Calculating Chronic Pain After An Accident: How Can One Place A Value On That?

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According to WHO statistics, road traffic accidents account for nearly 1.25 million deaths leaving 25-50 million people injured or disabled. 

Pursuing for compensation from the defendants will not undo the damages but will help you financially to claim money for rebuilding your life.  

An injury lawyer can help you claim both economic and non-economic losses after an accident:

  • Economic Losses: Include damages that are easily calculable like:

Cost of Medical bills

Cost of Lost wages

Cost of property damage 

  • Non-Economic Losses: These damages also called “Pain and sufferings” are not readily measurable. 

Physical pain (temporary or permanent)

Physical disability (Paralysis, Spinal Injury)

Mental anguish (Anxiety, PTSD)

Loss of family member 

Loss of job/ career

How to Measure Pain and Sufferings? 

It is challenging to measure chronic pain after an accident as there are no bills or receipts. But there are methods developed in law that can help you to claim this type of damage.

Which are:

  • Multiplier Method:

This is a more common method to measure chronic pain with the formula:


  [(Medical bills; past and future) ×                    (Multiplier)] + Total Economic Damages (Medical bills + lost wages + property damage)   = Total Claimable Value   

The multiplier value ranges from 1 to 5 depending on how severe the injuries are. For example:

If the medical bills totals upto $5,000; lost wages are $5,000 and multiplier decided is 2. Then the total claimable value will be (5000 * 2) + (5000 + 5000) = $20000.

  • Per Diem Method: 

Some lawyers and insurance companies use Pier Diem Method for calculating amount for sufferings. PIER DIEM is a Latin word which means “by the day”. This method derives compensation value by measuring daily pain and sufferings.

A certain monetary amount is decided by lawyers to pay patient from the day of accident until the point of maximum recovery. For example:

The person got into a car accident on October 5 and will have maximum recovery after operation and physical therapy on January 5. The monetary amount is decided to be $100/day. Then the total claimable value will be 91* 100 = $9100

Who Will Decide My Total Claimable Value?

Your lawyer and insurance agencies mutually anticipate the compensation value. Insurance companies are adroit at making arguments that victims are overstating their pain to claim more money. 

A professional lawyer is good at dealing with such insurance companies. He/she take into account the following factors to predict the multiplier values and hence your rightful money for the damages and losses you suffered:

  • The severity of accidental injuries.
  • The impact of injuries on your life, relationships and career.
  • The length of time from accident till full recovery.
  • The type and amount of medical treatment that you will need.

Therefore it is extremely necessary that you hire an expert injury lawyer who knows the value of your sufferings and will help you to recover your damages. 

Author: The Benton Law Firm is a personal injury law firm with offices in Texas

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