“Pain and Suffering” is a legal term used to describe the discomfort and distress caused by a personal injury. The term encompasses both physical and mental trauma and Kentucky accident victims can expect to earn compensation for these types of non-economic hardships.
An accident in Kentucky can involve a car crash on a state highway, a slip-and-fall at a local business or at work, or an injury inflicted by a defective product you use in your home. There are many other unfortunate ways you and your family members can be hurt, but the process of getting help afterward will likely be similar.
You’ll want to focus on healing, but you’ll also have to worry over the enormous costs of your recovery. The financial losses like hospital bills and missed time at work will be easy to show. But what about the physical and emotional anguish you and your family are subjected to. How can you receive compensation for those hardships that might be harder to show a receipt for?
Pain and Suffering Damages in Kentucky
Pain and suffering can include physical pain and mental anguish and involve discomfort, inconvenience, and humiliation caused by an injury.
With physical pain, consideration has to be given to the overall discomfort of the victim. In a personal injury case, a victim needs to factor in the potential for further pain in the future.
Mental pain and suffering is basically any kind of negative emotion that an accident victim experiences. This change in outlook can affect victims as well as the family members who must care for them. Family relationships may be altered by the overwhelming changes a serious injury brings.
Non-Economic Damages Vs. Economic Damages
Economic damages refer to the hardships you face that are financial in nature. Hospital bills, lost wages, travel costs, and other documented expenses are included in your claim for damages.
Pain and suffering is categorized as non-economic damages or general damages. The damages entail physical and emotional suffering and also include the changes in lifestyle victims and their families may have to cope with after an injury.
Non-economic damages can include any or all of these factors:
- Physical trauma and pain. This can involve pain therapy and treatment over months, years, or a lifetime.
- Emotional anguish. This includes anxiety, depression, PTSD, and many other mental illnesses resulting from the trauma experienced in the crash and during a difficult recovery.
- Humiliation. Permanent scarring or disfigurement can affect a person’s self-image and make them wary of going out in public.
- Insomnia. The loss of the enjoyment of something as basic as a good night’s sleep.
- Grief. The loss a victim or family members feel after losing a loved one in an accident.
- Loss of quality of life from a serious injury. The loss of a limb or a permanent disability can make life much more difficult for patients and leave them to complete difficult journeys each day.
- Loss of enjoyment of activities. Accident victims may no longer be able to enjoy jogging, biking, traveling, and other hobbies.
- Loss of consortium. A severe injury could affect the intimacy and sexual relationship victims once shared with their spouses. Other close family relationships may be damaged.
What Is My Pain and Suffering Worth After an Accident in Kentucky
The good news is that Kentucky law does not cap the awards available for pain and suffering after a personal injury. This is also the case for medical malpractice lawsuits. A settlement might award you and your family hundreds of thousands of dollars for everything you’ve been through. A jury could award you millions of dollars for pain and suffering.
Unfortunately, it’s hard to put a price tag on the pain and emotional misery someone goes through. Having a skilled personal injury attorney presenting your case and conveying the level of discomfort you’ve had to endure can certainly help to earn you more in compensation.
If you are an effective witness on the stand and can effectively communicate the level of pain and distress you’ve experienced to the jury, your case can be much more successful.
Generally speaking, a few factors can drive up the amounts awarded in cases asking for pain and suffering damages:
- The more someone’s way of life is changed by an accident, the more money pain and suffering damages are worth.
- The difficulty of the victim’s recovery from injury. How much time was spent in a hospital bed and how much work in a physical therapy room was required from the victim?
- The length of recovery. Some insurance settlements must be negotiated before an injury is fully healed. In some cases, a full recovery may be impossible. Lifelong injuries will continue to affect the victim’s outlook on life and should earn more in compensation to make sure the victim never has to struggle financially while trying to retain as much freedom and control over his or her daily life as possible.
Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer Serving Kentucky
If you or a loved one has suffered a serious injury please contact Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, for a free case consultation that comes at no obligation to you or your family.
Your injury may have placed you in great pain, but that might not be the only manner in which you are suffering. Emotional anguish after an accident and an injury is normal and can be just as debilitating as a physical wound. Don’t trust insurance companies to understand what you’ve been through and provide fair support. Allow a Kentucky Personal Injury Lawyer to take up your fight to make sure you and your family have what you need to rebuild your lives.