Week Four: Non-Pecuniary

Compensation for a plaintiff in a personal injury claim must fall under “heads of damage”:

  1. Non-Pecuniary Damages (i.e. “pain and suffering”)
  2. Past Income Loss (i.e. income lost up to the date of trial/settlement)
  3. Future Loss of Earning Capacity (i.e. income to be lost after the trial/settlement)
  4. Special Damages (i.e. out of pocket expenses for treatments, medications, etc.)
  5. Cost of Future Care (i.e. cost of treatments after trial/settlement)
  6. Lost Housekeeping Capacity
  7. “In Trust” Claim (the cost of services provided by loved ones)

Today we will look at the theoretical justification for non-pecuniary damages and the valuation of these damages in various case examples, as well as non-compensatory damages, such as punitive damages and aggravated damages.

Non-Pecuniary Damages: Pain, suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of amenities – quantifying the unquantifiable.

Special cases:

  • Elderly individuals
  • Athletes
  • Previously disabled plaintiffs
  • “Rough upper limit” or “cap” for non-pecuniary damages: catastrophic injuries
  • The “Minor Injury” Cap
  • Pain and suffering compensation under the new ‘No Fault’ regime
  • Sexual abuse

Aggravated and punitive damages

Download Lecture Notes

We enclose the following information for students (current and prospective) regarding the Personal Injury Law course: