The purpose of the civil law system is to compensate victims for the injuries they suffered through no fault of their own. To this end, you can receive an amount of money called “damages.” Some damages reimburse you for medical expenses and lost wages. But some injuries are hard to quantify in dollars and cents. Nevertheless, the law still allows you to receive compensation for these intangible injuries, like pain and suffering. Read on to learn how to prove pain and suffering damages so that you can receive fair compensation.
Understand Pain and Suffering Damages
Pain and suffering include the physical and mental pain of suffering an injury. Of course, receiving money is a poor substitute for being pain-free and having your old life back again. Nevertheless, money is the best compensation that the legal system can come up with.
One way to think about pain and suffering damages is to ask, “How much would you have to pay me to suffer that injury?” For example, being completely paralyzed is not something most people would want to suffer. For that reason, a juror might believe that you deserve millions of dollars in pain and suffering damages if you are paralyzed.
Keep a Pain Journal
One way to helpfully document your pain and suffering is to keep a journal. In this journal, you can write down how you are feeling every day and identify the location and severity of any pain. Be sure to be as detailed as possible and record entries every day.
Also, note how the pain has interrupted your life. For example, you might have trouble sleeping more than a few hours at night, or you might have withdrawn from family and friends. Remember not to exaggerate—for example, it’s unusual for someone not to sleep at all or completely cut themselves off from all human contact. Be as factual as possible, but definitely include all of the ways your injury has reduced your quality of life.
The people who know and love you can also testify as to how the injury has impacted your life. For example, your spouse can testify as to whether the injury has interfered with your sexual intimacy and how it has changed your mood. Other people who can testify include:
- Your children
- Your friends
- A therapist or psychologist
- Your doctor
- Your minister or another faith leader
You’ll also need medical records to help show pain and suffering. Ideally, you should tell your doctor about the location and severity of any pain so that the doctor is aware of it and writes it down in your medical records. Also, you should hold onto all prescription bottles for any pain pills you have been prescribed. It can be very dramatic at trial to pull out a big plastic bag full of orange prescription drug bottles.
Call a Georgia Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, you might be able to receive compensation. At Mitnick & Associates, we fully review your case to identify what compensation you can receive. Our aggressive personal injury attorneys are dedicated to compensating you for all of your injuries—including pain and suffering. Contact us today at 770-408-7000. Serving the Alpharetta area, including Milton and Roswell.