How the Court Handles Pain and Suffering
Although the unique circumstances of each case are used to calculate pain and suffering, the Supreme Court of Canada has capped the maximum amount at approximately $364,000 (adjusted for inflation) for non-pecuniary damages. You’re only likely to be paid the maximum if the accident resulted in a catastrophic personal injury, such as one that results in a brain injury or paralysis. A judge can, however, assess how the injury has affected your life, your ability to function, and your overall enjoyment of day-to-day activities. Compensation can therefore be assessed in a court setting.
The Personal Injury Lawyer’s Role in Assessing Pain and Suffering
Once a law firm starts working on your claim, accident lawyers will collect all the information relevant to the incident and its aftermath. Unlike medical bills, property damage, and loss of income, non-economic damages are not easy to pin a dollar amount on. Pain and suffering refers to the physical and emotional stress, anxiety, and loss of enjoyment of life that directly results from personal injuries sustained in an accident.
The principle underlying the assessment of damages in personal injury is that the injured person is to be placed in the position they would have been in had the accident not occurred. Your personal injury lawyer will help determine the value of your general damages by using this framework. This is accomplished by examining a number of factors:
- Pre-accident health and lifestyle
- Nature of your injuries
- The effect the injuries have had on your life
- How well you have recovered from your injuries
- The effect the injuries may have on your life going forward
Your personal injury lawyer will also look at the amount of damages that judges and juries have awarded people who have suffered similar injuries. There is no formula that Ontario courts or lawyers will use to calculate general damages, however. Much will depend on the unique circumstances of your case.
It is important to remember that general damages are just one part of a personal injury case. Personal injury lawyers will also look at how the accident has affected your employment, medical costs, and housekeeping ability.
Follow Your Lawyer’s Advice on Pain and Suffering
The pain and suffering from a personal injury can’t easily be quantified monetarily. However, personal injury lawyers will obtain the necessary information from you so they can negotiate a fair settlement. Mackesy Smye has a team of accident lawyers who have successfully completed many Hamilton personal injury cases, all of which involve an element of pain and suffering.
Call today for a consultation and a professional hand to guide you towards compensation from your accident.