Thousands of victims have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) each year. Most emotional and psychological trauma is due to someone else’s negligence. For instance, a texting driver may crash into a responsible driver, causing them emotional and physical trauma.
Legal Remedies for PTSD
PTSD is a psychiatric disorder impacting the victims or survivors of a traumatic experience. Numerous instances lead to PTSD. Soldiers returning from combat, victims of car accidents, and sexual assault victims may experience PTSD. The law provides avenues for civil remedies for individuals willing to file a lawsuit against the responsible parties. File a claim against the at-fault party to recover non-economic and economic damages with the help of a seasoned PTSD lawyer. Economic losses require emotional therapy and psychiatric care, and compensation caters to the lost income for victims who can’t continue working. Emotional losses may impact your life indirectly, and victims can secure compensation for incalculable scars due to someone else’s negligence. These claims fall into non-economic damages, and they can increase the overall amount of your prospective settlement.
How PTSD Is Proven in Court
Expert and fact witnesses are the two kinds of witnesses presented during a trial. An expert witness testifies about the evidence presented and is related to experience and knowledge in the legal field. A fact witness assesses the observations specifically regarding what happened in the case. The average jury can’t judge whether the plaintiffs have PTSD and rely on expert testimony. The law requires the expert to provide evidence explaining to the jury why they believe their clients have PTSD. The plaintiff’s therapist can act as an expert and a fact witness if they observe the symptoms of PTSD or if they treat the plaintiff for a condition based on their descriptions of their behaviors and thoughts.
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Calculations for PTSD Damages
There are multiple factors considered when calculating damages for PTSD. Some of the factors include the following:
- Punitive damages: These damages are included in a personal injury award to punish the defendant for a malicious and egregious act that leads to an injury.
- Lost wages: Victims may claim damages for decreased earning capacity if a healthcare provider establishes that PTSD has decreased their ability to work.
- The severity of injuries: Victims may not sustain severe physical injuries due to trauma, but PTSD may lead to psychological and physical issues that need inpatient care and ongoing treatment.
- Assets and insurance: The compensation amount for a lawsuit due to pain and suffering is influenced by the defendant’s insurance policy and whether they have assets in the award amount.
Is Filing for PTSD Necessary?
The person with PTSD should determine the right course of action. There is a high probability of a jury verdict or a large settlement in personal injury cases involving PTSD. The jury requires the plaintiff’s emotional and medical history to evaluate the worth of the case. Plaintiffs with PTSD may have a difficult time testifying, but the assistance of a seasoned attorney plays a significant role in determining the trajectory of the case. Physical injuries following an accident are easily noticeable, but PTSD may take a while to diagnose. Your attorney must also prove that the condition is a direct outcome of the accident. Any claim that your attorney forwards may get refuted by the defense attorney, but that shouldn’t deter victims from pursuing a PTSD lawsuit. Discuss your situation with your mental health provider and personal injury lawyer before deciding on the next action.
Victims suffering from emotional distress and PTSD due to another person’s negligence have grounds to file a lawsuit for emotional distress. Suing for emotional distress is more complicated than suing for physical injuries. Work with a reputable personal injury lawyer with adequate knowledge of the personal injury law to secure fair compensation.