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Non-Economic Damages

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Non Economic Damages

If you have suffered an injury that someone else is legally responsible for, you should demand damages from the responsible party. 

Nevada recognizes three types of damages: economic damages, non-economic damages, and punitive damages. Non-economic damages represent intangible losses that are difficult to quantify.

Types of Non-Economic Damages

Following is a list of the most common types of non-economic damages that Nevada courts award. It is not necessarily an exhaustive list.

Pain and Suffering

Pain and suffering is perhaps the most commonly awarded form of non-economic damages. Personal injuries can cause debilitating consequences physically, mentally, and emotionally. Each person’s pain and suffering is unique, and it 

Disfigurement

For example, let’s say you suffered burn injuries in a car accident. Even after medical treatment, you might have to deal with extensive facial scarring. Imagine the discrimination and social ostracism that such a state of affairs would cause. 

Loss of Enjoyment of Life

You might seek damages for loss of enjoyment of life if the consequences of your injury prevent you from engaging in activities that you once enjoyed. For example, if a truck accident deprived you of the ability to exercise, you might increase the amount of your claim on this basis. 

Anything that you derive enjoyment from, even playing chess or playing “fetch” with your dog, can justify a claim for loss of enjoyment of life.

Psychological Consequences of an Injury

You generally cannot collect non-economic damages for a purely psychological injury unless you are able to file a claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress. If you do suffer a physical injury, however, you can seek non-economic damages for certain psychological consequences of that injury that you cannot otherwise categorize.

Suppose, for example, that you suffer a serious dog bite injury. If you then develop an intense fear of dogs, you can seek non-economic damages for this. Depending on the circumstances, you might be able to collect for PTSD, depression, anxiety, and other psychological maladies.

Special Case: Loss of Consortium

Loss of consortium is a unique element of non-economic damages. You do not file a loss of consortium claim yourself. Instead, your spouse or your registered domestic partner must file this claim. The claim is that because of your injury, your spouse or registered domestic partner lost your moral support, companionship, and/or intimate relations (including sexual relations). 

Non-economic damages for this claim go to your spouse or registered domestic partner, not to you. 

Methods for Calculating the Value of Non-Economic Damages

Unlike economic damages, non-economic damages are inherently subjective. Precisely how much is your “pain and suffering” worth, for example? This is not a trivial question because non-economic damages awards can be substantial. Following are descriptions of two popular ways of calculating non-economic damages.

The “Per Diem” Method

“Per diem” simply means “per day.” How much is 24 hours of your pain and suffering or mental anguish worth? For instance, if you decide on $250, you would need to multiply $250 by the number of days that you suffered.

The Multiplier Method

Under the multiplier method, you start with the amount of your economic damages (some claimants start with the amount of their medical expenses). You then multiply this amount by a “multiplier,” which is typically a number between 1.5 and 5.

The value of the multiplier depends on several factors, including the severity of your injury, the duration of any disability, and the time it took you to recover from your injury. During settlement negotiations, it also depends on the degree of stubbornness of the defendant.

Proving Your Pain and Suffering Damages

Proving your entitlement to non-economic damages can be difficult. Some of the ways that claimants typically prove these damages include:

  • Keeping a “pain journal” where they record their pain and their daily struggles, starting as soon as possible after the accident;
  • Photographing the accident and your injuries;
  • Seeking immediate medical treatment and notifying the doctor immediately of any new symptoms; and
  • Photograph your recovery process.

Keep all of this evidence together in the same file, and be sure to create backups.

An Experienced Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help You Maximize Your Non-Economic Damages

Consider the fact that non-economic damages can make up well over 50% of the value of your claim. You might need a qualified Las Vegas personal injury lawyer to help you persuasively advocate for high non-economic damages. Without one, you could end up worth only a fraction of the true value of your claim.

Contact our law offices in Las Vegas, Nevada at (702) 222-9999 to schedule a free consultation today.

Areas We Serve

At De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers our personal injury attorneys serve the following localities: Angel Park, Anthem, Boulder City, Downtown Las Vegas, East Las Vegas, Gibson Springs, Green Valley, Henderson, Lake Las Vegas, MacDonald Ranch, McCullough Hills, Mission Hills, Paradise, Peccole Ranch, Queensridge, Reno, Seven Hills, Smoke Ranch, Spring Valley, Summerlin, The Lakes, The Strip, Whitney, and more.
We also represent accident victims in Oakland, CA.

About Our Firm

De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers, located in Las Vegas, NV, is a personal injury law firm established over 30 years ago.
We have 100+ years of combined experience securing hundreds of millions for injured people throughout Nevada. If you’ve been injured due to someone else’s negligence, contact us today to discuss your case.

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