Were you injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence? If so, you may already know that you can seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and other financial losses. But did you know that under Florida personal injury law, you might also obtain money for pain and suffering? Here, the lawyers at Brooks Law Group explain how pain and suffering damages are awarded in The Sunshine State.
What is Pain and Suffering?
In a personal injury claim, pain and suffering refers to the physical and emotional distress caused by your injuries. Compensation can be awarded for losses such as:
- Chronic or debilitating physical pain
- Mental distress or trauma, including anxiety, depression, or PTSD
- Disruptions to your daily personal and professional life
- Limitations on your ability to participate in activities you previously enjoyed
- Disabilities, including loss of eyesight, hearing, smell, taste, touch, speech, memory, or cognitive ability
- Loss of sexual function and/or reproductive ability
- Reduced life expectancy
How Are Pain and Suffering Damages Calculated?
Unlike economic losses like medical bills or lost wages that can be calculated by referring to documents such as bills or pay stubs, there’s no dollar amount that can easily be added up for pain and suffering. Instead, placing a value on pain and suffering compensation is a subjective process that requires consideration of evidence, such as:
- Medical records, including diagnoses and prognoses
- Photographs of injuries
- Mental health records
- Testimony from treating physicians and medical experts
- Statements from vocational or rehabilitation experts
- Testimony from family members, friends, neighbors, co-workers, etc.
- Your own testimony, including diaries or journals that you kept following your injury
In most cases, the more severe the injuries you suffered, the greater the amount of compensation you may recover for pain and suffering. To develop an estimate, lawyers and insurance companies will look at how much juries have awarded for pain and suffering in cases similar to yours. This figure can serve as an anchor point for negotiations for your own case.
What’s the Max I Can Get for Pain and Suffering in Florida?
Florida law does not impose a cap on the amount of compensation you can recover for pain and suffering in personal injury claims. State laws previously put a cap on pain and suffering damages in medical malpractice cases, but those statutes were struck down as unconstitutional by the Florida Supreme Court in 2017.
If you’ve been injured in an accident caused by someone else’s carelessness, the personal injury attorneys at Brooks Law Group will fight aggressively for the pain and suffering damages that you deserve. Call or contact us today for a free initial consultation.