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2 ways to calculate pain and suffering 

On Behalf of | Sep 15, 2023 | Personal Injury

When someone else injures you, such as when they cause a motor vehicle accident, you may have to endure significant pain and suffering that wouldn’t have happened otherwise. Even if you recover, you still went through this traumatic experience because of someone else.

That’s why people sometimes seek compensation for pain and suffering, along with things like medical bills and lost wages. But it is often much easier to calculate how many paychecks were lost or how much had to be paid to the hospital. How do you determine what pain and suffering is really worth?

A daily payment

One approach that has been used is known as the per diem or “daily rate” approach. It typically just determines what pain and suffering would cost a person for a single day. This total is then multiplied by how many days that pain and suffering lasted. Often, the pay rate will be set the same as what the person would’ve earned in wages that day. 

But this isn’t necessarily to compensate them for their wages, which may be a separate form of compensation. It’s just a way to calculate what a day is worth to them, considering that they lost the ability to enjoy that day.

A pain multiplier

Another tactic is to determine a pain multiplier. This is a number, typically running from 1.5 to 5. The more serious the injuries are, the higher the multiplier is. This multiplier can then be applied to specific economic damages. For instance, once you determine your lost wages and medical expenses, they could be multiplied by two to pay you for the pain and suffering that you went through.

Properly valuing a personal injury claim can be a complex process, and it is sometimes contentious. It’s important for those involved to understand exactly what legal steps to take to protect their interests and get what they’re really due.