In the weeks and months after a serious car accident, you will receive bills for medical care and the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle. If your recovery takes a long time, you might not be able to earn a paycheck for a long time. In Kentucky personal injury law, these are examples of economic damages — harms resulting from your injuries that can be easily tabulated. All you have to do to prove the cost of your past medical care is show an invoice from the hospital.
But an auto accident can affect your life in ways that do not show up on a bill but are no less real or devastating. The pain and debilitation of a serious injury are examples of this type of compensable damage, known as non-economic damages. Proving the extent of a plaintiff’s non-economic damages can be complicated. Still, with the right legal help, it is possible for them to be fairly compensated for their pain and suffering.
Using the ‘multiplier method’ after a serious collision in Lexington
The insurance industry typically uses the pain and suffering multiplier method. This works by assigning a number to the victim’s pain. Depending on the severity of the injury, this can range from 1.5 to five. The insurance adjuster then multiplies that number by the victim’s total amount of economic damages. For example, if a person files an insurance claim after a car crash that left them in terrible pain and significantly disabled, the multiplier used in their case might be 4.5 or five.
The multiplier method is often used in personal injury lawsuits as well, but it is controversial. Critics say that the choice of multiplier is arbitrary. One attorney might say that a car accident victim suffered a three level of pain and suffering, while another might as easily argue that the victim’s suffering reaches level four. Thus, two plaintiffs with similar amounts of pain and suffering could receive different dollar figures in compensation. Observers also note that this method does not take individuals’ particular emotional sensitivities into account.
Applying the pain and suffering multiplier to your claim
As you can see, determining how much a car accident victim deserves in compensation is largely based on the plaintiff’s individual experience. To find out how much you might be entitled to in pain and suffering compensation, consult a personal injury attorney in your area.