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How Much Is Emotional Distress Worth - morgan and morgan
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How Much Is Emotional Distress Worth

How Much Is Emotional Distress Worth

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How Much Is Emotional Distress Worth?

It can be very frustrating to live through any situation that was caused by another person's negligence or irresponsible behavior. However, it can be difficult to answer a question like, “How much is emotional damages worth?” Emotional damages and emotional injuries are notoriously complex, which makes it very important to retain the services of an experienced and qualified lawyer who can walk you through the complicated legal process of recovering compensation.

Since your life has been turned upside down by the accident, you might even think it's hard to put a number on how that's affected you now and will continue to impact you into the future.

There is no simple answer that an attorney can give you because there are so many different things that influence it. However, the sooner you speak with a lawyer the better position you'll be in to understand the complex issues at play, and will be able to get the necessary details to understand the recovery of compensation.

Reach out to Morgan & Morgan today for a free, no-obligation case evaluation to get started.

Actual Costs vs. Emotional Damages

Many people who are hurt in personal injury accidents may have hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills. Personal injury laws in your state allow you to recover compensation for those bills when someone else's negligence is responsible for those injuries. However, in personal injury cases, it is often the case that the emotional pain and suffering that comes with a victim's injuries can have far-reaching impacts, too.

It is harder to calculate the total of emotional distress and emotional injuries an incident has caused because these are personal and subjective to the victim who has lived through it. It's important to look at typical compensation for emotional injuries and accidents to have a decent understanding of some of the baseline things that go into determining these amounts.

For example, when evaluating research between 2004 and 2010 for emotional injuries, the award median is $81,000. The award range, however, went from $1 to $188 million, so there's a great deal of variation in these different cases. The median award is approximately 12 times less than the average award of $1,072,000. These very large jury verdicts, however, do lift the average.

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  • How Are Emotional Injuries Calculated in Wrongful Death Cases?

    One of the biggest explanations for why there's such a distinction between the median and the average emotional distress injuries in lawsuits is that there are two different types of emotional injury lawsuits: wrongful death and non-wrongful death. Some states have caps on noneconomic damages in certain cases, such as medical malpractice or wrongful death.

    If you have further questions about how this works, your lawyer can help explain the legal process to you so that you know what to expect.

    Only you can truly tell the story of your injuries, but you must also trust your lawyer to be able to make the case for you if you've suffered emotional distress following an incident caused by someone else.

    A wrongful death case means that something devastating has impacted your family, and there's no telling how many people or the depths in which it affected them. Turning to a lawyer during these challenging times is recommended to help you get the clarity and next steps required if you intend to pursue emotional distress in a lawsuit like this.

  • What Are the Types of Emotional Injuries in Non-Death Cases?

    If someone has suffered serious injuries, they may be entitled to emotional distress compensation. These are some common emotional injury cases:

    • Loss of consortium.
    • Anxiety about possible death or future disease associated with an accident.
    • Post-traumatic stress.
    • Emotional distress of being concerned about not seeing your child grow up.
    • Emotional distress associated with witnessing a death or an injury to another person.
    • Depression about the far reaching impact of your physical injuries.

    The value of emotional injuries in these cases varies tremendously and it is important to work with qualified legal representation as soon as possible. Finding experienced attorneys like those working at Morgan & Morgan is critical for getting a good baseline of what is fair in an emotional distress case. This is because many of these cases are settled outside of court. This means that you must have an attorney who is familiar with when a settlement offer presented to you is far too low for the injuries you have sustained. Having a decent baseline or range will help you respond more confidently if the other side presents a settlement offer that is far out of scope of the severity of your injuries. The sooner that you can retain legal counsel, the easier it will be to answer these questions.

  • How Do We Quantify Emotional Distress Damages?

    There are two different methods for calculating emotional distress. The first of these is known as the multiplier method.

    You start by gathering all of your current and projected future financial costs of your injuries, and then multiply this amount by a number that is between 1.5 and 5. The more evidence you have that you have been severely impacted by emotional distress, the higher your multiplier number will be.

    The second method for determining emotional distress injuries is known as the per diem method. In this situation, a daily rate of compensation is applied to your level of emotional distress.

    The per diem or daily rate is associated with the nature of your emotional distress, and the total of days which could go as far as several decades is determined based on expert testimony and your medical records. As you can see in either one of these calculation methods for emotional distress, it is very important to have evidence indicating how your life has been changed by the accident. Keeping detailed notes about your situation is very important because this will help to make a stronger case. Because emotional distress damages cannot be calculated as easily as actual damages, it can be very frustrating for people to communicate with an insurance company and arrive at a final number. Talented legal representation can make a big difference in determining, "How much is emotional distress worth?"

  • What Counts as Emotional Distress?

    Emotional distress can include things such as horror, nervousness, suffering, humiliation, shock, worry, anxiety, and grief. As a baseline, many courts look at whether or not an ordinary and reasonable person would not be able to cope with the level of emotional distress associated with the accident.

    If you're not sure how to tell the story of your emotional injuries after an accident, let the lawyers at Morgan and Morgan help you. We'll guide you through the process.

  • How Can I Prove Emotional Distress?

    There are many different ways to illustrate how emotional distress has impacted your life after an accident. This can include:

    • Testimony from friends and loved ones.
    • Expert testimony.
    • Daily notes and journals.
    • Medical records.
    • Photo or video evidence.
    • Your testimony.

    If you have further questions about how this process works and how best to present a comprehensive case that your life has been significantly changed because of someone else's negligent activity, it is vital to get an attorney as soon as possible. Signing a settlement offer presented by the other side before you have a decent idea about how to protect your interest could lead to catastrophic consequences. Once you sign a settlement agreement to accept a particular amount of money, you are no longer able to negotiate that amount of money, this means that it is crucial to be able to go through the process of recovering compensation with a qualified and dedicated lawyer.

    The lawyers at Morgan and Morgan know how unsettling the emotional impacts of an accident can be. It's why we work so hard with the help of expert witnesses and our extensive resources to prepare these kinds of cases for court. If you have been subjected to emotional distress, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact Morgan & Morgan today for a free, no-obligation case evaluation to get started.

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Last updated on May 11, 2023

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