The legal concept of “pain and suffering” refers to the portion of your case value compensating for the physical pain and mental distress you experienced due to another party’s negligence. Most prospective clients want to know, What is the average settlement for pain and suffering in Kentucky? Unfortunately, there’s no average pain and suffering settlement we can share. That’s because every case is unique. Your settlement could differ significantly from another person—even if you have similar injuries. However, there are several specific factors that can affect the value of your settlement.
What Is the Average Settlement Amount for Pain and Suffering?
As we mentioned, there is no average settlement for pain and suffering—at least not an accurate one. You might find sites that claim the average payout for pain and suffering is X dollars. However, we don’t recommend relying on these sites or figures. That’s because so many factors can impact your potential case value.
Even cases involving similar circumstances can resolve for vastly different amounts. Why? Because of differences in injury severity, complications, damages, available insurance coverage, liability, and geographic region. If you want to know more about what your case is worth, contact the experienced legal team at Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC.
Factors That Impact the Average Pain and Suffering Payout
Several factors can impact your potential settlement amount. Let’s look at a few of the most common ones.
Injury Type and Severity
A person who experiences severe physical trauma, such as a spinal cord injury or traumatic brain injury, may require a more extended recovery period. The victim likely cannot work and needs comprehensive round-the-clock assistance.
Consider two separate injured victims with the same type of leg fracture. One victim recovers beautifully with no residual complaints, while the other needs multiple surgeries and walks with a limp. The second victim likely has a higher pain and suffering claim.
Liability is a crucial factor in determining a pain and suffering settlement. That’s because Kentucky is a comparative negligence state. You can be partially at fault and still collect a portion of your damages. However, your overall compensation reflects your percentage of liability. For example, if a jury determines you’re 30% at fault, you’ll only receive 70% of your damages. If you’re 80% at fault, you’ll only receive 20%.
Your total economic losses also impact a potential pain and suffering award or settlement. Cases with greater medical expenses or lost wages often equate to a higher pain and suffering award.
Available Insurance Coverage
Another essential factor to consider is how much available insurance coverage there is. It won’t necessarily matter how severe your injuries are if the defendant has only $50,000 in available liability coverage. To pursue additional compensation beyond that, you must look to other responsible parties or sue the defendant directly. Suing the defendant directly isn’t necessarily recommended unless they have significant assets to pay for any court judgment. You might also be able to file an uninsured/underinsured motorist claim through your insurance if your injuries are from a car accident and you carry UM/UIM coverage on your policy.
Calculating Pain and Suffering Settlement Values
Insurance companies typically use one of two industry models to calculate your potential pain and suffering damages—the per diem model and the multiplier method.
Per Diem Method of Calculating Pain and Suffering
The “per diem” model calculates the daily rate of pain and suffering and multiplies it by the number of days you were affected. For instance, if a plaintiff experiences pain and suffering for 100 days at a daily rate of $100, the settlement amount for pain and suffering would be $10,000. The daily rate often correlates to your average daily salary rate.
The Multiplier Method
This method calculates your potential settlement amount by multiplying your economic losses by a specific factor, typically between 1 and 5. Higher multipliers are reserved for the most severe cases. The economic damages that make up the base include losses such as medical expenses, missed time from work, and other related financial losses stemming from the injury. For instance, if you incur $50,000 in economic damages and the multiplier is 3, your potential settlement amount for pain and suffering would be $150,000.
How Do These Calculation Methods Compare?
While these models can help determine a ballpark figure for the settlement amount, it’s important to remember that they are not definitive. It would be best if you did not solely rely on them. Your settlement amount will ultimately depend on the circumstances of your case, these various factors, and the negotiation skills of your attorney.
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach when calculating your potential pain and suffering settlement. Your case is unique and deserves a thorough analysis of the facts and circumstances involved. And if your attorney cannot negotiate a fair settlement with the other party’s insurance company, a jury or judge will ultimately decide what fair and acceptable compensation is.
Contact a Kentucky Personal Injury Lawyer
If you’re searching online for answers to questions like, What is the average settlement for pain and suffering? don’t hesitate to contact Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC today. With nearly 20 years of representing personal injury victims, we know what it takes to maximize your potential pain and suffering settlement. Contact our office today to schedule an initial consultation and learn how we can help.