November 12, 2019
When you’re injured in a car accident, you face many challenges. You’ll be forced to deal with medical bills, missed time at work, vehicle repairs or replacement, and several other financial obstacles. But what about the intense physical and emotional pain and suffering you’re living with?
Can you sue for pain and suffering after a car accident?
Absolutely. You can and should factor in all the “non-economic” damages you encounter after a car accident. This includes pain and suffering, such as chronic physical discomfort, anxiety, depression, and loss of life’s enjoyment.
Determining how much you are owed for something as overwhelming and incalculable as physical and emotional suffering isn’t easy. However, an experienced car accident lawyer will be able to help you figure out how much you are owed.
Let’s take a closer look at pain and suffering from a car accident. As you’ll see, these types of damages are different than financial consequences of a crash, but they are equally difficult for an injured person to overcome, if not more so.
Understanding “Non-Economic” Damages
You can demand payment for two types of damages: economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages include costs such as medical bills, lost income, and property damage. The amount you seek for damages in crash-related personal injury claims will include the total sum of all past and future expenses you encounter because of the other driver’s negligence.
However, as anyone involved in a car accident understands, some of the greatest challenges people face after a crash are not things that can be calculated so easily. The physical pain and emotional suffering you experience can be devastating. Thus, these costs should also be factored into the damages you seek when filing a claim for compensation.
The legal term used for these types of costs is non-economic damages. The term itself fails to show just how significantly pain and suffering can impact an injured person. Pain and suffering make it difficult for someone to enjoy life. When they are seriously injured in a car accident, they can become depressed, anxious, stressed, and experience damaged relationships and a diminished capacity to perform routine tasks.
In other words, non-economic damages like pain and suffering also have financial repercussions. Fortunately, our legal system accounts for this by allowing an injured person to seek compensation for these types of damages. If you are filing a claim, it’s essential that your attorney factors pain and suffering into the amount you’re seeking.
How Much Do You Get for Pain and Suffering?
How much you get for pain and suffering after a car accident depends on how greatly the crash and injuries have affected your life. The greater your suffering, the more you should demand in non-economic damages.
Texas caps the amount of non-economic damages people can seek in certain types of injury claims, but, typically, there is no specific limit on the amount one can seek in personal injury claims related to car accidents. In some cases, a person might demand a few thousand dollars in compensation, while someone who has become permanently disabled might demand several hundred thousand dollars, if not more.
Determining how much you are owed for pain and suffering requires consulting an experienced attorney who knows how to properly calculate your damages. Through years of experience, your lawyer will know how much is typically awarded to injured people for their pain and suffering.
Pain and Suffering from a Car Accident
Car accidents are traumatic events. When someone is injured in an accident, they could develop post-traumatic stress disorder. They might become depressed and be unable to perform tasks that used to seem effortless. They might be incredibly stressed because of the uncertainty they face.
The physical pain one experiences after suffering an injury in a crash can also be severe. Pain could…
- Make performing a job impossible.
- Make depression more likely.
- Create a dependence on others for assistance.
- Create a need for medication.
- Lead to a loss of appetite.
- Make sleep extremely difficult.
Chronic pain has profound effects on people’s lives. In many ways, non-economic damages are more difficult to live with than economic damages. This is one of the many reasons that you should always factor in pain and suffering when preparing an injury claim.
Does pain and suffering include emotional distress?
Yes. Pain and suffering includes emotional distress, also called mental anguish. These are all different ways of saying the same thing. Emotional distress is a broad term that includes any of the mental consequences of a serious injury and traumatic event.
Some examples of emotional distress are PTSD, anxiety, depression, anger, thoughts of suicide, and any other forms of mental anguish one experiences after a car accident. These types of suffering are difficult enough to address on their own. However, after suffering injuries in a crash, they are typically combined with other difficulties that we’ve discussed, such as medical bills, job insecurity, physical pain, physical restrictions, and a diminished quality of life.
Work with an attorney that understands the true impact of pain and suffering.
After a car accident, you’ll find many personal injury attorneys willing to handle your case. Not every attorney has the same experience and dedication to discovering the effects of pain and suffering on their clients. Make sure you meet with an attorney to discuss your case before you hire them. Most personal injury attorneys offer free consultations, which you should take advantage of to find out more about how the lawyer will approach your case.
At Sandoval & Waldman, we take your pain seriously.
We hear the question often – can you sue for pain and suffering after a car accident? Not only can you sue for pain and suffering after an accident, you should absolutely demand compensation for all the ways in which a negligent driver has affected your life.
We believe that no claim is complete without seriously considering the ways in which pain and suffering has impacted your life. Our car accident lawyers believe that addressing your pain is perhaps the most important part of getting your life back to normal. We use all our available resources to help you accomplish that goal.
Contact Sandoval & Waldman today to schedule a free consultation. We want to hear more about your car accident so we can help you better understand your legal options.