How much to ask for pain and suffering in a settlement?

My husband was injured in a hotel room. A piece of the bed frame cut his leg open requiring stitches. We are preparing the medical bills to send copies to them, plus the pictures of his leg, bed frame and the incident report they filled out at the time.

Asked on May 11, 2016 under Personal Injury, Missouri

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Compensation for pain and suffering is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  There isn't any mathematical formula for determining compensation for pain and suffering.  It just depends on the facts of each case. 
If your husband has fully recovered and does not have any residual complaints, I would ask for quadruple the medical bills as compensation for pain and suffering, but NOT EXPECTING TO GET THAT.  This would be a starting point in negotiations with the hotel's insurance company.  The insurance company will respond with a much lower offer and you can continue negotiating to try to get them to increase their offer.
If your husband has residual complaints, pain, scars, etc., that would be worth more compensation for pain and suffering than someone who had fully recovered.
The settlement should include compensation for the medical bills, compensation for pain and suffering and if applicable, compensation for wage loss.
Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.
If your husband is dissatisfied with settlement offers from the hotel's insurance company, he can reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the hotel.
If the case is settled with the hotel's insurance company, NO lawsuit is filed.
If the case is NOT settled with the hotel's insurance company, your husband's lawsuit for negligence against the hotel must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or your husband will lose his rights in the matter forever.


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