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How to calculate pain and suffering using the multiplier method?

On Behalf of | Sep 14, 2023 | personal injury |

If you get hurt, whether it is from an accident, slipping and falling, or medical malpractice, it often leads to seeking compensation for the harm you have suffered. This is a basic part of personal injury cases, especially when someone else’s negligence caused the incident.

However, while figuring out things like medical bills and lost wages is easy, some damages are trickier to measure. These are the intangible losses a victim goes through after an injury. One common example of this is noneconomic damages related to pain and suffering.

What is the pain and suffering multiplier?

The multiplier method is commonly used in personal injury claims to calculate the compensation for pain and suffering. Here is how it applies in personal injury claims:

  • Assess special damages: First, you calculate your special damages in a personal injury claim. These are the quantifiable financial losses you have incurred due to the injury. This may include medical bills, property damage, lost wages and other out-of-pocket expenses related to the accident.
  • Choose a multiplier: Once you have the total special damages, you and the insurance company (or the court) agree on a multiplier. This multiplier typically ranges from 1.5 to 5, although it can vary depending on the specifics of the case. The chosen multiplier represents the severity of your pain, suffering, and other non-economic damages.
  • Apply the multiplier: Multiply your total special damages by the chosen multiplier. This gives you an estimate of the compensation that you may receive for pain and suffering.

Other influential factors

It is worth emphasizing that while the multiplier method offers a simple way to gauge noneconomic damages like pain and suffering, the final figure depends on various other considerations, including:

  • The seriousness of your injuries
  • How long it takes for you to recover
  • The emotional distress you endure
  • Significant disruptions to your daily life
  • Testimony from experts in the field

While it is not a precise science, the multiplier selection process aims to provide fair compensation for what you have to endure. Though it might not be as easy, knowing how to calculate these damages can help you set realistic expectations on the potential range of compensation they might receive.

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