(Gloucestercitynews.net)(Sept. 2, 2020)--If you’ve been involved in an accident, in most cases the physical pain you suffered from your injuries is not the only type of pain you’ve experienced. Being hurt can involve emotional distress as a result of being in constant pain and no longer being able to do the things you enjoyed. It can also be emotionally painful if your injuries interfere with your family life.
When you are suffering due to an accident you didn’t cause, the law states that you may be entitled to damages for your anguish. However, in order to get adequate compensation, you will need to know what qualifies as pain and suffering and how the amount is negotiated.
The Types of Pain and Suffering
There are many forms of pain and suffering, and which ones affect you will be unique to every person and accident. If you’ve been injured you may experience:
- Psychological Trauma: You weren’t expecting the accident to happen, and the suddenness of it may have left you with a whirlwind of unpleasant, upsetting memories and emotion. These can include not being able to trust others and feeling numb.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: If you’re feeling hypervigilant, easily startled, unable to sleep, anxious, and you’re avoiding people and places that remind you of your accident, you may have PTSD.
- Grief: If you lost a loved one in an accident, you may experience profound grief for a long time. It is also normal to grieve for the loss of the life you once knew and the ability to work, sleep, and do the other things you enjoy.
- Anger: You may have difficulty controlling your anger after an accident. Your anger may be directed at the at-fault driver, the insurance company, or the fact that you can no longer provide for your family and have now become a financial burden.
- Frustration: After an accident, you may be left feeling frustrated if you cannot do the things you used to do every day, like dress yourself, prepare your own food, or go to your job.
- Fear: Many people find that fear keeps them from fully living their lives after an accident. For example, a person could be afraid to drive because they are afraid they’ll get into another accident.
- Diminished Quality of Life: Losing your ability to enjoy the things you once loved can cause depression, shame, and a loss of identity. This can happen as the result of becoming disfigured, paralyzed or losing a limb.
- Insomnia: Your brain will be flooded with adrenaline after an accident, which can make it difficult for you to fall asleep or stay asleep. Insomnia can lead to other troubling effects like the inability to concentrate, headaches, and irritability.
How to Get the Highest Pain and Suffering Award
For the best odds of getting the most significant award you possibly can, you’ll want to hire a lawyer.
You may also choose to represent yourself and handle your own negotiations. Some people choose this option when their injuries are minor. Serious injuries are best left to professional lawyers. To negotiate your pain and suffering you’ll want to follow these steps.
Send a Demand Letter
Once the fault has been determined, you’ll need to send a demand letter to the at-fault party’s insurance company. In this letter, you should go into detail and provide evidence regarding the circumstances of the crash. A claims adjuster will most likely offer you a settlement, but it may not be the figure you had in mind. At this point, you’ll need to make a counter-offer.
Go Into Detail During Negotiations
During negotiations go into detail about how the accident has negatively affected your life and the emotional anguish you have suffered as a result. The claims adjuster may be friendly and sympathetic, but it’s important not to let your guard down. They may be trying to lure you into giving them the information they can use to offer you less.
It’s important to adjust your expectations and to be open to settling for less than you demanded, otherwise you’ll end up in court where a jury could decline to give you anything for your pain and suffering. Settling is to your benefit because you’ll get your money faster. If the insurance company refuses to offer you a fair settlement, it’s time to get a lawyer.
According to Anidjar & Levine, who are personal injury lawyers in Florida, calculating the value of your pain and suffering claim is complex because everyone experiences pain and suffering differently. Your attorney will gather the evidence you need to prove your pain and suffering and get fair compensation according to the specifics of your case.