The Evaluation of Pain and Suffering Claims

Categories: Personal Injury


Compassionate Injury Attorneys Serving Victims in Washington with Pain and Suffering Claims

You have most likely heard of “pain and suffering” before. But, you may not know exactly what this type of claim entails. From a legal perspective, pain and suffering is not a free-for-all-request. Instead, it assesses the true value of a person’s emotional, mental, and physical pain due to an accident caused by someone’s negligence or malicious acts. But, how do you calculate something that is not readily seen? In order to answer that, you must fully understand what a pain and suffering claim really entails.

What is Pain and Suffering

There are two types of pain and suffering claims: Physical pain and suffering, and the mental anguish of an injury.

  1. Physical pain and suffering. This is the physical pain that a plaintiff suffers from. This not only includes the pain and discomfort that the claimant has endured at the time of the claim, but also the amount of physical pain and suffering that he or she will endure while recovering from the injuries. This can include pain associated with any treatments, or future surgeries required due to the injury.
  2. Mental pain and anguish. This is a direct result of the claimant’s injury, but it is a by-product of the injuries itself and not the act that led to the injury. Mental anguish can include things like emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, fear, anger, humiliation, and even anxiety. If the person suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), he or she could also claim mental pain and suffering for the personal injury claim.

In severe cases, a person can also claim for anger, depression, loss of appetite, lack of energy, sexual issues, mood swings, and even sleep disturbances – if these are related to the injury or the accident itself.

How is Pain and Suffering Calculated?

Judges do not give guidelines for how a jury can determine pain and suffering calculations – and often, this leads to inconsistent jury awards for the claim. There are no charts for juries to look at in order to figure out how much a person should receive for pain and suffering – whether mental or physical. Instead, they must use their background, the evidence, and their sense of judgement to determine what they feel is fair in order to fully compensate the plaintiff for his or her suffering.

Sometimes, multipliers are used by insurance companies to compensate for pain and suffering. This can include using a multiplier of 1.5 to 4 times the compensatory damage amounts to come up with an amount to compensate for pain and suffering. Even in small cases, multipliers can be dangerous. Not all insurance companies use them anymore – and some simply input damages into a computer to help determine an automatic pain and suffering payout – which is often much less than a plaintiff deserves.

Were You Injured? Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer

The only way to adequately determine how much pain and suffering compensation you deserve is to contact a personal injury attorney. The team at Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner, PLLC can help you with your claim. We have been practicing law for decades, and are here to help guide you through the process to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. Schedule a free consultation now at 800-925-1875, or fill out our online contact form.

Author Photo

Matt Conner

Matt Conner, a distinguished attorney at Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner, brings a unique blend of financial and legal expertise to his practice. Graduating with a double major in mathematics and economics from Willamette University, he initially honed his analytical skills as an economist for the State of Oregon. Specializing in personal injury law, Matt is adept at handling a wide array of cases, including multiparty litigation against large entities, and claims involving gun violence, sexual and police misconduct, car accidents, traumatic brain injuries, and wrongful death. Admitted to the Washington State Bar in 2014, he is known for his tenacious advocacy and deep compassion for clients facing life-altering challenges. His approach is not just about legal representation; it’s about restoring lives.