Car accidents are among the leading causes of serious injuries. The Virginia Highway Safety Office (VHSO) reports that 65,708 people were hurt in crashes in the Commonwealth in 2019 alone. After a car accident, you may need money to cover medical bills and lost wages. In addition, you are entitled to recover monetary compensation for the pain and suffering that you endured as a result of the collision.
This raises an important question: How much money can I recover for pain and suffering after a car crash? The answer depends on many different factors, including the severity of your injuries and the total adverse impact that the crash had on your life. Here, our Fairfax auto accident lawyers explain how pain and suffering damages are determined in Virginia.
You Have a Right to Recover Compensation for Non-Economic Damages
In Virginia, car accident victims have the legal right to recover compensation for the full extent of their damages from the at-fault party. Beyond economic losses (medical bills, lost wages, diminished earning potential), injured victims can also seek recovery for non-economic damages, including their pain and suffering.
As stated in the Virginia Model Jury Instructions, an injured victim is entitled to financial compensation for “any physical pain [and mental anguish] he suffered in the past [and any that he may be reasonably expected to suffer in the future].” The challenge, of course, is determining how much pain and suffering compensation is appropriate in any given case.
No Concrete Formula for Pain and Suffering Damages
This is no fixed standard for calculating pain and suffering in Virginia. Judges and juries must consider the totality of the circumstances. However, insurance companies will try to argue for a low amount to be awarded for pain and suffering.
All Virginia Motor Vehicle Accidents Require a Comprehensive Investigation
Before you can consider pain and suffering damages, you must establish the defendant’s liability for the crash. To maximize your financial recovery after a car accident, it is imperative that you secure all of the evidence and information needed to prove liability. Virginia is one of the only contributory negligence jurisdictions in the entire country. Contributory negligence bars victims from recovering compensation—including for pain and suffering—if they are found at-fault for even a small percentage of the crash. You can protect your rights by retaining an attorney who knows how to prove liability and hold reckless or careless drivers accountable for causing an accident.
Contact Our Fairfax Car Accident Injury Attorneys for Immediate Help
At Whitestone Young, PC, our Virginia auto accident lawyers are experienced, trial-tested advocates for our clients. We fight to ensure that injured victims receive full and fair compensation for pain and suffering damages. If you were hurt in a traffic collision, we are more than prepared to help. Contact our firm now for a no cost, no obligation review of your personal injury claim. With a law office in Fairfax, we represent car accident victims throughout Northern Virginia, including in Annandale, Tysons, Leesburg, Ashburn, Warrenton, and The Plains.