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How Pain and Suffering is Proven in a Car Accident Injury

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What is Pain and Suffering, and How Does an Auto Accident Lawyer Prove It?

Car accidents are serious. Recovering from such a traumatic event might require legal help, and this is where an auto accident lawyer comes in. 

If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident, it is important to know how pain and suffering damages are proven to help your lawyer maximize your compensation. 

How do you prove pain and suffering? Whether you live in the areas around Lafayette, Metairie, or other parts of Louisiana, this article explains several ways that you can prove that pain and suffering occurred following an injury from a car accident. 

What is pain and suffering?

In the context of auto accidents, pain and suffering is the physical and/or emotional distress that a person suffers as a result of the event. This can include both physical pain and discomfort resulting from the injury, as well as emotional distress such as fear, anxiety, or depression.

What is pain and suffering

There are two types of compensation available to people who have been hurt in car accidents: special damages and general damages.

Special damages, which include economic damages, are monetary losses that can be put into a specific monetary figure. Special damages can include things like medical costs, lost wages due to missed work because of your injury, and car repairs. 

In contrast, general damages are more difficult to quantify. Pain and suffering fall under this category because the severity of pain a victim suffers as a result of an accident and the appropriate compensation is difficult to pinpoint. 

If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident and is experiencing anguish due to the accident, you can hire an experienced auto accident lawyer and file for appropriate compensation.

How Do Insurance Companies Calculate Pain and Suffering Damages?

Calculating pain and suffering damages can be a complex and tricky process. It involves determining the extent and severity of distress, either physical or emotional, caused by the accident.

Each insurance provider uses its own set of procedures and criteria to establish a monetary value for emotional distress. In Louisiana, insurance companies may use a variety of methods to calculate pain and suffering damages, including:

The Multiplier Method

This method involves calculating the total value of the individual’s economic damages (such as medical bills), and then multiplying that amount by a factor (between 1.5 to 5).  

This takes into account the severity of the injury and the amount of pain and suffering that the individual is experiencing. The higher the multiplier, the greater the amount of money awarded for pain and suffering damages. 

The “Per Month” Method

Under this method, the insurance company will assign a monthly value to the pain and suffering that the injured individual is experiencing. This value will then be multiplied by the number of months that the individual experienced pain and suffering. 

The Jurisprudential Method

This method involves looking at the following in order to determine how much money should be awarded for pain and suffering damages:

  • similar cases 
  • applicable case law related to auto accidents in Louisiana
  • the facts of your case.

It’s important to note that these methods are not always used in isolation. Insurance companies may use a combination of methods to calculate pain and suffering damages. 

Also, the specific method used may vary depending on the details of the case.  It is always advisable to consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer who can help you navigate the process of seeking damages for pain and suffering. 

What Factors Are Considered When Awarding Pain and Suffering Damages?

There are several factors insurance companies consider before awarding pain and suffering damages in a personal injury case. These may include:

Severity of the Injury

The severity of physical injuries is a major factor that influences most case outcomes.  The more severe the injury, the greater the compensation is likely to be. A victim with a broken neck as a result of a Louisiana car wreck, for example, is more likely to receive a higher settlement than someone who merely suffered from a light sprain. Also, an insurance company will consider whether there has been any long-term disability or impairment caused by the auto accident. 

Duration of the Injury or Recovery Process  

The duration of the injury is also important. How long the injury lasts and the amount of time the injured person had or still has physical pain, discomfort, or emotional distress are key factors. 

The length of the recovery process and whether any medical procedures were or will be necessary in the future is another significant factor. The longer the injury is expected to last, the greater the pain and suffering damages are likely to be. 

Impact of the Injury on the Claimant’s Daily Life 

The extent to which the injury disrupts the injured person’s ability to work, engage in leisure activities, or maintain relationships is another factor that will be considered.

Other factors include: 

  • age
  • health of the injured person before the injury/accident
  • anticipated future discomfort as a result of the accident.

It’s important to note that this is not an exhaustive list. There are many other factors that can be considered, depending on the specifics and circumstances of the case.

How Can an Injured Person Receive the Full Amount of Pain and Suffering Damages They Are Entitled To?

Receiving compensation requires that the victim of a Louisiana car wreck sufficiently prove and provide evidence of pain and suffering caused by the injury.

Pain and suffering damages are difficult to prove, but it can be done. The burden of proof is on you, the car accident victim, as both the insurance company and your auto accident lawyer will need evidence that shows that the pain and suffering you are experiencing is due to the car accident. 

How Can an Injured Person Receive the Full Amount of Pain and Suffering Damages

Here are a few ways to prove pain and suffering damages:

Creating and Maintaining Medical Records

Medical records can provide evidence of the injury and the required treatment.  These can help demonstrate the extent of the pain and suffering.  This is why it is important to get prompt medical treatment for any injuries sustained in an accident. This will not only help the injured person recover more quickly, but also it will provide documentation of the injury and its severity and duration. 


The injured person should record any changes to their daily routine or activities as a result of the injury. This will help to demonstrate the extent of their pain and suffering. Keeping a diary or journal of the pain and suffering that the injured person has experienced can provide useful evidence of the impact of the injury on their daily life.

Providing Testimony From Friends, Family, and Experts

Friends and family members who have witnessed the injured person’s pain and suffering can provide helpful testimony about the impact of the injury on the person’s daily life. Also, an expert witness, such as a medical doctor or psychologist, can provide testimony about the injury’s extent and severity and its impact on the person’s quality of life.

Taking Photos or Videos 

Photos or videos of the injured person before and after the injury, as well as photos of the injury itself, can provide visual evidence of the pain and suffering caused by the accident.

Hiring a Skilled Auto Accident Lawyer 

Finally, one of the most important steps to take to avoid receiving less than you’re entitled to when seeking pain and suffering damages is to seek legal assistance. 

Hiring an experienced auto accident lawyer who can provide the necessary legal know-how and advise the injured person on their rights can greatly increase settlement chances. An experienced auto accident lawyer will know what questions to ask and can help to ensure that the victim obtains a fair car accident settlement for their pain and suffering. 

Tips for Dealing With Insurance Adjusters After a Car Accident

Insurance adjusters work for the auto insurance companies who assess auto accidents and claims. The job of an auto insurance adjuster is to review the facts and evidence related to a car accident claim, then determine a fair settlement for the auto damage incurred.

It is important to remember that auto insurance adjusters are employed by the company. They may try to minimize your claim or even deny that they are responsible at all. Here are some tips on navigating the insurance adjuster process, so you can get the car accident settlements you deserve. 

Tips for Dealing With Insurance Adjusters

Be Careful What You Say

It’s important to be careful about what you say to the insurance adjuster, as anything you say could be used against you later on. Stick to the facts and avoid speculating or making assumptions.

Do Your Research 

Knowing your rights is important and it’s best to do research before speaking with an auto insurance adjuster. Make sure you know the details of your auto policy and, to the best of your ability, any applicable state laws. If you don’t know where to begin, you might contact an attorney who handles Louisiana car wrecks.

Document Everything

It’s important to document all of your interactions with the adjuster. This includes taking notes during phone calls and sending emails that summarize any conversations you have had. Having this paper trail can help protect you from any potential misunderstandings or false promises. 

Don’t Sign Anything 

Don’t sign any documents or release forms without first consulting with an attorney. You may be asked to sign a release in exchange for a settlement offer. However, signing a release could waive your right to seek additional damages in the future.

Don’t Rush

Do not feel pressured to agree to a settlement prior to fully understanding the scope of your damages. If you are unsure about an offer, don’t be afraid to ask for more time or speak with an auto accident lawyer for advice. It’s important to remember that you are entitled to fair compensation for your injuries and damages, and you may be able to work out a higher settlement by working with an attorney.

Keep Your Cool

Insurance adjusters may try to wear you down with repeated phone calls or low-ball offers. Avoid getting angry or emotional during discussions. This could harm your chances of receiving a fair settlement. Try to stay calm. 

Hire a Lawyer 

If you are dealing with an auto insurance company that is unwilling to make a fair settlement, you may need to consider hiring an auto accident lawyer. A lawyer can help protect your rights and ensure that you receive the car accident settlement for pain and suffering that you deserve.

By following these tips, you can protect yourself and get a car accident settlement that is consistent with the damages you have experienced. If you have any questions or feel like you are being treated unfairly, auto accident lawyers are here to help.

Contact an Experienced Auto Accident Lawyer to Help You Through the Process

If you or a loved one is suffering physical or emotional pain as a result of an auto accident, it’s important to realize you may be entitled to damages.

At The Law Offices of Blaine Barrilleaux, we understand the physical and emotional toll that a car accident can take on you and your family. That’s why we are here to help you through the process, every step of the way. Our team is available 24/7 to provide the legal support and guidance you need. 

If you live in Metairie, LA, or Lafayette, LA, and you are in need of legal support or are “In pain, call Blaine!” Contact us today if you need help.

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