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Accident and Injury Lawyer Blog:

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Stuart Kerner

Washington Heights Lawyer for Personal Injury Cases Shares What Pain And Suffering Means

As a lawyer representing Personal Injury cases, I am often asked the question: “What Does Pain and Suffering Mean?”  Well, let me explain. The term “Pain and Suffering” is the legal term for the physical and emotional stress caused from an injury and refers to the compensation an injured party may receive for post-traumatic issues such as:

•  Mental anguish and emotional distress
•  Loss of enjoyment of life
•  The physical pain and suffering they experience as a result of the accident
•  Permanent disability
•  Disfigurement

This is a non economic recovery and is arrived at by subjective analysis by a jury or during settlement negotiations. This is different from economic damages which is based upon loss of wages and cost of medical bills which can be calculated from records and documents.

Pain and suffering damages can be awarded for past, present, or for future pain and suffering, depending on the injuries  and how severe they are.

One of the difficult parts of settling a personal injury claim is that unlike medical bills, or lost wages, pain and suffering is difficult to determine because each individual person’s pain threshold is different. Two people can have similar injuries, like a broken arm, but have different recoveries and different levels of pain. That is why a monetary value placed upon “Pain and Suffering” is subjective.

So how do we generally place dollar values on “Pain and Suffering, when requesting a settlement from an insurance company?

Many insurance companies take each injury and assess it based on individual merit.  Some insurance companies use calculating software programs to determine payout amounts.  Other insurance companies base the amount they will pay generally on how much they have paid on past similar injuries and circumstances. If a case can not be settled with an insurance company it will then be up to a jury to determine the value of an individual’s “Pain and Suffering” through testimony and medical records.

The Law Offices of Stuart M. Kerner, P.C. has been handling personal injury matters for more than 15 years. If you’re looking for a personal injury lawyer in the Bronx and Washington Heights, or an accident attorney in Yonkers, give us a call toll-free at 866-293-1616 and we will gladly assist you.

Visit our awards and settlements page to see a  list of some settlements and verdicts obtained by the attorneys at the Law Offices of Stuart M. Kerner, P.C. personal injury lawyers and its trial counsels.

You may enjoy reading this other article about Car Accident: (published just before this one): What Are “Economic Damages” vs. “Non-Economic Damages”?.

You may enjoy reading this other article about Car Accident: (published just after this one): Accident Lawyers in the Bronx Explain How Back Injuries are Handled in Personal Injury Cases....


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“I am very happy how Mr. Kerner worked on my case. He always called me and kept me up to date. After another attorney dropped my case, Mr. Kerner took me on as a client and was able to get me a good settlement.”

– Testimonial of “Raymond P”

“Thank you to Mr. Stuart for his services. When no other lawyer wanted to take my case he did. He was very professional and I am very happy with the results he got me. I also want to thank him for treating me like family and not just a client.”

– Testimonial of “Julio P.”

“Stuart Kerner has been my lawyer since 1994. I have had several accident cases with him and he has always done well for me. I think of him like a friend and not just my attorney. I have referred many people to Stu and they all have been very satisfied.”

– Testimonial of “Ken D.”

“I am very happy with my attorney, Mr. Kerner. He got me a very good settlement. I recommend him to everyone who has had an accident and needs a good attorney.”

– Testimonial of “Johanna N.”

“The Law offices of Stuart Kerner has treated me like family. They dedicated a lot of time to help me and were very successful in the outcome of my accident case. I highly recommend attorney Stu Kerner to all clients.”

– Testimonial of “Jose D.”

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  • Bronx Country bar Association
  • Lawyers of Distinction

The information provided is meant as a general source of information only and should not be substituted for sound legal advice. We are not be liable for any errors or delays in the content or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.
(*) Prior results do not guarantee a future similar outcome.