Your personal injury attorney is there to recoup the money you lost. Regardless of what the accident was, the root cause of which was not your fault, at least primarily. The question then shifts to determining how much money you lost. It is easier to arrive at a quantifiable number when it comes to medical expenses and wages. Even if you are self-employed, your personal injury attorney has methods for arriving at how much money you couldn’t earn due to the injury you sustained. 

In Texas, there are economic damages and non-economic damages. The examples of your medical bills and lost wages land into the category of economic damages. However, if you suffer a severe knee injury in a car accident, there will be physical pain from the injury and emotional elements to consider. In addition to feeling pain, maybe you missed out on running a 10k you’d been training for or simply could not ride your bike with your kids. These are examples of pain and suffering, which are difficult to quantify. 

Two Different Approaches

Before explaining how people factor pain and suffering into a settlement amount, you should know that you may never get to a court. Your attorney could negotiate a settlement amount before that ever happens. He will utilize his experience, examine the factors surrounding the injury, and arrive at an appropriate number. 

Short of that, there are ways to quantify pain and suffering:

  • Multiplier Method
  • Per Diem Method

The multiplier method involves taking the economic damages and multiplying them by a number between 1.5 and 5 (with five being the most severe). Your attorney may negotiate the multiplier with the other person’s legal counsel. Here’s an example:

  • The economic damages were $50,000
  • The attorneys (or a jury) conclude that the multiplier for pain and suffering is a 2
  • You receive $100,000 for pain and suffering ($50,000 x 2)
  • You receive $150,000 settlement (economic damages + non-economic damages)

The other way is the per diem method. The attorneys or a jury determine how much compensation the victim should receive each day that it takes them to recover. If we go back to the person with the knee injury, perhaps a doctor will testify that it will take three months to heal fully. If the per diem amount is determined to be $200 a day, that number would be multiplied by three months, approximately $12,000. 

Beaty Legal 

At Beaty Legal, we are not intimidated about taking your case to trial. Our priority is securing the settlement you are entitled to, and we won’t accept offers that are less than what you deserve. Let our experience with personal injury and litigation be the tools you need to get compensation. Contact us to schedule your consultation.

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