Updated February 20, 2020

What Is Pain and Suffering in Personal Injury Cases?

Pain and suffering is a way to recover money to compensate for the impact an accident or injury had on a victim. Some payments, referred to as damages, are designed to punish offenders who were negligent. This money is often intended to get the life of a plaintiff back on track.

These damages are split up between special damages (monetary figures that can be objectively calculated) and general damages (subjective figures determined by a judge or jury based on evidence, testimonies, and interpretations).

What are General Damages?

Pain and suffering are considered general damages and include any physical or mental pain suffered after an accident or injury. These damages can include the following:

  • Physical pain and discomfort
  • Complications that affect a victim’s quality of life
  • Disability
  • A shortened life expectancy
  • Present and future physical limitations
  • Mental disturbances such as depression, anxiety, and changes in sleeping or eating patterns

However, there are some factors that judges and juries will commonly consider when evaluating pain and suffering:

  • Types of injuries that were suffered
  • How long the pain lasted
  • Severity of the pain
  • Effect of the pain or injury on someone’s enjoyment of life
  • Effect of the incident on the plaintiff’s ability to partake in favorite activities
  • Anticipated future problems
  • Age of the victim at the time of the injury
  • Evidence that your attorney is able to supply

What are Special Damages?

Anything that falls under special damages is not considered pain and suffering. Special damages are monetary figures that can be added up to an objective, definite dollar amount. These may include the following:

  • Lost wages
  • Property damage
  • Medical expenses
  • Bills not connected to pain and suffering

Contact a Personal Injury Attorney Today

If you or a loved one have been injured as a result of negligence, you are urged to contact the Indianapolis Personal Injury Attorneys of Wilson Kehoe Winingham. The lawyers at WKW can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call 317.920.6400 or fill out an online contact form for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

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