Pain and Suffering Damages

The law of North Carolina and most states allow recovery for pain and suffering.  However, there is no other area of damages that has a tendency to cause reluctance or rejection by juries.  Pain is not an actual loss like medical bills or lost wages.  There is nothing the jury can put their finger on to evaluate such losses.  All pain is simply what is verbally relayed by the plaintiff, so it is sometimes viewed with suspicion unless the pain is easy to understand as in broken bone cases.

One way that I like to present pain and suffering is to focus on the effect that it has on the plaintiff.  Frankly, pain is a part of life.  We have to learn to deal with it the best way that we can.  However, if it is so much that it requires pain medications, then it will effect life itself.  Having to live on pain medications is not a full life.  You will live in a part-daze sometimes going through the motions with the building fear and knowledge that your old enemy, pain, will return soon.  Pain that is debilitating and effects the things you do can be explained to the jury.  Attorneys should focus on these activities that are now lost.  For example pain and suffering may include the inability to play with your children in the floor.  This actually is a terrible loss that jurors can understand.  This loss of life activities is a more appropriate explanation of damage than simply telling a jury that you are in pain.