If you’re hurt in an accident and have sustained serious injuries, there’s no doubt that you want to explore recovery of your lost wages and medical bills. But what if you’re dealt with injury impacts on your life extending beyond these damages?
California does allow for pain and suffering damages to be paid out to a claimant, but not in every case. In general, there are no caps on the pain and suffering damages you could be entitled to.
These are also referred to as non economic damages and can be used to compensate you for anxiety, shock, scarring, suffering, pain, emotional distress, grief, inconvenience, insomnia, humiliation, and loss of a limb.
There are also no fixed rules in California about how a jury determines pain and suffering damages. The jury must hear and see evidence from the injured party illustrating that he or she has felt ripple effects of the accident throughout his or her life. Juries will then evaluate the specifics of each case and determine the amount of pain and suffering damages that could be awarded.
In many cases, the possibility of pain and suffering awards encourages the defense to settle the case. This is because of the uncertainty about whether or not a jury will feel sympathy towards an injured victim and possibly award substantial damages. As an injured person, knowing this in the back of your mind can help you prepare for the possibility of settlement negotiations.