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How is Pain and Suffering Calculated in New York?

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If you have been injured in an accident caused by the negligence or wrongdoing of another, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries through a personal injury claim. Damages in a personal injury claim are intended, in large part, to put the injury victim in a situation that he or she would have been in had the accident never happened. This means that damages are mostly intended to compensate you for your losses. Damages in personal injury cases will include things like medical expenses and the cost of future medical care. You may also be entitled to lost wages and loss of earning capacity. Another significant portion of damages in a personal injury case is likely to include pain and suffering.

How is Pain and Suffering Calculated in New York?

There are economic and non-economic damages available in personal injury cases. The economic damages are those that are fairly easy to quantify as they can be founded in firm numbers found in records and bills. Economic damages, for instance, will include things like medical expenses totaled using your medical bills. Lost wages will also be included in economic damages and based on things like your pay stubs or W2s.

Non-economic damages, on the other hand, are more subjective. While just as real and significant as economic damages, non-economic damages cannot simply be established by totaling bills and other charges. These are the losses that cannot easily be quantified. They are allusive and personal. Pain and suffering damages are a significant part of non-economic damages. How do you put a price on the pain, both physical and emotional, that someone has experienced due to sustaining injuries in an accident? It is difficult, to say the least.

Courts, however, have found various methods in order to have some foundation to how pain and suffering damages can and should be calculated. The methods employed will vary by jurisdiction. There are a few different ones that are commonly used in New York. The Multiplier Method is one of them. In the Multiplier Method, the economic damages are first totaled up. Again, this will include the total of things like your medical bills and lost wages. The total of your economic damages will then be multiplied by a number chosen usually between 1.5 and 5. The multiplier is selected based on the severity of your injuries. The more severe your injuries, the higher the multiplier will be.

Another commonly employed method of calculating pain and suffering damages in New York is the Per Diem method. This method, in contrast with the Multiplier Method, does not use economic damages in its calculations. Instead, the Per Diem method uses a dollar amount multiplied by the number of days that the person remains injured. The daily amount of compensation is often based on a person’s wages.

Regardless of whether the Per Diem Method or the Multiplier Method is being employed, there are a number of factors that will be relevant to the analysis and play a significant role in the amount of pain and suffering damages awarded. For instance, the impact on your daily life and on your relationships will be used as a determining factor as well the length and nature of your recovery period. What bodily functions you have lost and any hobbies or activities you can no longer participate in due to your injuries will be considered as well. Any resulting conditions such as depression or anxiety caused by the accident and your resulting injuries will also be factors.

Westchester Personal Injury Attorney

While there may be different ways of calculating pain and suffering damages, it is always going to be important to have solid evidence to present your case in the strongest possible way. Attorney Michael LoGiudice will fight for you to be fully and fairly compensated for both your economic and non-economic accident losses. Contact us today.

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