When you are injured at the hands of or by the negligence of someone else, you deserve compensation for that injury. Traditionally, this involves the court awarding a certain amount of money for things like medical bills, lost wages, property damage or loss, and a diminished earning capacity as a result of that injury. However, there is more to the case than the actual financial losses you suffered. Often, the court will also award an amount for your pain and suffering as a result of your injury.
What Is Pain and Suffering?
Of course, most people are familiar with the concept of pain and suffering in the literal sense, but, like many terms, pain and suffering have a specific meaning under the law. Compensation for pain and suffering is a type of remedy in personal injury cases.
Pain refers to the actual pain that results from the physical damage of the injury. This includes the pain of the injury, the pain through the healing process, chronic pain resulting from the injury, and a limited mobility or functionality as a result of the injury. Future pain and complications are also considered.
Suffering generally refers to the emotional distress of dealing with the injury, and the way that has affected the injured person’s life, such as developing depression, insomnia, and having a generally diminished quality of life. Courts may also take into account the way the injury has affected loved ones, including the sacrifices they must make to care for the injured party and the ways it may impact the relationship the injured party has with them.
How Is Pain and Suffering Calculated in Georgia?
Unlike medical bills or lost wages, pain and suffering doesn’t have a clear number associated with it. As such, Georgia law has adapted and has established two ways of calculating the value of pain and suffering. These methods include the per diem method and the multiplication factor method. There is no limit on the amount that can be awarded for pain and suffering. Juries and judges can award as much in damages as they deem acceptable depending on the facts of the case.
The per diem method is most commonly used when the injured person is young. The calculation involves a set amount of money per day, added up for each day necessary to completely recover from the injury. For example, if the amount of money is set as $200 per day, and it takes 90 days to recover from the injury, pain and suffering damages would equate to $18,000.
The multiplication factor method involves a “multiplier” between 1 and 5 being selected depending on the severity of the injury. The recovered damages (other than pain and suffering) are then multiplied by this number. For example, if you recover $100,000 in medical bills and lost earnings, and your injury is deemed a 3, you would collect $300,000 in pain and suffering.
The team at Richard D. Hobbs & Associates has represented thousands of clients in personal injury cases of all varieties, including car accidents, tractor trailer accidents, slip and fall accidents, dog bites, wrongful death claims, product liability, and undocumented immigrant injuries. With experience practicing in Fayetteville, Peachtree City, Newnan, Jonesboro, McDonough, Hampton, and beyond, contact us for personalized representation in your Georgia personal injury case. Your pain and suffering matters. Let us make sure you receive the compensation you deserve.