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What Factors Determine Your Pain and Suffering Award?

08th April 2010
By Wendy Moyer in Personal Injury
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Have you been in an accident or are you currently the plaintiff who has filed a personal injury claim? Are you involved in a lawsuit where your attorney is trying to get the court to award you with a pain and suffering award as part of the compensation you both feel is your due? You might find that it's pretty hard to get the amount of money you believe you deserve and you may be wondering why. Read this article and find out three of the most common factors that influence the court in their determination of pain and suffering awards.

First of all, judges are often the only people who determine the amount of your award. They make their decisions primarily based on the weight of the evidence that was brought to light in your trial. The three main things they look at are your credibility, your need, and your age.

How Credible Are You?

In order to receive a relatively large amount of money as a pain and suffering award the judge and jury will have to believe you. In their hearts they must feel that you are telling the absolute truth about your injuries.

They will carefully scrutinize your medical records, go over your testimony with a fine tooth comb, recall your courtroom demeanor, and in their minds they will compare how you behaved in the courtroom from one day to the next.

Obviously if you are claiming that you have a severe back injury but they find that you still play golf three times a week you probably won't get the type of monetary remuneration you envisage. However if you actually have spent just about every day in bed since your accident because it's just too painful to get up and move around there's a good chance you'll receive a much more substantial award.

What Are Your Needs?

The amount of money you need and the way the accident affected your life plays a big role in the court's decision as to how much compensation you will receive.

Your judge and jury will definitely look at your level of need when they determine your pain and suffering compensation. If you're independently wealthy and don't need a lot of money for your day-to-day and long-term expenses you will most likely not be as substantially compensated as a person who cannot perform their minimum wage job for a number of months because of an accident.

How Old Are You?

Depending on your judge and your jury, your age can either work for you or against you. Let's say you are young. If the jury or the judge feels that your potential to earn money has been compromised you could receive a large award.

On the other hand, everything else being equal, the court might feel that because you are young you will have a lot of time ahead of you to be able to earn a lot of money. If that's the case you won't be awarded a substantial amount of money for your pain and suffering.

No matter what your age, though, part of their determination for your personal injury claim will be affected by the quality of your legal representation.


Next, to find out more about initiating a personal injury claim from a personal injury law firm whose clients have been awarded more than one billion dollars, go to => now. Wendy Moyer on behalf of Sokolove Law.
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