Victims of motorcycle accidents are entitled to recover for their damages. This may include reimbursement for medical expenses, lost wages, and compensation for “pain and suffering.” That raises the question of what does pain and suffering mean and how much can you recover?
Pain and suffering includes compensation for the physical pain you endured as a result of your injuries. Reimbursement for medical expenses is straight forward. If you have a $5,000.00 bill from the emergency room, the person who caused the accident should reimburse you for the expense. But how do you put a dollar amount on your pain and suffering?
Medical records are the first place we look. Doctors regularly take notes to document a patient’s pain level. You can enhance your claim as well by taking photographs of bruising, road rash, scarring or deformities. Also, you may want to document in a journal or diary about the pain you are enduring on a daily basis.
Physical pain is only one element of a claim for pain and suffering. Other aspects of your life may have been adversely impacted by the accident. For example, we will argue that you suffered:
- Loss of enjoyment: you were not able to ride your motorcycle, perform duties around the home, play with your children, and/or take vacations due to your injuries
- Loss of consortium: as a result of your injuries, your spouse lost the benefits of your relationship including loss of sexual relations, affection and/or companionship
- Mental distress: many riders feel uneasy about getting on their bike again after an accident and/or suffer from nightmares or post-traumatic stress disorder
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Obtaining compensation for your pain and suffering is an inexact science. You will work with your motorcycle accident lawyer to establish a sum you feel comfortable with. It will be based on the amount of your physical pain, the amount of your medical bills, the severity of your injuries and the evidence (such as medical records, photographs and your journal) in our possession.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact the lawyers at Kass & Moses.