pain and suffering

Recovering Damages for Pain and Suffering

The aftermath of an accident can be a traumatic and painful experience for anyone. If you or someone you have been injured, you have probably suffered on all levels: physically, mentally, and economically.

In Utah, you can recover financial compensation, also called “damages,” for that misery. There are certain steps you must take to recover this money, so understanding the process will make your journey easier.

In this article, we take a look at how to correctly move forward when seeking monetary compensation for your woes.

Which Pain and Suffering Damages Are Recoverable?

Utah law recognizes a range of pain and suffering damages.

These include:

  • Physical pain
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of quality of life

Each case is unique, and the amount of damages depends on the specifics of your case.

Pain and suffering damages are considered “non-economic” since they don’t directly pay you back for your expenses. Utah has a cap on non-economic damages. Since 2021, the cap is $480,000 or three times the economic damages, whichever is greater.

Pain and Suffering Damages: Physical vs. Emotional

When pursuing a personal injury case, it's important to differentiate between physical pain and emotional suffering.

Physical pain can be easier to quantify. Courts can view medical records, photos of injuries, workdays missed, career impacts, and so on.

Emotional pain, such as anxiety, depression, or PTSD does not always exhibit physical symptoms. However, it can be just as debilitating. Proving this in court will require statements from mental health professionals, bills for counseling and prescriptions, records of missed work, and so on.

Nelson, Taylor & Associates, PLLC can help you gather the evidence you need to prove your pain and suffering in a personal injury case.

Estimating a Reasonable Amount for Pain and Suffering Damages

When you need reimbursement for an injury, you can generally calculate the amount without too much trouble. You simply add up the money you spent or lost. Requesting pain and suffering damages in a personal injury case is not as straightforward.

It requires considering a wide range of subjective factors, such as:

  • The impact of emotional trauma
  • The intensity and duration of physical pain
  • How much your quality of life has been diminished

To arrive at a reasonable estimate, your attorney will:

  • Compare your case to similar incidents
  • Consider your circumstances and background
  • Consult with medical and psychological professionals

The process is not an exact science, but it helps make sure you are adequately compensated for your loss.

Damages you Could Receive for Past, Present, and Future Pain and Suffering

Past pain and suffering relates to turmoil suffered at the time of the injury.

Present pain and suffering refers to misery experienced during their recovery process.

Future pain and suffering compensates for foreseeable, long-term effects of the incident, such as physical limitations or continued emotional distress.

Utah’s Statute of Limitation for a Pain and Suffering Claim

You have four years from the date of the accident, or two years from the date that you discover the injury, whichever is later.

Finding a Personal Injury Attorney to Help Maximize Your Pain and Suffering Damages

When choosing an attorney, look for someone who has experience handling similar cases. Make sure they are willing to fight for the maximum compensation you deserve. Seek a lawyer who is responsive and communicative. Read online reviews and find references from past clients.

A good attorney will be able to guide you through the claims process, negotiate with insurance companies, and take your case to trial when necessary. Don't settle for less than what you're owed. Hire a personal injury attorney who can stand by your side and help you seek justice.

Our firm is here to help with your personal injury claim. To speak to our team, schedule time with us online or call us directly at (801) 901-7046.