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How To Sue for Pain and Suffering in California With A Personal Injury Lawsuit

Updated: Nov 11

Learn Everything About Non-Economic Damages And How Monetary Equivalents Are Decided

Emotional distress, loss of community, loss of companionship, and many intangible losses can be compensated under California personal injury Law. That said, how do you prove emotional distress? How do you put a price on something intangible?


So, let's talk about emotional distress and non-economic damages, as a prescreened California Personal Injury Lawyer will handle them.


Emotional Distress Examples in California

Non-economic damages refer to a wide range of circumstances. You may, for example, feel despair, anxiety, or suffering due to your injuries.


Other potential non-economic repercussions include:

  • Emotional or psychological stress

  • Disfigurement of the body

  • Being unable to engage in a pastime

  • Being unable to progress in your career

  • Inability to travel

  • Lack of ability to engage in physical activities

If you can show that the other party's actions have had a detrimental impact on your life, you may be entitled to pursue compensation through a personal injury claim. With the guidance of a prescreened California Attorney For Personal Injury, you can build a case that gets you the most out of your personal injury claim.


There is no cap on the amount of compensation you can get for non-economic damages in California. However, non-economic damages are set at $250,000 in California regarding medical malpractice. Contact a prescreened California Attorney for Personal Injury near you to understand possible limitations on your emotional pain and suffering lawsuit.

how to sue for emotional damages

How Do You Prove Emotional Distress In California?

Wondering how to sue for emotional damages? The quickest answer: proof.

In California, you and your personal injury lawyer must show all the emotional and other intangible effects you suffered from the accident.


That said, here are a few ways emotional distress can be argued:

  • Your financial losses contributed to emotional distress.

  • You suffered PTSD and other psychological struggles due to the accident.

  • You've been disfigured due to the accident, leading to a loss of confidence and willingness to engage with others, or will go out in public.

  • You lost the ability to engage in social interactions.

  • You lose the ability to do everyday tasks like moving around or doing chores.

Of course, you also want to supply this with more evidence through witnesses. For example, you can ask friends and family to prove the everyday difficulties you've experienced.


Another tip is to journal. Take note of the physical and emotional struggles you have experienced since day one. This is a great way to build a picture of your everyday struggles that resulted from the accident. Not to mention, many California Personal Injury Attorneys suggest victims do this, as it can also help when building and contextualizing your claim.


What's The Pain And Suffering Calculator For California Claims?

There are two standard methods for measuring pain and suffering damages in California. But unfortunately, there is no single clear formula for how insurance companies should calculate pain and suffering compensation judgments.

As a result, it can be challenging to understand how insurers arrive at their settlement estimates. However, there are two standard methods for determining pain and injury as a baseline:

The Multiplier Approach

The multiplier approach calculates the overall economic losses (medical bills, lost income, and so on). A multiplier is then chosen to assess pain and suffering. For example, if a car accident victim has $10,000 in economic losses and a pain and suffering multiplier of '2' is applied, their pain and suffering will be evaluated at $20,000.


The Rule of Per Diem

Once the survivor has fully recovered from their injury, the per diem rule assigns a cash amount for pain and suffering for each day. For example, if a $100 per diem was decided and the sufferer required 100 days to fully recover medically, the pain and suffering damage would be assessed at $10,000.


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