18 Jan 2014

“Pain and Suffering” Damages: What Are They and When Are They Awarded?

Personal Injury Victims Are Entitled To Damages for Their Injuries

Arkansas residents injured in car or semi-truck accidents, slips and falls, or accidents involving defective products must to learn to cope with their new physical limitations while facing mounting medical bills, reduced income and the prospect of chronic pain. These personal injury victims are entitled to financial compensation from the person or entity whose carelessness caused their injuries, including compensation for the pain and suffering they have experienced and will have to deal with going forward.


“Pain and suffering,” as used in personal injury cases, describes the physical, mental and emotional stress a personal injury victim suffers after an accident or injury. It has been medically established that long term chronic pain that restricts the activities of a person over a long period of time may eventually cause chronic depression. The goal of pain and suffering damages is to provide enough financial assistance to make the victim feel whole again. Although no amount of money is sufficient to compensate a personal injury victim for a lifetime of discomfort and misery, pain and suffering damages provide a small measure of assistance with meeting growing financial obligations.


How Does A Court Quantify Pain And Suffering Damages?

The value of pain and suffering damages in personal injury cases is subjective, and every case is different. While the cost of current medical treatment can be established with receipts and an economist can quantify the value of lost earnings, pain and suffering damages are more difficult to calculate. The victim’s attorney must convince the court of the nature of the injury, extent of pain, and how long the pain and suffering is likely to last.

Some of the factors a court considers when attempting to quantify pain and suffering damages include:


  • Cost of prescription medication to treat ongoing physical and mental pain
  • Projected limitations and restrictions on victim’s daily routine
  • Effect of injury on victim’s sleep patterns
  • Impact of injury on victim’s close relationships
  • Victim’s long-term prognosis

The credibility of the victim and witnesses is key to proving and maximizing pain and suffering damages. Credible witnesses who have observed the limitations of the injured party and can explain them to the judge or jury can often be more convincing in proving pain and suffering damages than the injured party himself. A spouse is often an effective witness because she can identify problems that have surfaced since the accident or injury that the victim himself may not want to acknowledge. Credible expert witnesses, typically doctors or nurses, are also key to establishing the extent of the pain and how long it is expected to last.


Kendall Law Firm, PLLC Can Help Maximize Your Recovery for Pain and Suffering

The personal injury attorneys at Kendall Law Firm, PLLC have more than 60 years of combined experience helping victims establish and obtain compensation for the pain and suffering caused by the carelessness of others. We will carefully review your case, evaluate and prepare credible witnesses for trial, and develop a litigation or settlement strategy that will maximize the outcome in your case.


This website has been prepared by Kendall Law Firm, PLLC for informational purposes only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.  

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