Legal doctrine and jurisprudence in Spain assume that financial compensation for damage must be all-inclusive and, therefore, compensation should not only include material damages but also non-material damages.
Therefore, based on the general principle of the Spanish system, “restitutio in integrum”, there is consensus both on the part of the doctrine and jurisprudence when defining what non-material damages are.
Both agree that non-material damage is all private damage that cannot be understood as material damage.
The question is how is non-material damage to be understood? According to Spanish doctrine and jurisprudence, non-material damage, may consist of anguish, suffering, affliction (both physical and spiritual), humiliation, and, in general, the pain suffered by the victim.
An important issue is how to calculate financial compensation for the non-material damage suffered.
There is no table or scale to calculate amounts of non-material damage. Moreover, given that non-material damage is abstract, it is even more difficult to quantify the compensation to repair it.
Consequently, it is a complex issue for lawyers to calculate compensation and for judges to rule fairly on the matter.
Compensation should be assessed by the judge on a case by case basis, according to the premises established by doctrinal and jurisprudential law.
By and large, the calculation should take into account the seriousness of the facts, the intentionality and their degree of dissemination to third parties.
Likewise, legal doctrine and jurisprudence are in favour of applying the principle of prudence to the calculation which specifies that compensation established for non-material damage should not be exorbitant, unfair, disproportionate or irrational.
Therefore, each compensation based on compensation for having suffered non-material damage will be analyzed individually by the judge, motivating his decision based on the principles and criteria of compensation and prudence warned by the doctrine and jurisprudence itself.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.