In any case relating to personal injury, from a slip and fall case to car accident, there are two main types of “Damages” (this is a legal term for the losses which the erring party must compensate you for) accessible to the person injured. The types of damages are non-economic (general) damages and economic( special) damages.
Examples of general pain include physical pain and discomfort, anxiety, stress, and emotional distress associated with your injuries and accident. Special damages are the easily calculable losses related to the victim’s injury or accident. This includes lost income as a result of time absent from work, medical bills, property damage, etc. The compensation is granted to the winning claimant in a personal injury case.
Quantifying Suffering And Pain
The task of pinning a particular amount on general damages is not an easy one for any personal injury attorney in West Palm Beach. But there are a number of methods an accident attorney may employ to calculate suffering and pain.
The two common methods are the multiplier and “per diem” (daily rate) methods.
- Multiply Your Economic damages
The most common method is to add up all the economic damages and multiply that by a number ranging from 1.5 on the low, and 4 or 5 on the high.
This other number (also called a “multiplier”) depends on some other factors in relation to the case. This factor includes the severity of the injuries, the victim’s prospect for a complete and fast recovery, etc.
In settlement negotiations, the major talking point is usually that the victim argues for a higher multiplier while the defendant’s attorney would like to use a lower multiplier.
- Use A Daily Rate
Another method used in calculating pain and suffering is the “per diem” ( per day) method. The idea is to request a particular dollar amount for each day the victim had to live with the pain caused by the accident.
A good way to ensure that the daily rate is reasonable is to use your daily earnings. Imagine if you suffered a slight neck strain and you are forced to put on a neck brace for three months (90 days). At your present job, you earn $45,000 per annum, that is $180 per day if you divide your wages by 250 working days yearly.
To calculate pain and suffering, simply multiply your $180 daily rate by 90 days of pain, and you arrive at $16,200.
This method is not applicable to long-term injuries. In those cases, you may need a Florida Boating & Cruise Line Accident Lawyer because your settlement will be based on related settlements and verdicts.
Combine Both Methods And Adjust To The Specifics Of The Accident
It is better to start with the two methods, then adjust your demand within the two ranges. It is not unusual to arrive at wildly different numbers- it all boils down to both parties negotiating skills. Just like the Florida Workers’ Compensation law provides, every case has its unique characteristics; the idea is to start at a reasonable number to justify your demand. Your attorney is expected to help you make the best possible choice.