Driggers vs Detroit Edison

“Hedonic Damages: Litigating the loss of enjoyment of life.”

American Law Institute-American Bar Association Round table discussion: Monetary/financial losses vs. Losses in the enjoyment of life. Stan details what losses are included in hedonic damages.


Smith: The average loss would be half of fifty percent. It’s fifty percent now, zero at the end of life expectancy. It averages out to be twenty-five, then you can simply take half of the assessed loss of fifty percent.

Interviewer: Ok, so with any of these charts, if the finder of fact determines that based on a person’s injuries that it should decrease over time, that they can adjust these charts accordingly.

Smith: Absolutely. These are really meant as a tool, an aid, and a guide.

Interviewer: How about the converse?

Smith: The converse is true too. Her fifty percent level may deteriorate.

Interviewer: How would that happen?

Smith: Let’s say that she continues to experience distress, finds it difficult to work, ultimately the emotional distress may be so severe that she requires, therapy, hospitalization. I can’t tell you that this will happen, but aggravation could occur.

Interviewer: Financial distress as a result of that?

Smith: Oh, yes.

Interviewer: Loss of home?

Smith: Exactly.

Interviewer: Loss of spouse, etc.?

Smith: Right. It would be for someone who is not emotionally able to cope with the circumstances.

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