Can you sue for emotional distress after a car accident? It’s a question we get a lot. This article explains how to tell if you have a case.
Taking care of your physical injuries after you get hurt in an accident is a top priority. However, not all injuries are physical – some manifest as emotional distress, which can have debilitating effects on your day-to-day life.
Proving that a negligent party has inflicted emotional distress on you can be complicated, so it is crucial to know where to start.
What is emotional distress?
Emotional distress is a term used to describe a variety of mental health effects that result from a traumatic event, such as a car accident. While two people may experience these effects in different ways, some of the common signs of emotional distress include:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Mood disorder
If you experience any of these signs, you should consult a mental health professional. Documenting your treatment will not only help you recover more quickly so you can move on with your life – it may also help if you decide to file a lawsuit against the negligent party.
Can you sue for emotional distress after a car accident?
You can, but in most cases, you will not need to sue for emotional distress to recover damages. Many insurance companies choose to settle out of court to avoid a long, drawn-out process. To seek compensation for emotional distress, you will need to include it as part of the non-economic damages you are seeking. However, it is important that you are prepared to proceed to the courts as some cases may not be reconciled without a judge’s ruling.
Negligent Infliction of Damages
In Florida, you will need to establish that the other party’s negligence resulted in your emotional distress. The facts that you will have to prove include:
- That you experienced an emotional injury
- That the other party’s negligence contributed to the emotional injury
- And that you suffered a physical impairment as a result of the injury
Establishing the physical aspect of your injury is one of the most important parts of an emotional distress case. Without a physical injury, you will not qualify for emotional distress damages.
Establishing Your Case After a Car Accident
Establishing your case for emotional distress can be difficult – unlike a physical injury which is tangible and measurable – but with the right approach and evidence, you can get the compensation you need to recover. Through medical records, witness testimony, and your personal record keeping, you can show the court the impact that the accident had on your mental and emotional health.
Can you sue for emotional distress and win? Without an attorney who knows how to build a solid case, the chances are slim.
Are you suffering emotional distress from a car accident? Pacin Levine, P.A. is here to help you recover. Get in touch with us today to set up a free case review so we can examine your case together and devise a plan.