Proving Pain and Suffering Following an Accident
If you’ve been in a car accident, the easiest damages to prove will be the damages for which you can produce physical bills. If you needed to replace a car door, your body shop will provide you with a bill and you can seek compensation for these losses. If you have medical bills, you can produce the bills the hospital or doctors provided to you and use these to seek compensation.
Merely claiming pain and suffering following an accident is not sufficient evidence. You’ll need proper medical records to prove that you suffered as a result of your injuries. Relevant tests, CT Scans, X-Rays, or MRI’s will all be useful in helping you to build a strong case. Unfortunately, not all injuries will show up on medical scans. Mild traumatic brain injury, PTSD, or whiplash don’t always appear on traditional tests. In this case, getting a doctor to diagnose and confirm the extent of your injuries is important.
PTSD for instance, will be diagnosed by a therapist or clinician. In order to be diagnosed with PTSD, you need to have witnessed or have experienced a traumatic event. Following this event, individuals sometimes experience nightmares, intrusive thoughts, and flashbacks. Individuals may avoid thoughts or situations that remind them of the trauma. For instance, if you avoid driving on the highway following your car accident, you may be suffering from PTSD and may be able to recover damages for pain and suffering. PTSD can lead to difficulty concentrating, increased anger, difficulty sleeping, and hyper-vigilance. All of these symptoms can make it difficult for individuals to engage in normal life activities. Seeking the diagnosis of an experienced and skilled clinician can make it more likely for you to be able to recover damages following an accident.
Another way to prove pain and suffering is to offer visual evidence. Photos of injuries or scars can help you build a strong case. Keeping a pain journal can also help you document the changes to your quality of life that your injuries have caused you.
An article published by Duke University acknowledged that it is difficult for juries to determine the value of a pain and suffering claim, or to determine what pain and suffering is “worth.” Lawyers will use mathematical formulas based on the kind of injuries you sustained, the possibility of your missing time on the job, and taking into account factors such as how long the pain and suffering is likely to be present in the future. Of course, there is no “norm” in making these determinations because every case will be unique. For instance, an older individual who receives a scar from a car accident might receive one monetary award, while a younger individual with a career in film might receive a much greater monetary award for the same scar.
If you’ve suffered a personal injury in Meridian or Boise, Idaho, you may be struggling with daily pain and suffering. It can be difficult to determine how much money to seek in a personal injury claim. If you’ve been injured, contacting the Law Offices of Johnson & Lundgreen is the first step you can take to recover a fair amount in damages.