When you're injured due to someone else's negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering. But how is that calculated in a personal injury settlement in Missouri? This article offers insight into the process.
What is Pain and Suffering?
"Pain and suffering" is a legal term referring to the physical and emotional distress caused by an injury. It can encompass everything from physical pain and discomfort to emotional anguish, stress, depression, and more. It's part of the non-economic damages in a personal injury case.
How Is Pain and Suffering Calculated?
In Missouri, there's no hard and fast rule or formula to calculate pain and suffering. However, the two most common methods employed are the "Multiplier Method" and the "Per Diem Method."
The Multiplier Method
In this method, the total of your economic damages (like medical bills and lost wages) is multiplied by a number, usually between 1.5 and 5, depending on the severity of your injuries, the impact on your life, and other factors.
The Per Diem Method
The Per Diem (Latin for "per day") method assigns a dollar value for each day you've experienced pain and suffering, from the date of the injury until you reach maximum medical improvement.
Factors Considered in the Calculation
Several factors can affect the calculation of pain and suffering, including:
1. The severity and type of the injury
2. The impact of the injury on your life
3. Your age
4. Whether your injury is permanent
5. The potential impact of the injury on your future health and quality of life
Role of Your Personal Injury Lawyer
A seasoned personal injury lawyer can help present a strong case for maximum compensation for your pain and suffering. They can help gather evidence, such as medical records, psychological assessments, and testimony from medical experts, to substantiate your claim.
Remember, Missouri operates under a "pure comparative negligence" rule, meaning your compensation can be reduced by your percentage of fault. Your lawyer can help argue against any allegations of shared fault to preserve the full value of your claim.
In conclusion, calculating pain and suffering in a personal injury settlement in Missouri involves careful consideration of many factors and often the expertise of a personal injury lawyer. Ensure you seek professional advice to navigate this complex process.