How Is Pain And Suffering Calculated In A Motorcycle Accident Case?
Injuries from a motorcycle accident have two types of compensation: economic and non-economic. The economic damages cover the monetary losses, such as lost wages and medical bills. Non-economic damages, on the other hand, cover emotional damages, sometimes referred to as pain and suffering.
A motorcycle accident lawyer can help you calculate the pain and suffering damages per your injuries. In this post, we will look at how pain and suffering is calculated in a motorcycle accident case.
What is Pain and Suffering?
Pain and suffering is a legal term used to explain how injuries suffered from an accident impact your life. It includes any physical, mental, and emotional pain you endure due to the accident. You are able to claim pain and suffering damages if you suffered from bodily injuries as a result of your accident. Below are some examples of damages that fall under pain and suffering:
- Physical pain
- Mental anguish
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Loss of enjoyment of life
In some cases, pain and suffering can also include insomnia if the pain from the injuries keeps you up at night. It can also include any embarrassment you have to deal with because of the damages.
Other pain and suffering damages can involve a wrongful death case. These can include:
- Loss of companionship
- Anxiety and depression
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
How are Pain and Suffering Damages Calculated?
Insurance companies may use different methods to calculate pain and suffering. However, a motorcycle accident lawyer can help you reconcile the approaches to get a good total. Some lawyers use an injury claim calculator to determine the total damages.
The two common ways lawyers calculate pain and suffering damages are the multiplier method and the per diem method.
The Multiplier Method
The multiplier method totals the amount of present and future expenses, including medical treatment, lost wages, and any property damages. This number is then multiplied by a number between 1.5 and 5. 1.5 represents a shorter pain and recovery level, while 5 is the highest severity level.
In other situations, such as with paralysis or brain injuries, the economic damages can be multiplied by a greater value. Some of the factors used to determine the multiplier are:
- The severity of the injuries involved
- Length of the recovery time/ permanency of the injuries
- Potential for future complications
- Disruption of the usual routine/ daily life
- Treatment and diagnosis by hospitals
This method also considers how responsible you were for the accident. The amount can be lower if you share partial liability for the accident. The downside of the multiplier method is that it does not factor in that people with the same injuries may have very different emotional pain and experiences.
The Per Diem Method
Using the per diem method, you can get money for every day of your recovery period. This method multiplies the number of daily wages you would receive if you could work by the total recovery time.
The per diem method is not ideal if you suffer long-term injuries. This is because it is much harder to calculate the correct settlement figure for an extended period than it is using the multiplier method.
How Can I Prove Pain and Suffering After a Motorcycle Accident?
Adequate proof is necessary to receive pain and suffering damages. It is easy to prove your physical pain and hospital visits through medical bills, but pain and suffering involves a lot more. You can work with a motorcycle accident lawyer to compile sufficient evidence of the accident’s impact on your life.
If you want to show this impact, you can:
- Keep a personal journal that expresses your physical and emotional feelings after the accident.
- Provide documentation from friends and family members illustrating how the injuries affect your daily life.
- Provide evidence showing mental health treatment. This can include proof of treatment for PTSD, anxiety, or depression from the accident and your injuries.
Your lawyer can give you more advice depending on your case and tell you what kind of evidence you need. They can also help you calculate your pain and suffering damages to ensure the insurance company doesn’t take advantage of you.