Is It Worth Suing for Emotional Distress?
Posted on April 4th, 2021 by Zane Cagle
If you’ve read anything about personal injury cases, you may have heard at some point that injury victims can sue for damages, medical expenses, lost wages, and emotional distress.
That last item, emotional distress, might strike you as strange. After all, how can a person sue a liable party for emotional damages? Distress can’t be documented in the same way that an x-ray can. How can you prove you have emotional distress? Even further, how can your personal injury lawyer put a dollar amount on it and then argue for it?
Considering the above information, you might be wondering after an accident, “Is it worth suing for emotional distress?” If the only damage you have suffered is “emotional stress” without medical treatment, then that will be a very difficult claim to make and prove.
At The Cagle Law Firm, we say the answer is, “Yes, emotional distress is one of the factors we consider if you are physically injured.” If you were involved in an accident caused by someone else, then the weeks, months, years of going through medical treatment may qualify for emotional distress. We can help you collect the compensation you need.
Defining Emotional Distress
Before we discuss how victims can go about suing for emotional distress, let’s define what it is in the context of a personal injury.
Emotional distress, or mental anguish, is a form of psychological suffering that accident victims can experience alongside their physical injuries. Severe injuries often cause emotional distress.
It makes sense if you think about it. Suppose you’re driving along on a normal, sunny day, and suddenly you become seriously injured in an accident caused by a careless motorist.
Severe injuries result in distress and have a real effect on your life. At The Cagle Law Firm, we consider the entirety of the injury including emotional distress. Just because these emotional wounds are invisible does not mean they don’t exist. We believe the liable party should compensate you for your damages. Likewise, we do advocate that if you are suffering mental anguish and debilitating anxiety due to a car crash, seeking medical assistance is critical. Treatment is important so that you recover. It also documents the medical process.
How Do We Sue for Emotional Distress?
The question then becomes, “How does a St. Louis serious injury lawyer sue for emotional damages?”
We do it by applying the laws put in place around civil lawsuits, which is what personal injury cases are. The courts let us file suit for emotional distress, but we require that physical injuries are also present in plaintiffs.
But no matter what kind of accident occurred–whether it was a drunk driving accident or anything else–we do need to show evidence that you are suffering or have suffered from emotional distress as a direct result of an injury due to someone else’s negligence.
The first step in showing a court that you are entitled to psychological injury compensation is for you to document it yourself through medical treatment.
Your attorney will obtain copies of medical records showing you sought professional treatment for anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, or another mental health condition after the injury. Medical bills and records are requested by your attorney as we put together an injury claim. Usually, your attorney will ask you to document your process of medical treatment in a journal for reflection and documentation.
Record your daily symptoms in a journal.
Keep electronic records of your chronically increased heart rate or sleep disturbances.
Our attorneys build your case and coordinate all aspects of the claim. We also demand compensation and negotiate at the appropriate time. Often, personal injury lawsuits settle before going to court if the defendant’s insurance carrier reaches a fair amount. We prepare every case for litigation so that we ensure the claim is done correctly.
However, at The Cagle Law Firm, we are prepared to go to court if necessary. We say it often, and we mean it: we will do everything to ensure you get fair compensation for what you have suffered. We’ll work out what kind of monetary value can be placed on your mental distress and then demand that.
So, is it worth suing for emotional distress? If you are physically injured, then it absolutely is, and The Cagle Law Firm wants to be here to help you do it so you can recover from your injury and move on.
Call us toll-free at (1-800) 685-3302 or locally at (314) 276-1681.