Why Rating Your Pain Matters After Your Tennessee Injury Case
Posted in Personal Injury on November 25, 2019
If you or a loved one have been injured due to the careless or negligent actions of someone else, you may be entitled to compensation. This can include coverage for your medical bills and lost wages. It can also include the recovery of something called pain and suffering damages. These can be harder to quantify than other types of damages, and a key part of this is rating your pain after an injury.
Insurance companies don’t like pain and suffering damages
Insurance companies have one goal in mind – to make a profit. This means that they will do everything they can to lower the amount of money you are paid in a settlement. While they may not be able to avoid paying things you can hand over documents to prove (medical bills and lost wages), they will attempt to get away with not paying any pain and suffering damages. They will want to see proof that you have actually suffered, as harsh as that sounds.
How to rate pain and suffering damages
There are various types of pain and suffering damages. Today, we want to discuss the physical pain and suffering a person may experience after an injury occurs. This includes the pain a person feels when an incident occurs, in the immediate aftermath, and during the course of their recovery.
Consider the following serious injuries that commonly lead to insurance settlements or personal injury lawsuits:
- Broken and dislocated bones
- Severe lacerations
- Internal organ damage
- Internal bleeding
- Spinal cord injuries
- Whiplash injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
Each of these has the potential to cause significant pain for a victim. It is important that you let your doctor or physical therapist know your level of pain each time you see them so they can document that in your medical records. In most cases, a doctor will ask you to rate your pain on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the worst pain you’ve ever felt and a one being little to no pain at all.
While you may indeed be in plenty of pain due to your injuries, you do not want to exaggerate or lie about how bad the pain is. This will help the insurance companies. They want you to lie about your pain. You may think you are helping your case by saying your pain is at an 11, but really be hurting your chances of receiving compensation for your pain.
When you talk to your doctor, give them a scale for your pain from the previous 48 to 72 hours to get a full picture of the severity. Of course, you should tell your doctor about specific episodes of extreme pain, but these episodes are not a clear picture of your everyday experience.
Do not underestimate your pain
Keeping all of that in mind, you should also never underestimate your pain. Tell your doctor or physical therapist the truth. If you are hurting, tell them you are hurting. If the pain is a constant ache, tell them about it.
Are there caps on pain and suffering?
In Tennessee, state law places a cap on pain and suffering damages at $750,000. However, there are higher limits in place for catastrophic loss or injury, such as the loss of a limb or a spinal cord injury.