Motor vehicle accidents harm victims in many ways. When severe, accidents can result in physical injuries that are serious or catastrophic. For example, a collision between a small car and a large commercial vehicle can lead to a traumatic brain injury or spinal cord damage, which can both lead to lifelong problems for the victims.
But what about the psychological and emotional harm that victims suffer after a wreck? In legal terms, these are “non-economic” damages — most typically called a “pain and suffering” claim.
What can accident victims expect to receive for their pain and suffering?
Courts in Las Vegas find it challenging to measure pain and suffering and assign it a dollar value. When making their calculations, they must rely on facts and details of the accident and its aftermath for information that can help determine a fair settlement.
Examples of what courts look at to determine pain and suffering include the following:
- Whether the injury harms the victim’s personal or work-related relationships
- Whether the injury alters or limits the victim’s day-to-day habits and tasks
- Whether the injury is likely to have a long-term effect on the victim’s life
- Whether the injury affects the victim’s lifestyle (disrupts sleep patterns, etc.)
Frequently, the value of a non-economic damage claim is directly proportional to the value of the victim’s economic losses. Generally, the bigger the economic losses, the greater the pain and suffering experienced by the victim. This makes sense because serious injuries (that rack up big bills) are usually more traumatic than minor injuries that resolve quickly.
An attorney has the education and negotiation skills to fight on behalf of motor vehicle accident victims whose suffering impacts their lives on a long-term basis. When successful, these can help them manage their new lifestyle and reduce the overall impact of their accident injuries.