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Can I sue a person for causing mental trauma?

Injuries can go far beyond physical harm, and sometimes, especially in the instance of a car accident, the longest-lasting and painful injuries caused by another person come in the form of emotional distress and mental trauma. It would seem obvious then, that if a person can sue a person for causing physical injury, then they can also sue a person for causing mental stress and trauma, too. The answer is yes, however securing damages for this can be very challenging in practice.

This blog will provide a brief overview into what questions you should ask yourself when considering filing a lawsuit for mental trauma caused by a car accident.

When did your injury take place?

Each state has different laws on how long a person can wait after the initial incident before filing a lawsuit for negligent or intentional infliction of emotional stress. Therefore, it is a good idea to check that you have not gone over this limit already.

Is there any physical evidence of your emotional stress?

It is often easier to prove before a court the extent of your emotional stress if you can show physical signs such as headaches, ulcers or other commonly recognized signs of stress. An official medical diagnosis can also help your case.

Is there a causal connection?

It is important to be able to prove that the incident led to emotional distress. In order to recover damages for negligent infliction of emotional distress, you must also have suffered from a physical injury. An experienced attorney can help you learn more about how to pursue such compensation.

Source: Findlaw, "Can You Sue Over Mental Stress, Trauma?," accessed Aug. 24, 2017

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