The valuation of damages and the subjective elements to be considered…

Nov 2023
Soraya Ramos-Vázquez

On September 5, 2023, The Supreme Court of Puerto Rico issued an Opinion in Sucesión Mena Pamias y otros v. Jiménez Meléndez y otros, 2023 TSPR 108 on the scope of what was resolved in Santiago Montañez v. Fressenius Medical, 195 D.P.R. 476 (2016) on the valuation of damages in Tort Liability cases. In this opinion, the Supreme Court reiterated that, when assessing damages, the sentencing forums, in addition to taking into consideration the compensation awarded in previous cases and/or similar precedents, must also take into account the particularities of the case before them, bearing in mind, of course, that not all cases are the same, and that human experience with similar events can vary significantly.

In assessing damages Courts should be wary on basing their findings on strict mathematical equations. Although similar cases are of great help, Courts should always consider the particular facts of the case before them when determining damages. . In conclusion, at the time of valuing damages, we should not mechanically apply the mathematical equations made in Santiago Montanez v. Fressenius, supra.