In a Florida personal injury lawsuit, pain and suffering refer to the physical and emotional distress experienced by a victim as a result of their injuries. This type of damage is often sought by the plaintiff in addition to economic damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages.
Pain and Suffering Examples
Pain and suffering is typically broken into two groups: (1) physical pain and suffering and (2) emotional or mental pain and suffering.
Physical Pain and Suffering in Florida Personal Injury Lawsuits
In a Florida lawsuit, physical pain and suffering refers to the physical discomfort, pain, and limitations that a victim experiences as a result of their injuries. Here are some examples of physical pain and suffering that may be sought in a Florida personal injury lawsuit:
A victim who has suffered broken bones may experience pain, swelling, and limited mobility in the affected area.
A victim who has suffered burns may experience severe pain, blistering, and scarring. The pain may continue even after the wound has healed.
Spinal Cord Injuries
A victim who has suffered a spinal cord injury may experience paralysis or limited mobility, pain, and difficulty performing daily activities.
Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)
A victim who has suffered a traumatic brain injury may experience headaches, dizziness, nausea, and other symptoms that can affect their quality of life.
A victim who has suffered whiplash in a car accident may experience pain and stiffness in their neck and shoulders, which can limit their ability to move and perform daily activities.
Soft Tissue Injuries
A victim who has suffered soft tissue injuries such as bruises, sprains, or strains may experience pain and swelling in the affected area, which can limit their mobility.
A victim who has suffered an amputation may experience phantom pain, which is a sensation of pain in the missing limb.
These are just a few examples of physical pain and suffering that may be sought in a Florida lawsuit. The total amount of damages that can be awarded for physical pain and suffering will depend on the specific circumstances of each case, including the severity of the injuries and the impact they have had on the victim's life.
Mental or Emotional Pain and Suffering in Florida Personal Injury Lawsuits
In a Florida lawsuit, mental or emotional pain and suffering refers to the psychological impact that an injury or accident has on a victim. Here are some examples of mental or emotional pain and suffering that may be sought in a Florida personal injury lawsuit:
Anxiety & Depression
A victim may experience anxiety or depression as a result of their injuries, which can affect their ability to perform daily activities and lead a normal life.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
A victim may develop PTSD after experiencing a traumatic event, such as a car accident or a violent crime. Symptoms of PTSD can include nightmares, flashbacks, and anxiety.
Loss of Enjoyment of Life
A victim may be unable to participate in hobbies, sports, or other activities they enjoyed before the accident, causing emotional distress and a sense of loss.
Embarrassment or Humiliation
A victim may experience emotional distress and embarrassment as a result of scarring or disfigurement caused by their injuries.
Fear or Phobia
A victim may develop a fear of driving or other activities related to the accident or injury, causing emotional distress and a reduced quality of life.
A victim may experience insomnia or other sleep disturbances as a result of their injuries or emotional distress caused by the accident.
A victim may experience emotional pain and suffering as a result of strains on their relationships with loved ones, caused by the accident or their injuries.
These are just some examples of the types of mental or emotional pain and suffering damages that are commonly sought in Florida personal injury lawsuits. The exact amount of damages that may be awarded for mental or emotional pain and suffering will depend on the specific circumstances of each case, including the severity of the emotional distress and the impact it has had on the victim's life. The more severe the emotional damage, the higher the potential award for pain and suffering.
Pain and Suffering Calculator: How to Calculate Pain and Suffering in Florida
In Florida, there is no set formula for calculating pain and suffering damages, as it is a highly subjective measure. Instead, the damages awarded will depend on the specific circumstances of the case, including the severity of the injuries, the length of the recovery period, and the impact of the injuries on the victim's daily life.
Here are some factors that may be considered when calculating pain and suffering damages in a Florida personal injury case:
Severity of the Injuries
The more severe the injuries, the higher the damages may be. For example, a victim who suffered permanent disability or disfigurement may receive more in pain and suffering damages than a victim who suffered a temporary injury.
Length of the Recovery Period
A longer recovery period may result in higher pain and suffering damages, as the victim may have endured a longer period of pain and emotional distress.
Impact on Daily Life
The extent to which the injuries have impacted the victim's daily life, such as their ability to work, care for themselves, or participate in hobbies or other activities, may be taken into account.
Age and Health Prior to the Injury
The age and health of the victim before the injury may be considered, as a younger person may have more years of life affected by the injuries, and a person with pre-existing health conditions may be more vulnerable to the impact of the injuries.
The level of emotional distress experienced by the victim, such as anxiety, depression, or PTSD, may be taken into account.
Testimony from Experts
Expert testimony from medical professionals or mental health professionals may be used to help establish the extent of the pain and suffering.
The damages awarded in similar cases in the past may be used as a reference point when calculating pain and suffering damages.
It is important to note that in Florida, there are limits on the amount of pain and suffering damages that can be awarded in certain types of cases, such as medical malpractice cases. An experienced personal injury attorney can provide guidance on how to calculate pain and suffering damages in your specific case and help you seek the compensation you deserve.
How to Prove Pain and Suffering in Florida
In a Florida personal injury lawsuit, proving pain and suffering requires establishing the impact of the injuries on the victim's physical and emotional well-being. Here are some ways to prove pain and suffering in a Florida lawsuit:
Medical records can help document the extent of the injuries and the treatment received, which can help establish the physical pain and suffering endured by the victim.
Expert testimony from medical professionals or mental health professionals can help establish the extent of the pain and suffering experienced by the victim.
Testimony from the Victim
The victim's own testimony can provide insight into the impact of the injuries on their daily life and emotional well-being.
Testimony from Friends & Family
Testimony from the victim's friends and family members can provide additional perspective on the impact of the injuries on the victim's life and well-being.
Psychological evaluations can help establish the extent of emotional distress experienced by the victim, such as anxiety, depression, or PTSD.
Records of Missed Work or Lost Wages
The impact of the injuries on the victim's ability to work or earn a living can also be used to establish the extent of pain and suffering.
Evidence of Changes in Daily Life
Evidence of changes in the victim's daily life, such as being unable to participate in hobbies or activities they previously enjoyed, can be used to establish the impact of the injuries on the victim's quality of life.
It is important to work with an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you gather the necessary evidence to establish pain and suffering damages in your case. An attorney can also help ensure that the evidence is presented effectively in court to help maximize the damages awarded.
Pain & Suffering vs. Medical Bills
Pain and suffering is separate from medical bills in a personal injury case. Medical bills are considered economic damages and refer to the actual medical expenses incurred as a result of the injury, such as hospital bills, surgery costs, and the costs of any ongoing medical treatment.
Pain and suffering, on the other hand, is a form of non-economic damages and refers to the physical and emotional distress experienced by the victim as a result of their injuries. This can include pain, discomfort, anxiety, depression, and other symptoms that affect the victim's quality of life.
In a personal injury case, the victim can seek compensation for both economic and non-economic damages, including medical bills and pain and suffering. Economic damages are generally easier to calculate, as they are based on actual expenses incurred. Non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, on the other hand, are more subjective and can be more difficult to quantify.
Contact an Experienced Florida Injury Lawyer for Your FREE Legal Consultation
If you have been injured as a result of the negligence or carelessness of another party, you should speak with an experienced Florida personal injury lawyer as soon as possible because you may be entitled to compensation. You can contact us online or you can call our Orlando, Florida law office at (321) 352-7588 to schedule your consultation.
If you need a South Carolina personal injury lawyer, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at (843) 638-6590. We have at least one lawyer licensed in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina.