Quality of Life
You incur considerable damages when you sustain injuries because of an accident or other negligent acts. You incur financial losses, which are referred to as economic damages. You also experience non-economic damages or “pain and suffering” damages.
Diminished quality of life is a type of non-economic damages. They generally apply when a person sustains an impairment or disabling condition that affects their activities, enjoyment of life, and other aspects of daily living.
What Is Your Quality of Life?
It can be difficult to define the quality of life because the term “quality of life” can mean different things to different people. For example, the World Health Organization (WHO) stays that your quality of life is your perception of your position in life relative to your concerns, expectations, standards, goals, value systems, and culture.
However, other people might define quality of life in terms of their health. A health-based quality of life definition might include whether you can do the activities you desire and whether your health is “good” according to your healthy lifestyle standard. It includes both your mental and physical health.
Accident Injuries That Can Affect Your Quality of Life
An injury can prevent you from caring for your personal needs and your family. It can prevent you from working or performing activities you enjoy.
Catastrophic injuries and impairments can decrease your quality of life. You might be able to improve your quality of life with medical treatments and medical devices, but your quality of life is lower than before you sustained the injury. For individuals with a high quality of life, an injury could substantially impact their overall enjoyment of life.
Injuries that can impact the quality of life include, but are not limited to:
- Losing a limb and amputations
- Traumatic brain injuries that result in physical, cognitive, and emotional impairments
- Childhood injuries that result in developmental delays
- Losing your vision or hearing
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- Scarring and significant disfigurement
- Injuries to internal organs
- Loss of bodily functions
- Severe burns
Injuries can have lifelong impacts on the person and their family members. The injured person may require substantial personal care. In addition, some injuries could impact intimate relationships with partners and personal relationships with friends.
Defining How Injuries Decrease Quality of Life
Every situation is different, and each person is unique. Therefore, the impact of an injury on a person’s life might be different from how that injury could impact another person’s life.
Examples of ways that injuries can impact your quality of life include:
- You cannot perform activities of daily living, such as eating, bathing, dressing, etc.
- Unable to work or continue with your chosen career
- Cannot take care of your children or family
- Inability to engage in intimate relations
- Loss of society, affection, and companionship with family and friends
- You cannot conceive a child
- Anxiety and embarrassment about scarring and disfigurement
- Ongoing mental and emotional suffering, including chronic depression, anxiety attacks, and PTSD
- You cannot participate in recreational, sporting, and social activities
- Ongoing chronic physical pain and suffering
You could experience other situations or issues that negatively affect your quality of life. For example, you might require ongoing health care or treatments, which could be painful or inconvenient.
Factors to Consider When Calculating the Value of Your Claim
Many factors impact the value of non-economic damages. Some factors that could impact how much your quality of life claim is worth include:
- Your age and overall health before and after the injury
- The type and severity of your injuries
- Your attempts to mitigate damages by taking steps to improve the quality of your life after an accident
- Testimony from family, friends, mental health providers, and physicians regarding your injuries and how those injuries impact daily life
- Your doctor’s evaluation of your condition and prognosis
- The activities you cannot perform after the injury
- Your appearance before and after the accident
- Statement from medical experts, occupational therapists, physical therapists, and other expert witnesses
- Education, skills, and work experience
- Your personality and social standing
The insurance company will try to downplay the impact of injuries on your quality of life. Careful and detailed documentation of the changes in your daily routines, activities, and lifestyle is crucial for proving your injuries’ impact on your quality of life.
Your lawyer helps you gather evidence to prove your claim. However, you may be the best source of information. Keep a journal detailing the changes in your quality of life after the accident. Include as much information as possible.
Call for a Free Consultation With a Personal Injury Lawyer
A personal injury or accident can significantly affect your quality of life. We help you seek compensation for the damages caused by a negligent party. Contact our law office or call (877) 255-3652 to schedule a free case evaluation with an experienced Gainesville personal injury attorney at Allen Law Firm, P.A.