Can I Sue For Psychological Injuries?

Posted on: 26 October 2021

When you think of a "personal injury case," you might think that this type of case only refers to an incident where the plaintiff suffered physical injuries. However, psychological injuries can also play a role and may be considered in addition to physical injuries. However, determining psychological damages can be difficult because these injuries are not always readily apparent. 

Liability and Psychological Damages

If another party has engaged in actions that could be expected to cause psychological harm, they might be considered liable for any damages that result. The types of injuries you might suffer from include flashbacks, panic attacks, depression, insomnia, and emotional detachment. 

There are various ways that you might suffer psychological harm. If you have suffered a traumatic experience, you might then suffer from PTSD. The incident might cause you to fall into a deep depression. You might also suffer a head injury that may impact your mental well-being. 

How to Prove Liability

You must prove that the defendant had a duty of care, that they breached the duty of care, and that you suffered damages as a result. You must prove that you suffered psychological harm as a result of the actions of the defendant. You may be able to prove this with the help of a mental health professional. 

However, the defendant will do everything they can to downplay your suffering and to argue that they were not responsible for your suffering. This is especially true if you have not suffered physical injuries, and if you are taking legal action against the defendant because they intentionally inflicted emotional distress on you.

The Infliction of Distress

A personal injury attorney can gather evidence to help prove that the actions taken by the defendant were outrageous. For example, if you were a passenger on a bus and the bus driver chose to drive the bus in a highly reckless manner that caused you to fear for your life, you may be able to argue that the bus driver should compensate you for your damages.

The type of damages you might suffer include the costs associated with psychiatric treatment, such as the cost of any psychiatric medications you must now take, and any pain and suffering you have experienced. You may be so distressed that you are unable to work and you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages and diminished future earnings. However, to prove all of this, you will need help from a local personal injury lawyer.