How are pain and suffering damages calculated in Tennessee?
If you were hurt in a car accident caused by another person or company’s carelessness, you can file a personal injury lawsuit to pursue compensation for both economic and non-economic losses. Whereas economic damages compensate crash victims for monetary losses like accident-related medical expenses, lost wages and benefits, loss of earning capacity, and out-of-pocket costs, non-economic or pain and suffering damages attempt to compensate victims for losses that are more difficult to quantify. Here’s what you need to know about pain and suffering damages in Tennessee car accident cases, including how the knowledgeable and insightful attorneys at Weir & Kestner Injury Lawyers can help you fight for the compensation you deserve.
Understanding Pain and Suffering Damages
Defining pain and suffering can be challenging, but according to the Tennessee Court of Appeals, “Pain and suffering encompasses the physical and mental discomfort caused by an injury. It includes the wide array of mental and emotional responses that accompany pain, such as anguish, distress, fear, humiliation, grief, shame, and worry.” Additionally, pain and suffering damages can include compensation for accident-related pain you’ve already experienced, are currently experiencing, and will likely experience in the future.
Examples of Pain and Suffering Damages in a Tennessee Car Accident Case
- Physical pain or suffering
- Emotional pain or distress
- Mental anguish
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Loss of society, companionship, or consortium
- Reduced quality of life
- Loss of enjoyment of normal activities
Calculating Pain and Suffering Damages in Tennessee Car Crash Cases
While the process for determining economic damages is relatively straightforward, it’s harder to put a price on intangible losses like pain and suffering. After a Tennessee car crash, insurance companies and defense attorneys often use a formula to estimate the overall value of the claim. Pain and suffering damages are assigned a number one through five, depending on the severity of the injuries, as well as other factors. Here’s an example:
Economic damages x 1-5 (pain and suffering multiplier) + lost income = estimated damages
Factors That Can Affect the Pain and Suffering Multiplier Used in Your Claim
- Type of injuries
- Severity of injuries
- Treatment required for recovery
- Length of recovery
- Permanency of injuries
- Availability and strength of evidence
- Skill of your personal injury attorney
Limitations on What You Can Recover
While there’s no limit on what you can recover in economic damages after a Tennessee car accident, the state caps pain and suffering damages at a maximum of $750,000 in most cases. However, in cases involving severe or permanent injuries such as spinal cord injuries, amputations, disfiguring burns, or the wrongful death of a parent of a minor child, the cap on non-economic damages increases to $1 million. The Tennessee Supreme Court reaffirmed these caps in 2020, making $750,000 (or $1 million) the most you can recover, regardless of what a jury awards.
How Our Smyrna, Nashville, and Murfreesboro Car Accident Attorneys Can Help
Pain and suffering damages are an essential component of a personal injury claim. Unfortunately, because these losses are intangible and subjective, getting fair compensation for what you’ve been through can be challenging. At Weir & Kestner Injury Lawyers, our adept legal team persuasively conveys these non-economic losses to insurance companies and juries and fights for the use of the highest possible multiplier in estimating the value of your case. We care about you and your recovery, and we’re committed to helping clients collect full compensation for both their economic and non-economic damages. Ready to find out what we can do for you and your car crash case?
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