Pain and suffering award isn’t always guaranteed in lawsuits | Opinion

I just learned of a jury trial of a rear car accident in Bucks County in which the victim had neck and back injuries after two years of medical treatment and the jury awarded her $ 17,500 for future medical treatment, but zero for pain and suffering .

It is curious to me why jurors like this find it easy to forgive lost income and medical bills in this case, but they do not give much or sometimes nothing for pain and suffering.

Pennsylvania law requires fair labeling for all items of damage, both economic (such as lost income and medical bills) and non-economic damages (such as pain and suffering, disability and scarring and disfigurement).

One purpose of the judgment is to equate the damage with compensation in order to adequately compensate the injured victim and try to make up for the damage. The other purpose of the judgment is to price carelessness at a fair price in order to encourage people to be more careful and not to cause unnecessary harm.

Regardless of what the law says, juries often fail to obey the law and provide little or no compensation for pain and suffering.

It doesn’t make sense to me. To me, the value of a pain-free life where I can freely do what I want is far more important than having money to pay medical bills or when I’ve made whole up of the time I missed from work will.

Think about the last time you were really sick and felt so bad that if it were permanent you would rather not survive. How much would you have paid at that moment to make the pain and suffering go away?

If you gave someone a wish in life, when they were thinking really clearly, they would wish themselves good health.

Why is that? Because good health is the basis for a happy life. It’s hard to be happy when you’re in pain and unable to do what you like best in life.

Imagine your pain-free and active life was stolen from you because of someone else’s negligence; B. by texting and driving, drinking and driving or even by exceeding the speed limit. Imagine having been injured in a car accident and having constant or regular pain. You couldn’t do the things you used to love: golfing, gardening, or exercising.

Would you think these losses had real monetary value beyond your medical bills and lost income, or would you think that a zero judgment on pain and suffering would be fair?

I wonder why juries tend not to look at personal injury cases through the lens of their own lives and happiness, but rather choose to be overly critical and skeptical of personal injury claimants. I wonder why they are more likely to identify with the defendant and give him a break, rather than putting themselves in the plaintiff’s shoes and making a fair judgment.

Tim Rayne is a Pennsylvania personal injury attorney with MacElree Harvey, Ltd. Tim has law firms in Kennett Square and West Chester, Pennsylvania. Questions can be answered at 610-840-0124 or [email protected].

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