ASSESSMENT OF DAMAGES
The judgment in Radebe v. Hough1 considers whether the plaintiff's economic, social or racial status affects the assessment of damages for pain and suffering. The plaintiff claimed damages for assault, having been shot by the defendant. The bullet wound caused severe pain for some days after the assault. The pain and discomfort had diminished over time but would never disappear completely. The trial judge awarded the plaintiff ¢16, stating:
in awarding damages for pain and suffering one must take into consideration the standing of the person injured. For instance, in the case of a native, as is the plaintiff, who is earning the sum of ¢ per week, I should most certainly not award the same amount for pain and suffering as I would for the same pain and suffering of a person who had more culture and, for instance, I would award a larger sum for damages in the case of an injury to a European woman than I would do for a native male, and so too in the present case, if it had been a European of some standing I would have awarded greater damages than I now propose to do . . . . I have come to the conclusion that if I award him for pain and suffering an amount equivalent
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Publication information: Book title: Common Law in Southern Africa:Conflict of Laws and Torts Precedents. Contributors: Peter B. Kutner - Author. Publisher: Greenwood Press. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1990. Page number: 229.
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