For retirees and stay-at-home parents who have no documented earning power or outside employment expectations, calculating pain and suffering in a personal injury claim poses a challenge.
The traditional method used to calculate pain and suffering settlements is by applying a multiple to the actual costs or special damages incurred by the injured party. These must be supported by documentation and can include:
However, the hidden costs in pain and suffering for those without documented earning power are general damages. For example, a stay-at-home parent who submits a personal injury claim for pain and suffering cannot claim lost wages even though the working parent must reduce work hours to care for children when the stay-at-home parent is unable to do so. It might also be difficult to claim added childcare expenses, because they were not incurred as a result of personal injury to the working parent. Yet, there is obviously pain and suffering when anyone is injured as the result of the negligent or willful acts of another. So, how do attorneys and the insurance adjuster calculate the amount of compensation due to the victims of these acts?
Calculating the actual costs may be straightforward; coming up with an actual cost that fairly represents the pain and suffering for a stay-at-home parent, is not. This is the process:
However, claims for permanent injuries and disabilities are not so common and often wind up in court. That is why it is important to have an experienced personal injury attorney prepare the demand letter when compensation is sought for permanent or long-term injuries. Atlanta attorneys Bruce A. Hagen and his associates have over 30 years of experience helping victims of injuries receive adequate compensation. Contact the Law Firm of Bruce A. Hagen if you need help making a personal injury claim.