How Much Pain and Suffering Can I Recover in a Georgia Car Accident Claim?
If you have been injured in a car accident, you may be eligible for both economic and non-economic damages.
While economic damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages, are relatively straightforward to calculate, it is often more difficult to quantify non-economic damages like pain and suffering.
Here at the Mike Hostilo Law Firm, our Georgia car accident lawyers can help maximize the compensation you receive. Read on to learn more, then contact us to schedule your free consultation.
What is Pain and Suffering?
While they have likely heard the term before, many accident victims do not understand the pivotal role that “pain and suffering” plays in their personal injury claim. There are two types: physical and mental. Physical pain and suffering refers to the pain related to the victim’s physical injuries – both current and future.
Mental pain and suffering, however, refers to the impact of the injury on a victim’s mental state. This includes essentially any negative emotion, but specifically things like anxiety, loss of enjoyment of life, trouble sleeping, emotional distress and more.
How Much Pain and Suffering Should I Ask for in My Georgia Car Accident Claim?
Because no two car accident claims are the same, the Mike Hostilo Law Firm takes a personalized approach to each case. Once we have learned more about your situation, our Georgia car accident lawyers will be able to determine how much your claim is worth – including compensation for pain and suffering.
We may use one of these methods:
Damages (such as medical bills, lost wages, etc.) are totaled and then multiplied by a number that corresponds to the severity of your injury.
Per Diem Method
This method assigns a specific dollar amount to each day (from the date of the accident to the day the victim reaches maximum medical recovery).
An insurance company may use other methods to calculate pain and suffering, but if they refuse to offer a fair settlement, we will file a car accident lawsuit and take your case to court.
Because there are no specific guidelines to help juries determine a reasonable settlement for pain and suffering, they often must rely on their good sense. Your Georgia car accident lawyer will fight hard to ensure you never settle for less than you deserve.
How to Prove Pain and Suffering
To prove either physical or emotional pain and suffering, it is critical to have solid evidence to back up your car accident claim. The more documentation you can provide to your accident attorney, the better! Key evidence includes the following:
- Doctor’s notes
- Medical records
- Accident scene photographs
- Personal journals documenting the victim’s pain/mental anguish
- Therapist or mental health counselor’s notes
In Georgia, Does Fault Matter in a Pain and Suffering Claim?
Since Georgia is a modified comparative negligence state, injured parties are eligible to receive compensation even if they are partially to blame for the accident. They must have been less than 50% responsible, however, in order to recover damages. Keep in mind that the damages you receive will be reduced by the percentage of fault. For instance, if your damages totaled $100,000, but you were 25% at fault, you would only be eligible to receive $75,000.
How Does Georgia Handle Pain and Suffering In A Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
In Georgia, damages for wrongful death lawsuits are calculated similarly to pain and suffering claims. Plus, there is no cap to the amount of economic and non-economic damages that surviving family members can recover.
Economic damages in wrongful death lawsuits pertain to the estimated future earnings of the deceased. Non-economic damages are less tangible and harder to calculate, but are designed to financially compensate for the loss of a loved one. They are calculated using many of the same factors as personal injury claims.
To find out what your wrongful death claim is worth, schedule your free consultation today. Our team is here to help.
Common Examples of Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering may include the following:
Chronic anger may stem from PTSD or traumatic brain injury, and negatively impacts not only the accident victims but those around them.
This includes any worry, fear, or uneasiness not present before the car crash – including insomnia, PTSD, or a new fear of driving.
More than just a fleeting feeling of sadness, depression is an overwhelming sense that nothing in life matters.
Lifelong physical reminders of the accident, like scars or lost limbs, must be compensated for.
Embarrassment, Humiliation, or Indignity
All forms of mental anguish, these emotions may plague accident victims, especially if they share liability for their injuries.
The loss of a loved one can cause incredible pain, but even if the person is still alive, you may experience grief if they are not the same person they were before the accident.
If physical and emotional pain prevent you from performing everyday activities, damages may be awarded to compensate for inconvenience.
Loss of Companionship
This may apply to any situation where someone must grieve the loss of the companionship, affection, security, or general care of the accident victim.
Loss of Enjoyment of Life
Whether caused by a mental or physical condition, loss of enjoyment of life applies when victims can no longer do the things they once loved.
Loss of Quality of Life
If an accident victim’s days are now spent at the doctor or dealing with medication side effects, their overall quality of life decreases.
This refers to the inability to perform daily tasks, move around, or function on your own – and is one of the most common reasons to file a personal injury lawsuit.
Physical pain has a major impact, one that often continues after the victim reaches maximum medical improvement.
While it may be uncomfortable to discuss with a lawyer, the loss of sexual function can affect relationships and decrease quality of life.
More Questions? Discover A Georgia Car Accident Lawyer Near Me
Want to learn more about car accidents claims or pain and suffering? Contact our experienced Georgia car accident lawyers today! As always, Attorney Mike Hostilo and our skilled legal team are here to help.
You can find us serving accident injury victims in the following areas:
(Park of Commerce) Savannah, GA
SOUTH CAROLINA LAWYERS
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