Obtaining Compensation for Emotional Distress in California
After an accident, some injuries are obvious. You may have a broken arm or require surgery to fix a slipped disc. However, in other cases, the injuries are less apparent. You may have crippling anxiety or severe depression. You may be unable to leave the house or be unable to sleep. Emotional suffering is a painful reality that many accident victims do not talk about. What few people realize is that you can receive compensation for your physical and mental anguish.
At Westlake Injury Law, we help people obtain the largest recovery possible after an accident caused by another person’s wrongdoing. We work tirelessly to get our clients compensation for all of their injuries, including their mental pain and suffering. If you were involved in an accident and now suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder or another condition, contact our office for a free consultation. Call (805) 338-6880 to speak directly with a licensed attorney.
What Is Mental Anguish?
When a person suffers an unexpected injury, in addition to physical pain, they may experience emotional distress. Mental anguish can be debilitating. It can make it difficult to continue working or even caring for your children.
California civil jury instructions include the following examples of compensable emotional distress:
- Fright and horror
- Anxiety, worry, or shock
- Humiliation and shame
When another person’s negligence causes you mental anguish, you might be entitled to compensation. It can be challenging to prove your emotional suffering without the help of an attorney, which is why you should always consult with a lawyer before filing a claim based on personal injury.
Can I Obtain Damages for Mental Anguish?
In California, injury victims are able to obtain damages for both economic and non-economic losses. Economic losses include those that have actual costs, like your medical bills and lost wages. Mental anguish falls under pain and suffering, which is considered a part of non-economic damages.
Non-economic damages include:
- Past and future physical pain
- Past and future mental suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Physical impairment
- Emotional distress
A person who has sustained and can prove any of these losses due to another person’s wrongful conduct may be entitled to monetary compensation. The amount that you will receive for non-economic damages can be difficult to determine and should be reviewed by an attorney.
Do I Need an Attorney?
Early settlement offers rarely have compensation for mental anguish and other forms of pain and suffering. Insurance adjusters will often try to downplay emotional suffering, providing little to no money for you to receive the counseling that you need to fully recover. An attorney can help prove your condition and help ensure that you receive the damages that you deserve.
Hiring an Experienced Attorney
If you are suffering from emotional distress or mental anguish after an accident, contact our office for a free case evaluation. Call (805) 338-6880 to discuss your case with a knowledgeable member of our legal team. We can help you understand your rights and navigate the legal process to ensure you receive the results you deserve.