If you’ve suffered an injury due to the careless or reckless conduct of another party, you may be eligible for financial compensation. In the state of Nevada, victims of negligence are entitled to seek financial compensation for direct financial losses and non-monetary damages, including pain and suffering.
As discussed below, pain and suffering refers to both physical and mental pain. One form of mental pain occurs when an injury diminishes a person’s quality of life. In this article, we discuss diminished quality of life in Nevada personal injury lawsuits.
What are Pain and Suffering Damages?
Pain and suffering damages are awarded in a personal injury lawsuit for the physical pain and emotional distress that a person experiences after an accident. These damages consider the mental and psychological effects that typically accompany physical injuries. Diminished quality of life is one type of emotional pain that may be compensable in a personal injury lawsuit.
Calculating Pain and Suffering
Since there is no obvious calculable amount that corresponds to pain and suffering, these types of damages are considered non-economic damages. In Nevada, no definite method of calculating pain and suffering damages is prescribed by law. Instead, Nevada law requires courts to exercise calm and reasonable judgment when calculating pain and suffering damages.
Since such damages are difficult to calculate, juries and judges weigh several factors, including:
- Whether the injured party’s daily routine must be limited or altered
- Whether the injury impacts the injured party’s relationships at home or work
- The effect the injury had on the injured party’s sleep or lifestyle
Quality of life is one important non-economic damage.
What is Quality of Life?
In the realm of personal injury, quality of life refers to an individual’s general health, well-being, and ability to enjoy normal activities of life. These include daily activities like caring for oneself, caring for dependents, earning a living, and participating in recreational activities. Quality of life encompasses many different factors that paint an overall picture of an individual’s lifestyle.
In a personal injury lawsuit, diminished quality of life refers to the reduction in a person’s ability to enjoy their life in the same manner as they did prior to an injury in an accident. In other words, a diminished quality of life refers to a lessening of a person’s ability to perform certain tasks, participate in certain activities, or earn income.
Compensation for Diminished Quality of Life
In Nevada, an injured person may seek financial compensation for non-economic losses, including diminished quality of life.
To obtain damages for diminished quality of life, an injured party must prove the following:
- The defendant is legally liable for the plaintiff’s injuries; and
- The plaintiff suffered a diminished quality of life due to the defendant’s negligence.
Failure to prove both elements will prevent a plaintiff from making a full recovery.
Factors That Can Reduce Compensation for a Diminished Quality of Life Claim
Although a diminished quality of life claim is based on the injuries suffered by a plaintiff, it is possible that a plaintiff’s compensation for damages can be lowered due to their actions or inactions. Specifically, a plaintiff’s compensation may be reduced based on either of the following:
Contributory Negligence: Nevada employs the doctrine of comparative negligence. Under this negligence system, liability is spread among all parties according to their degree of fault. However, if the plaintiff’s negligence is found to be greater than the defendant’s negligence, then the plaintiff may not recover any damages.
Assumption of Risk: Assumption of risk is an affirmative defense to negligence in Nevada. This means that a defendant may assert this defense in response to a claim of negligence in a personal injury case. When a defendant asserts this defense, they claim that the plaintiff assumed the risk of injury when undertaking the actions that resulted in the plaintiff’s injury. However, to succeed with this defense, the defendant must present evidence that the plaintiff did indeed assume such a risk.
Contact a Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorney
If you’ve been injured in an accident in Las Vegas, Nevada, you need an experienced personal injury attorney on your side. At Battle Born Injury Lawyers, our knowledgeable attorneys have been advocating for injury victims throughout Las Vegas since 2010. In the process, we’ve recovered in excess of $100 million for our clients, and we’d like to put our experience to work for you. Please contact us or give us a call at (702) 570-9000 to schedule an initial consultation with one of our talented Las Vegas lawyers at Battle Born Injury Lawyers.