Following a car accident, your physical injuries may be the tip of the iceberg. Many people find themselves dealing with immense emotional distress in addition to the physical challenges they faced after their accidents. You may have PTSD, increased anxiety, depression, or general emotional distress related to the incident and its aftermath.

Can you recover compensation for emotional distress after a car accident–and if so, how can you maximize your odds of recovering it?

Can You Recover Compensation for Emotional Distress After a Car Accident?

In many cases, you can recover compensation for emotional distress related to car accident injuries. Working with a lawyer, however, can be critical. A lawyer can help you break down the types of emotional distress for which you can pursue compensation and how much compensation you may deserve.

In order to determine whether you may have grounds to recover compensation for emotional distress, your lawyer will take a look at several key features. First, your lawyer will want to know how intense the emotional distress is, and how long it has lasted. Your lawyer may also ask for any evidence of bodily harm, including insomnia, slowed healing, ulcers, headaches, or other signs that the emotional distress has caused a serious impact on your body.

How Can You Prove that Emotional Distress Stems from a Car Accident?

Work with a lawyer to establish your right to compensation for emotional distress after a car accident. Your lawyer may suggest that you take these key steps to help protect yourself and increase your odds of getting compensation for the suffering you have faced.

1. Seek attention from a medical professional.

If you suffered physical injuries in your car accident, you would need to establish them by working with a medical professional. A doctor can help diagnose and treat serious signs of emotional trauma after a car accident, including PTSD, anxiety, and depression. A therapist can also provide a clear treatment plan that may make it easier for you to cope with those difficulties. Furthermore, a therapist can offer insight into the underlying cause of your emotional distress. You may need your therapist to certify that the emotional distress comes from the car accident and not from another source, from traumatic events in your past to other challenges you may have faced.

If you have physical symptoms related to your emotional distress, you may also need to seek attention from a doctor who can help with those physical symptoms. A prescription or treatment plan for those symptoms can help establish your right to a personal injury claim.

2. Document the impact your emotional distress has had on your life after your car accident.

Show clear evidence of how your emotional distress has impacted your life. Have you had trouble riding in a car since the accident? Driving past the site of the accident? In some cases, trauma and emotional distress may also creep into other areas of your life, making it difficult for you to engage in normal activities or causing you to be shorter than usual with friends and loved ones. Treatment, including therapy, may also take up time you would rather spend on other things.

3. Contact a lawyer.

Trying to prove emotional distress on your own can prove very complicated and difficult to manage. A lawyer, however, can help you put together a more effective claim that will better establish your right to compensation, including clear evidence of when your emotional distress occurred and how it has impacted your life following your accident. Furthermore, a lawyer can help you better understand your right to compensation for emotional distress and how it may impact the rest of your claim.

Your lawyer, in addition to the other driver’s insurance company, may also want to take a look at your past medical records. If, for example, you have shown signs of emotional distress, including PTSD or anxiety, in the past, you may need to show that the car accident significantly impacted your anxiety levels and has caused you to suffer more serious impact.

What Compensation Can You Recover for Emotional Distress?

Knowing how much compensation you can recover for emotional distress can make it easier to determine when you want to accept a settlement offer and when you may want to continue to fight for the compensation you may deserve, as well as helping you make future financial plans. Talk to a lawyer about your specific case, including whether claims for serious physical injuries may impact your ability to seek compensation for the emotional distress you may have suffered during your car accident.

Generally speaking, you can claim compensation for:

  • Any medical expenses you faced due to emotional distress after a car accident. Medical expenses might include the cost of therapy, including hospitalization or inpatient treatment if needed, as well as the cost of any medications you needed to treat your illness.
  • The cost of any wages lost because your emotional distress after a car accident prevented you from working: for example, if you usually drive in the course of your usual job duties, and your accident prevented you from working.
  • The emotional distress you sustained, including overall pain and suffering.

Often, it can prove more difficult to calculate the pain and suffering that often goes along with substantial emotional distress after a car accident. However, a lawyer can work with you to ensure that all of your needs are taken into consideration and that you can ask for the support you deserve. Keep in mind that if you need to claim compensation for physical injuries, it can impact your ability to claim for emotional distress: you may have an easier time proving that your emotional distress stems from the car accident if you suffered serious physical injuries, but the limits of the insurance policy may determine how much compensation you can claim overall.

Contact a Car Accident Lawyer for Help with Your Claim

Learn more about brain injury signs after a car accident. Similarly, if you were a passenger during the accident, your claim process might differ, and getting the right legal advice is essential. Here is some information on passenger car accidents. In cases where multiple parties are involved, the claim can become complex, and having a skilled lawyer can make a significant difference.

Read more about claims involving multiple parties. Additionally, weather conditions can often play a role in car accidents, and understanding how this can affect your claim is important. Find out more about how weather can impact car accidents. Lastly, it is important to choose a law firm with a wide range of practices to ensure they can handle all aspects of your case. Learn about the practices at Alvendia Kelly & Demarest.

If you need to claim compensation for emotional distress after a car accident, an experienced car accident lawyer can help. Contact Alvendia Kelly & Demarest at 504-200-0000 to learn more about your right to compensation after a car accident.

In 2003, after being dissatisfied with the quality of legal care for victims of car accidents, Roderick ‘Rico’ Alvendia sought to establish a new firm focused on providing high-quality legal services to aid injured victims and their families. J. Bart Kelly, sharing Rico’s passion for upholding justice, joined the firm later that year, and established a partnership.

  • They helped me with every need possible. The back issues I had could have been much worse if they didn’t step in and help me. Bart, Megan, and all the people that work for this legal team are amazing. I would recommend them to anyone. Thank you all for helping me each step of the way. I can’t thank these people enough.

    - T. Gibson-Warren

  • I want to thank the whole team for all your help and persistence with my settlement. I truly appreciate.

    - A. Alfortish

  • Great experiences every time I need you guys. I always recommend your firm.

    - W. Young

  • Bart and his team were wonderful to work with. It was clear that their vision and determination to fight for our case, is why we were able to reach a settlement, where my previous attorney was not.

    - C. Perez

  • Bart Kelly and his legal team reevaluated my case after another attorney backed away from a legal challenge, I just want to say Thank You to mr kelly and his team for the hard work and dedication to my case to make it successful . Thank You

    - N. Gex

  • Attorney Kelly is an impeccable attorney. He has represented me extremely well. I was very, very, very pleased with the outcome of my settlement. He’s highly recommended … to give assistance to anyone. I thank him for his services and I’m super elated over the way he handled the case. He is a phenomenal lawyer.

    - S. Spears

  • I’ve learned the importance of having good coverage insurance, thanks to Mr. Kelly explaining everything to me. We do not hope or wait for accidents, but rest assured that I will call Mr. Kelly again if I need his services. Thank you.

    - Ann Zimmer

  • Being represented by Mr. Kelly and his legal team was a very awesome experience. They were very patient and they worked really hard in resolving my case. I would most definitely refer them to all my friends and associates. Thank you very much.

    - Nathaniel Bonney

  • I am very grateful for Mr. Bart’s assistance. He was very professional and fair. I never felt like a client with him. I always felt like a close friend. Also, I would like to thank everyone in the office for being friendly, kind, and for helping me.

    - Glac Mantuso

  • Just want to say thanks a lot because I received way more than I expected. You guys did a wonderful job of getting the max for myself and my family. Everyone I met or spoke to on the phone was really professional and nice. Once again, thanks a lot.

    - Jessica Quinn

  • J. Bart Kelly is the best attorney I have ever met. He is intelligent, caring, understanding, and knows how to protect his clients. I love his strong take-charge attitude to fight for what is right.

    - Teri Haas

  • My lawyer took the time to explain everything in a clear and concise manner. I’ve been treated fairly and with the utmost respect. I am very appreciative of all of the staff at AKD for their services.

    - James Barber

  • I am grateful for the way that my case was handled. Thanks.

    - Darryl Hill

  • Thanks to Bart and Meg. Fantastic group of people and team. Love you guys.

    - Claudine Hope

  • I was involved in a terrible accident and had a lot of serious injuries. I was so happy that Bart (and his team, including his nurse paralegal) was my attorney. The results were much more than expected as far as the settlement. Thanks.

    - Karen Bourgeois

  • I received exceptional service from the law office of Bart Kelly. He is a great attorney who cares about what you are going through, and I am very pleased with the outcome.

    - Melissa Sanchez

View all