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Is Compensation Available for Pain and Suffering After an Accident?

Dan Brian   |  June 6, 2018   |  

When a person is involved in a car wreck or other type of accident that causes injuries, the devastation can be more than financial. In addition to medical expenses, property damage, and even lost wages, an individual may experience pain and suffering.

Pain and suffering can be somewhat harder to quantify than economic losses but they are just as important to injury cases.

If you’ve been injured in any type of accident caused by the negligence of another party, compensation for your pain and suffering could be available. Contact our personal injury attorneys today for a free, no obligation case evaluation.

When is Compensation Available for Pain and Suffering?

North Carolina law gives victims of accidents the right to recover both economically and “non-economically”. These types of injuries/losses can include physical pain, mental suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, disfigurement, physical impairment, inconvenience, grief, anxiety, humiliation, emotional distress, and any other type of loss that you may suffer as a result of the wrongdoer’s harmful conduct.

In fact, North Carolina has specific instructions that a judge gives a jury to help them determine how to award for pain and suffering. North Carolina Pattern Instruction Civil 810.02 states that actual damages include “fair compensation to be awarded” for pain and suffering, along with medical expenses, loss of earnings, and permanent injury.

Our attorneys have also handled cases that involved more serious physical injuries that can cause a large amount of pain and suffering for the victim(s). These can include but aren’t limited to: bone fractures, brain and spinal cord injuries, back and neck injuries, and internal organ injuries.

Pain and suffering damages can be available where there is known physical harm or even where there is no obvious physical harm at all. For example, our attorneys handle cases involving sexual harassment which generally cause significant emotional suffering even though they may not have suffered any physical injuries.

How Much Can I Recover for Pain and Suffering?

It’s important to remember that the term “pain and suffering” is used to describe the different non-economic damages that an accident may cause. This can include emotional distress, loss of companionship, humiliation, and mental suffering.

While these damages are elusive, they are just as important to an injury case as any other type damages that a client may suffer. In fact, pain and suffering often take a huge toll on an injured victim’s life. Many individuals face difficulties with day-to-day activities such as walking, working, driving or even enjoying time with family and other loved ones.

North Carolina Pattern Instruction Civil 810.08 provides that there is no set method for determining the dollar amount to award for these types of injuries. There is no fixed formula for placing a value on physical pain and mental suffering. You will determine what is fair compensation by applying logic and common sense to the evidence. However, depending on the case, the number of damages awarded could be greater than the amount of financial loss.

Speak to an Attorney About Possible Compensation

Pain and suffering can impact an accident victim far beyond any direct financial burden they experience — and it’s the type of injury that has no specific dollar value. However, there still may be compensation available for those who have experienced these types of injuries.

If you’re involved in an accident and suffer an injury, it’s important that you speak with an attorney quickly. Many cases are time-sensitive and there is often evidence that needs to be gathered that could help your case. The personal injury attorneys at Riddle & Brantley are available 24/7 to speak with you about your case. Contact our office today for a free, no-obligation case evaluation today.