What Should You Know About Florida's Limitations on Pain and Suffering Damages?

Can I Sue for Pain and Suffering in Florida?

Pain and suffering are some of the settlement types you can pursue in a personal injury claim. It entails the physical pain, emotional distress, and mental anguish an accident victim experiences after being injured. Under Florida laws, you can recover compensation for pain and suffering as part of non-economic damages rather than a direct monetary loss.

Pursuing settlement for pain and suffering can be complex, but working with skilled lawyers from a civil litigation law firm in Florida can enhance your chances of a favorable outcome. They can provide legal counsel on how the damages are calculated and the limitations you will likely face in your claim.

How Are Pain and Suffering Damages Calculated in Florida?

Calculating how much claimants should be compensated for pain and suffering is complex because the experience is subjective. There is no universal standard for measuring pain; in most cases, judges use their best judgment to determine how much to award for pain and suffering.

However, personal injury lawyers in Florida explain that several factors also come into play in helping juries assign a value to these damages:

  • The age of the injured person
  • The extent and severity of the injury
  • The limitations the injuries impose on the victim's life
  • Potential for ongoing consequences such as extended medical treatment or physical therapy
  • Whether the injured had pre-existing conditions
  • The amount of economic loss suffered

To arrive at the actual amount that you should get for pain and suffering, insurance adjusters can use one of two methods to calculate the damages:

Multiplier Method

The approach entails choosing a number (multiplier) between 1.5 and 5 and multiplying it with the economic or special damages awarded in the case to arrive at the general non-economic damages. The multiplier is chosen depending on the severity of the injury, with a bigger multiplier being used if the injuries are more severe.

Experienced Florida personal injury attorneys can work on maximizing the calculations of your special damages to maximize the non-economic damages. They can carefully account for all medical bills, lost wages, damaged property, and other economic losses to help you recover the maximum settlement possible.

Per Diem Method

Another common method is the per diem method, which entails calculating how much you should be paid from when the accident occurred until you recover. The settlement amount is calculated based on a specific dollar amount per day, but the exact value assigned for every day you experience pain depends on your case's circumstances.

In most cases, personal injury attorneys in Florida and insurance adjusters use a number based on the victim's salary, especially for people who lost their jobs because of the injuries. A higher number is often warranted for more severe injuries, especially if the lawyers can justify it.

A date must also be established for when the per diem method kicks in, often starting from the date of the injuries. A possible end date should also be considered, given that injuries don't heal overnight, and the recovery process may be marked with unexpected complications and difficulties.

Are There Limitations on the Value of Damages Awarded for Pain and Suffering?

Florida personal injury laws don't cap the amount that personal injury victims can obtain in damages for their pain and suffering. The only limitation is if the lawsuit entails medical malpractice, which is capped at $500,000.

In auto accident cases, the no-fault rule can also impact how much you could receive after an accident. When an insurance company gets involved in awarding damages regardless of who was at fault, it can be challenging to recover pain and suffering damages unless the injury is extreme, such as:

  • Significant and permanent loss of important bodily function
  • Substantial and permanent disfigurement or scarring
  • Permanent disability as established by a medical practitioner

Additionally, the pure comparative negligence rule could kick in, reducing the damages you can recover depending on your level of fault in the accident. With all these factors at play, working with aggressive personal injury attorneys in Florida can enhance your chances of being paid the maximum compensation your case is worth.

Statute of Limitations for Pain and Suffering Claims in Florida

You must file a personal injury claim within a specific time after the accident. The following are the statutes of limitations for various types of lawsuits in Florida:

  • Two years for personal injury claims such as car accidents, slip and falls, product liability claims, injuries related to assault or acts of violence
  • Between two and four years for medical malpractice claims
  • Three years for claims involving state actors

Consult experienced personal injury attorneys on the time limits for your type of case and your options for obtaining compensation. Proper planning with the help of skilled legal experts enhances your chances of getting the most favorable outcome and prepares you for the arduous legal battle ahead.

Obtain the Compensation You Deserve with the Help of Skilled Personal Injury Lawyers

Being involved in an accident can have life-changing consequences, exposing you to ongoing pain and suffering that significantly reduces the quality of your life. If you sustained physical or mental injuries following a personal injury accident, don't suffer alone in silence. Lawyers from a reputable civil litigation law firm may be able to help you recover maximum compensation.

The Dellutri Law Group has compassionate personal injury attorneys who can evaluate your pain and suffering claim and help you pursue the damages. We are dedicated to fighting for our clients' rights while ensuring insurance companies don't shortchange them. Legal battles can be challenging, but we are here to fight on your behalf until the end. Call us at 800-391-4337 to schedule a complimentary strategy session.