multiplier

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multiplier

1 a number applied by multiplication to a MULTIPLICAND to produce a figure for damages in cases of future loss, which would produce an appropriate but notional annuity equivalent to the loss but which will itself be exhausted at the time of the notional death.

In calculating damages for future loss of earnings, courts are faced with the difficulty that the person is not earning the money and is not going to earn the money, so they have to make a hypothetical calculation. It would be to overcompensate to subtract the plaintiff ‘s age from the retirement age and multiply the annual wage loss (as adjusted by various factors to become a multiplicand) by that figure. That would provide a capital sum immediately and would not reflect the fact that the last pound would not have been earned for many years. Secondly, there are the vicissitudes of life. Not everyone lives to retirement age. Accordingly, multipliers are now found from appropriate use of the actuarial Ogden tables and the government lays down a standard notional rate of return upon which to base the calculation.

2 an old word for an alchemist, who pretended to increase the quantity of gold or silver.