| Read Time: 3 minutes | Personal Injury
calculate pain and suffering california

Sometimes, it’s harder to navigate the emotional pain and suffering that follows a car accident than it is to bear the ensuing medical treatments and procedures.

As the bills pile up, you’ve probably wondered whether you’re entitled to pain and suffering damages.

In California, you may be able to recover damages from the at-fault driver for your pain, suffering, and emotional trauma. 

However, it’s best to have an experienced car accident lawyer assist you.

A lawyer can help you understand California’s complicated pain and suffering restrictions and damage caps.

If you’ve been injured in a car accident in California, Weinberg Law Offices, P.C., can help you obtain the fair compensation you deserve.

Our experienced, compassionate attorneys are devoted to ensuring you get the financial award you’re entitled to.

We offer free consultations and focus on our client relationships above all else. 

How to Calculate Pain and Suffering

Courts consider pain and suffering “non-economic damages” because they’re more subjective than damages like medical bills and lost wages.

Pain and suffering can include physical pain, the emotional trauma your injury causes, anxiety, mental anguish, and loss of enjoyment of life.

For this reason, knowing how to calculate pain and suffering from a car accident in California isn’t always straightforward.

Several factors can affect whether your personal injury settlement or award will cover pain and suffering damages. They include:

  • The intent or recklessness of the defendant’s actions,
  • Your economic loss amount,
  • The severity of your physical injury, and
  • The strength of the evidence.

After taking these factors into account, insurance companies often apply one of two rules to determine car accident injury awards.

The Multiplier Method

The multiplier method is the most common method insurance companies use. With the multiplier method, your total calculable economic damages (medical bills, lost wages, etc.) are your base figure.

They are multiplied by a factor to calculate pain and suffering. For example, if you have $20,000 in economic damages and a multiplier of “3” is used for your pain and suffering, your award amount would be $60,000.

This is where the help of a personal injury attorney will be crucial. They will argue for a higher multiplier than the insurance company initially offers.

The Per Diem Method

Personal injury attorneys generally prefer the per diem method. If your attorney chooses this method, they will ask a jury to assign your pain and suffering a daily rate.

The jury will then multiply this rate by the number of days it thinks your pain and suffering will last.

If the per diem method is applied, a dollar figure will be assigned every day for your pain and suffering until you recover fully from your accident.

For example, if $100 is selected, and you take 100 days to improve, your damages will be valued at $10,000.

It’s noteworthy that California Civil Code 3333.4 prohibits some motorists from recovering compensation for pain and suffering. This provision includes uninsured drivers.

If you’ve been in a car accident, suffered damages, and are uninsured, an experienced attorney at Weinberg Law Offices may be able to help.

Contact Weinberg Law Offices

If you or somebody you care about was injured in a car accident, Weinberg Law Offices could help you secure the highest award for your pain and suffering.

Our experienced attorneys understand insurance carrier methods and are ready to fight for your rights.

We offer free initial consultations and take cases on a contingency basis, so you never have to pay any money upfront.

Contact us today at 818-697-1079 to meet with a skilled car accident attorney.

Disclaimer: This content should not be construed as legal advice.

Author Photo

As a personal injury attorney, my mantra is that there is no such thing as a “small case”. I will give 100% matter how big or small a case may be. I am fluent in English, Hebrew, and Spanish, languages which I use regularly in my practice.

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