Compensation for Pain and Suffering may be Obtained Through a Personal Injury Lawsuit
In Missouri, when someone’s negligence or intentional acts caused you to be injured, they may be held accountable for their actions in a personal injury lawsuit and be ordered to compensate you for your pain and suffering. In most lawsuits, the issue isn’t whether or not there was pain and suffering, but how much there was and how much money it will take to fairly compensate the victim.
In personal injury lawsuits there are economic damages (payment for lost wages, bills paid, damaged property, expected future bills and lost wages) and non-economic damages, including pain and suffering.
- This is to cover the effects of your injuries, the medical treatment and your response to them.
- This includes physical pain, discomfort, anxiety, stress, depression, inability to enjoy the company of loved ones and other negative consequences.
- Physical and mental pain and suffering can be severe and life-changing, depending on the severity of the situation.
- These types of damages are meant to compensate you for past, present and future pain and suffering.
What Kinds of Accidents Could Lead to a Missouri Pain and Suffering Claim?
- Here are some possible scenarios:A vehicle accident causes multiple broken bones and a severe concussion. The victim would be in constant pain if not for medication. He suffers ongoing headaches and is unable to work for weeks, if not months. That lost income impacts his family and worries him because they don’t have much savings. The victim has become depressed, angry, has difficulty sleeping and a significant loss of appetite. In addition to the treatment of his physical injuries, he needs psychological treatment. If it can be shown that these problems are directly related to the accident, the accident victim would have a valid claim for compensation for mental pain and suffering due to the accident.
- A slip-and-fall victim suffers a back strain. She can’t be as active or exercise like she would like to and can’t run a marathon she was planning on entering. She’s missed a couple days from work due to the injury and treatment. She’s not as upbeat as she normally is, can be angry and frustrated with the situation. Though this case is less severe, this accident victim would also have a valid claim for pain and suffering, though for less than the vehicle accident victim.
When it comes to negotiating with an insurance company, your pain and suffering must be quantified and translated into an amount of money. Your economic damages are added up, multiplied by a number based on the severity of the accident, then your degree of fault is considered, lowering the amount by how much at fault you may be. That’s a general figure the parties use in negotiations.
How Might a Jury Consider a Missouri Pain and Suffering Claim?
At a trial, a judge may instruct a jury to use their common sense and experience in deciding what would be a fair and reasonable amount to compensate you for your pain and suffering. A jury might consider the following when trying to place a dollar value on them:
- How much has your daily routine been limited or changed?
- How much medication or treatment is needed to control your pain?
- Will the injury impact personal relationships?
- How much does the pain or injury affect sleep or other lifestyle issues?
- Will there be a long-term impact?
- Is the pain and suffering so severe that the plaintiff is unable to work? If so, for how long?
Other issues influencing the value of a pain and suffering award don’t have anything to do with your actual pain and suffering but rely on the quantity and quality of evidence available and your ability to communicate it. A favorable verdict is most likely, for example, under the following conditions:
- You’re an effective witness, able to communicate your situation while under the stress of a trial.
- The jury sees you as credible and likeable.
- Your physicians and medical records support your claims of pain and suffering.
- The jury considers your diagnosis, injuries and claims of pain and suffering logical and valid.
Bley & Evans Can Help You With a Missouri Pain and Suffering Claim
If you or a family member has been injured and are suffering physically, mentally and financially, you should discuss your options with us. We will sit down with you and talk about the facts of the accident. You will be treated with the utmost respect and given the opportunity to tell your story.
Reach out to us as soon as possible. There may be a statute of limitations or other deadline involved in filing your claim in Missouri. You will also be able to get the most out of our representation if we can get involved with the case early on. If you have questions or would like to discuss your case, contact us at Bley & Evans Trial Attorneys today by calling 844-443-8385. We look forward to working with you.