Pain and suffering caused by a personal injury involves any current or future pain experienced by the victim. This includes not only physical, but also any mental and emotional trauma as a result of the initial injury. The state of Colorado allows victims of personal injury accidents to seek damages for any pain they are currently experiencing, and also any pain they may experience in the future.
What Does a Victim Experience During a Personal Injury
While physical pain and suffering are easily recognizable, mental and emotional pain and suffering can be more difficult to quantify. These types of injuries are the by-products or results of the physical damage that has occurred to the victim’s physical body.
Examples of mental pain and suffering include:
- emotional distress
- depression and anxiety
- mood swings
- sleep disturbances
- phobias, such as a fear of driving a car due to an accident
- loss of enjoyment of life
- any mental anguish experienced caused by the victim’s injury
Compensation for a Personal Injury
The state of Colorado uses the term “economic damages” for any type of damage caused by personal injury attorney colorado springs. These are the clear and obvious damages or losses involved, such as doctor’s visits, medical procedures, or time loss at work for medical appointments. Calculating the cost of these damages is simple and straightforward.
There are 4 basic types of economic damages:
- Medical – current and future healthcare including doctor’s bills, pharmacy prescriptions, special medical treatments and other medical expenses
- Loss of income – any potential income that could have been earned
- Property damage – vehicle repairs or reimbursement for personal expenses
- Legal fees – any finances spent filing a lawsuit or lost due to missed time at work
Non-economic damages can be more difficult to calculate. These intangible damages are not based on money that was spent. These types of damages include the following:
- Pain & suffering – current physical pain or future physical pain due to the injury
- Emotional distress – any psychological trauma endured such as depression, anxiety, sleep disturbances or other mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment – an inability of the victim to enjoy his or her normal daily activities
- Physical impairment or disability – permanent physical damage such as brain damage or permanent scars
Limitations on Compensation
There are generally no limitations on economic damages. A victim may sue for the entire amount of medical and health care expenses incurred and the accurate prediction of future medical expenses as well. There are exceptions to this in unique circumstances.
Non-economic damages are more subjective and are limited by statutes. Colorado limits these damages to a minimum of $387,000, after January 1, 2018. Again, there are exceptions to this in extreme situations.
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Being the victim of a personal injury causes extreme personal hardship. Physical pain, medical bills, and income lost due to time off of work are just a few examples of what your life can look like following a serious personal injury. If you have suffered emotional trauma as well it’s even all the more important to know your rights as a victim of such a serious event.
At Kinnaird & Kinnaird, P.C., we are here to help you fight for justice. Contact our office today for a free consultation.