there is often a long road to recovery that comes with significant financial obligations. If you were injured in an accident, a dedicated lawyer can help you gather the necessary evidence to prove pain and suffering damages in a personal injury claim.

What is Covered under Pain and Suffering in an Injury Claim?

questionsCar accidents are the number one cause of personal injuries in the United States. Workplace accidents, defective products, property injuries, and animal attacks also frequently result in injury, pain, and suffering. Specifically, these accidents may cause:

  • Traumatic brain or spinal cord injuries
  • Burns and lacerations
  • Broken bones and muscle injuries
  • Disfigurement
  • Loss of a limb
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Permanent disability, such as paralysis
  • Death

Not all accident victims experience immediate physical pain, however, as the sudden impact of a car crash, for example, can cause internal trauma that surfaces weeks later.

Pain and suffering also includes emotional pain or mental anguish caused by an accident. Individuals whose ability to enjoy life is limited by ongoing doctor visits or rehabilitation sessions or who cannot participate in the same hobbies, jobs, or activities because of an accident may be able to pursue damages for pain and suffering with the help of an experienced personal injury attorney. Additionally, someone who lost a loved one in an accident may be able to recover compensation for their emotional suffering.

Examples of emotional pain and suffering include:

  • Grief
  • Depression
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Loss of companionship

What Proof is Needed for Pain and Suffering Damages?

In order to prove the scope of your suffering after an accident, an attorney must gather evidence to show how your pain and suffering—and current lifestyle—is a direct reflection of the accident. Evidence to prove pain and suffering damages in a personal injury claim includes:

  • Medical records and recovery documentation, such as exams and x-rays
  • Psychiatric records
  • Photographs of the accident and resulting injuries
  • Police or first responder reports
  • Testimony from witnesses who know you and see the difference
  • Anything else that demonstrates how your life may have changed or been affected.

Calculating Pain and Suffering Damages

Lost wages and the cost of medical treatment, surgeries, and therapy are considered economic damages, meaning they have a quantifiable value. While there is a burden to prove the charges are reasonable, this can be established by a number of ways.

Pain and suffering is a non-economic damage, meaning it has a subjective value. In other words, pain and suffering damages do not have a set value in personal injury claims and must be calculated on an individual basis.

Talk to a Local Personal Injury Lawyer

An attorney can pursue non-economic damages for your pain and suffering, as well as economic damages to cover your medical costs, lost wages, and future medical expenses. Simmons and Fletcher, P.C., Injury & Accident Lawyers have been representing accident victims for over 40 years. Schedule a free case evaluation with Simmons and Fletcher, P.C. to share your story and discuss a potential personal injury claim today.

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