When Can You Pursue Compensation for Pain and Suffering?
Car accidents cause more than physical injuries and property damage. Often, the most significant injuries are the pain and suffering that can linger for months and even years after the accident. This includes physical pain from personal injuries and emotional injuries from PTSD or the loss of a loved one. In Colorado, individuals can pursue up to $250,000 in compensation for pain and suffering.
Pain and Suffering From Physical Injuries
Broken bones, internal injuries, and surgical procedures cause real pain. Even with treatment, some injuries such as whiplash, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and spinal cord fractures can cause persistent pain that modern medical therapies can mitigate, but cannot heal. However, physical injuries are often much less painful than the psychological pain that can occur.
Emotional Pain and Suffering
Motor vehicle accidents are traumatic events, and accident survivors can develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) following a motor vehicle collision in Colorado. When a severe personal injury occurs, or a wrongful death, the risk of developing PTSD is significantly higher. Individuals may also suffer severe depression or other mood disorders that make it difficult to return to work, maintain relationships, or engage in previously enjoyed activities.
Each Case Is Unique
Juries have broad discretion in determining how much compensation for pain and suffering to award. As they deliberate, they will consider the following before they issue a recommendation to the court. These deliberations will include discussions over the following:
- Were the defendant’s actions extreme? Did the defendant behave in a manner with the intent or knowledge that their actions could cause grievous harm to the plaintiff?
- What physical impact did the accident cause to the plaintiff? Did the injuries suffered result in career loss or loss of consortium? Did it cause the loss of limb function or loss of sensation? Does the plaintiff have medical evidence that establishes the extent of their physical injuries?
- What psychological impact did the crash cause? Is the defendant diagnosed with PTSD or other mental impairment? Has the individual suffered a loss of friendships or relationships?
- Is the individual expected to recover in partially or fully recover from their injuries? If so, what is the anticipated timeframe for recovery?
Contact Sloat, Nicholson, & Hoover, P.C. at (303) 447-1144 to speak with our Colorado motor vehicle accident attorneys about your claim. We will help you understand your options for recovering compensation for pain and suffering.
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