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Damages for “Pain and Suffering” in Personal Injury Cases: What They Are and How They Are Calculated.

Damages Go Beyond Bills and Paychecks

In personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits in Connecticut, as in most states, plaintiffs are awarded damages that are designed to compensate them for their losses and cover costs arising from their injuries. Some losses can be fairly easily quantified; medical costs, rehabilitation expenses, and lost wages are prime examples of what are called “economic damages.”

But if you’ve had to face the challenges and life-altering consequences of a catastrophic injury, you know that some losses don’t show up on a medical bill or a paycheck. Physical and emotional pain and anguish, inconvenience and embarrassment, the harm caused to your relationships; all of these are losses that the law tries to provide compensation for. These “non-economic” damages include what are known as “pain and suffering” damages.

Calculating Pain and Suffering Damages

Since receipts, pay stubs, and invoices aren’t the basis for calculating pain and suffering damages, they are usually determined based on the severity of the accident and resulting injury and the length of time it will take to fully recover.

There is no set formula for calculating pain and suffering damages in personal injury cases, but some of common elements considered include:

  • Anticipated limitations and restrictions on the person’s day-to-day life
  • Impact of injury or accident on person’s ability to sleep
  • Impact of injury or accident on person’s relationships with loved ones
  • Person’s  prognosis for the future
  • Cost of prescription medication to treat physical and mental pain

Evidence Needed to Prove Pain and Suffering Damages

Given the “difficult to quantify” nature of pain and suffering damages, the evidence that needs to be preserved and gathered to prove those damages can also be complicated.  One thing that is clear, however, is the more evidence you are able to produce to support your claim, the better your chances to recover adequate damages.

Types of evidence that are most effective in proving pain and suffering damages include:

  • Photographs of the injured party before and after the accident
  • Personal diaries or journals describing the victim’s physical and emotional state
  • Letters or testimony from friends and family explaining how the personal injury has negatively impacted the victim’s life
  • Proof of mental health treatment

Lawsuits and evidence may not be the first things on your mind if you’re just trying to make it day by day and week by week after a serious accident. But if you are experiencing pain and suffering as a result of an accident or injury caused by another person’s recklessness, it’s important that you take the time to preserve records, pictures, letters or other documentation that you and your lawyer can use to get you compensation for the pain and suffering you have endured and may continue to face for years to come.

Nugent & Bryant: Your Connecticut Personal Injury Law Firm

At Nugent & Bryant, we invest tremendous time, energy and resources in every one of our cases. We get to know each and every one of our clients extremely well. We take the time to meet with our clients, and to listen to them, really listen to them. We use innovative techniques which allow us to get to know our clients’ stories – their lives, their injuries, their personhood – from start to finish. This, in turn, allows us to tell the jury the truth of our clients’ story in a straightforward and honest way.

We have worked hard to build a reputation as one of Connecticut’s premier law firms advocating for accident victims’ rights. We are an exceptional law firm that has been achieving results for our clients over 30 years. If you have suffered a personal injury or catastrophic injury, call us today at (203) 795-1111 for a free consultation.