Receiving Non-Economic Damages: What Are They


Plaintiffs who are successful in a New York medical malpractice lawsuit will generally be awarded compensation for their non-financial losses.  When medical malpractice damages are non-economic, they are often more difficult to calculate than economic damages.  This means that the amount awarded will vary significantly between cases.  Types of non-economic damages that may be awarded in successful medical malpractice cases include:

Pain and Suffering

This type of damages award the plaintiff compensation for both past and future physical pain that is caused by their injuries.  In order to calculate this medical malpractice non-economic damage, the jury will need to consider the nature and severity of the injury, whether continued pain is certain, and the duration the patient is expected to be in pain.

Mental Anguish

Medical malpractice can also cause mental anguish for which a plaintiff can be compensated.  Victims may be able to recover compensation for their anxiety, humiliation, fear, nervousness, grief, shock, and other forms of emotional distress.

Loss of Life’s Enjoyment and Loss of Consortium

Patients who have been the victims of medical malpractice can also suffer from a decrease in the ability to enjoy the “daily pleasures of life.”  In addition, the plaintiff’s uninjured spouse may be able to recover for the loss of marital benefits after an instance of medical malpractice.  Marital benefits that may have been lost include companionship, sexual relations, affection, comfort, and assistance.  When calculating the loss of consortium damages award, the life expectancies of the couple, the stability of their marriage, and the extent marital benefits have been lost are taken into account.

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