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17 Jun

How is Pain and Suffering Calculated in FL

Accident injuries often include major medical expenses, job pay loss, and long-term recovery. These are, more or less, easily measured for determining how much compensation should be received by the victim. However, in some situations, your situation could be eligible for compensation for your “pain and suffering.”

For the legal system, “pain and suffering” is a legal term that refers to both the physical and emotional stress caused by an injury. This can include physical pains such as soreness, aches, and limitations on your physical activity, and emotional pain can mean ongoing anxiety, fear, depression, PTSD, and insomnia. For any injury claim, pain and suffering is included in the general damages as a non-economic damage since it cannot be assigned a straightforward value.

Measuring pain and suffering can be difficult since there’s no universal standard of measurement. Each situation and case must be weighed individually. When a Florida court looks at an injury claim, they consider a number of factors specifically for pain and suffering.

Pain and Suffering factors:
  • Injured party’s age
  • General health, including pre-existing conditions
  • Injury degree and severity
  • Long-term and ongoing consequences of injury
  • Direct and indirect costs of the injury

Pain and suffering impact a person’s social, family, and work life. In some situations, their life may be irreversibly changed. Compensation for pain and suffering can reduce some of the stress of the injury.

Determining the actual compensation for pain and suffering can be challenging since these emotional repercussions often don’t come with medical bills or pay stubs. Most cases calculate the value of pain and suffering via the “multiplier” method. This means that the attorney will start with the economic damages and then multiply them by a certain number, generally between one and five. With the “multiplier” method, if economic damages are considered to be a dollar value of $150,000, then the multiplier method is applied, with a “pain and suffering” dollar value of $450,000.

Another way to determine compensation for pain and suffering is the “per diem” or per day method. This option assigns a dollar amount to every day based on your earnings. If you earn $150 per day at your job and your injuries cause you pain for 180 days throughout your treatments, your attorney may argue for a compensation of $27,000 for your pain and suffering. 

Proving pain and suffering is a crucial component to receiving compensation for your pain and suffering after an injury, and every case is different. The legal process often requires the aid of an attorney. Through a collection of specific types of evidence such as medical records and witness statements, an attorney builds a case to prove the legitimacy of your pain and suffering.

Types of Evidence to Prove Pain and Suffering

  • A medical professional’s opinion of injuries and their impact
  • Drug prescription history that’s related to pain, anxiety, or other injury symptoms
  • Testimony from friends and family about the injury’s effect
  • A mental health professional’s opinion of the state of mind
  • A personal recording of day-to-day suffering and experience post-accident

It should be noted that Florida views pain and suffering as a general damage claim in the event of an injury. Evidence helps to determine the value of that pain and suffering.

In Florida, there are no specific caps on the value of pain and suffering for compensation; however, an attorney will be best able to help you know what to reasonably expect according to your situation and case. Florida’s system of comparative negligence is often used to assign a percentage of fault to each party so you may also end up having a deduction to your claim value.

Every case of pain and suffering is different — that’s why working with a knowledgeable attorney is important to your case. Contact Carrillo Injury Law firm today for a free consultation.