Factors That Can Be Used to Demonstrate Pain and Suffering
The first and most obvious is Type of Injury. This is straightforward enough – the worse the injury, the more compensation you will likely receive for it. Permanent or lingering injuries will likely get you even more compensation, based on the fact that you will have to deal with your injury for long time, possibly for the rest of your life. Two of the biggest such injuries are:
1. Scars - The size and placement of scars will play a role in how much you are compensated for them. Facial and neck scars will almost certainly increase the damages awarded, even if they are small, because of the prominent placement of them. Scars that can be seen while wearing clothing are also obvious in placement and can increase the settlement. Other scars which are large/cause embarrassment, even if they cannot be seen while wearing most outfits, can also add to the settlement.
Scars can also cause stiffness and loss of flexibility. If it occurs at a joint or an area of the body that stretches or flexes, a loss of mobility in that area may be permanent, and therefore entitle you to a larger settlement.
It may be a good idea to have an assessment done as to how much removing the scar(s) would cost. This can both be included in your medical bills and help demonstrate to the insurance company how much your injury is worth.
2. Back or joint injury - Damage done to any area of the spine or to joints will, in all probability, lead to some sort of a permanent injury, even if it is small. Getting your doctor to note this in your file will increase your chances of a higher settlement.
The second factor is the Treatment(s) Needed. How expensive are they? How long will they last? Will they have to be administered on a permanent basis? (E.g. dialysis treatments, pain medications, etc.) Were invasive and/or painful surgeries or other procedures needed? All of these questions should be taken into account when preparing your claim.
The next factor is Medication. How strong is(are) the medication(s) needed, both for healing and for pain control? How long will you have to be on them for? The stronger the medication(s), and the longer you have to be on them for, the higher your claim should be. If you have adverse side effects or allergic reactions to some medications and therefore taking medications is more difficult for you, that can also increase your chances of a higher settlement.
Also to be considered is Length of Recovery, which is pretty straightforward as well; the longer it takes you to fully recover, the higher your claim should be. Again, if you will never or probably never fully recover from your injuries, a doctor’s note stating this will be helpful towards your claim.