Can I sue for mental suffering after a car accident in Ohio?

Sponsored Answer
Daniel A. Romaine - Personal Injury - General - Super Lawyers

Answered by: Daniel A. Romaine

Located in Euclid, OHNager, Romaine & Schneiberg Co., L.P.A.

Euclid, OH
Phone: 800-743-2797
Fax: 216-289-4743

View Profile

The short answer to your question is yes, you can sue for emotional distress in a personal injury lawsuit or file for it in an insurance claim. Emotional distress is considered a “noneconomic loss,” which simply means that such losses are harder to quantify than “economic losses,” such as medical bills or lost wages from injuries suffered in a car accident.

One of the keys to successfully recovering damages for mental suffering is working with a personal injury lawyer to properly document your distress. If you are experiencing physical symptoms related to your mental suffering (concentration problems, weight loss, hair loss, trembling or tics, for example), make sure you have your physician place that information in the medical record — and ensure the doctor notes that the symptoms stem from distress after your accident. If you seek counseling to deal with anxiety, depression, PTSD or other emotional after-effects of your car wreck, continue to go to sessions for as long as your therapist advises to provide evidence that it was a necessary part of your recovery.

If the mental suffering from your accident has caused you to be unable to work, or has deeply impacted your family relationships, those things should also be documented through proper channels. Insurance companies will rarely consider self-reports of emotional suffering as sufficient. However, keeping a daily diary of your feelings and mental state after the accident can be useful when you communicate to your lawyer and your medical treatment team about how long you have been suffering and how your emotional distress has limited your life.

If you were injured in a car accident, and you are now experiencing mental suffering due to what you saw or heard or felt during the accident, two other types of torts (legal claims) separate from your personal injury suit may become available to you: negligent infliction of emotional distress and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Although less common than a simple claim of mental suffering in a personal injury lawsuit, in a case where road rage or aggressive driving caused a catastrophic accident, the court may find that the at-fault driver acted recklessly or with gross negligence.

The emotional pain caused by a car accident is just as real as the physical and property damage that is inflicted. An experienced personal injury attorney can help you identify the types of mental suffering you have experienced. They will be familiar with the calculation methods the insurance companies use and can place the monetary value of the suffering in a range that will be considered useful in settlement negotiations or will be accepted as reasonable if your case moves to a civil trial.

Disclaimer: The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.

Other Answers By Daniel A. Romaine

Photo of Daniel A. Romaine

What can I do if I think my Ohio doctor should have recommended a C-section during birth?

Complications can happen during any childbirth whether natural or via Cesarean section (C-section). Physicians in the past have provided C-sections …

Sponsored answer by Daniel A. Romaine

Photo of Daniel A. Romaine

Can my employer fire me after I am injured at work in Ohio?

Ohio, like many other states, is an “at-will” employment state, meaning that your employer can fire you (or you can quit) without warning …

Sponsored answer by Daniel A. Romaine

Other Answers About Personal Injury - Plaintiff

Photo of Matthew N. Posgay

What kinds of compensation can injury victims get in Florida?

After an accident in Florida, a victim and his or her family can seek several types of compensation to make up for pain and suffering, lost wages and …

Sponsored answer by Matthew N. Posgay

Photo of Russell D. Nicolet

How Can I Find The Best Personal Injury Lawyer In Wisconsin?

The unthinkable has happened: you or a loved one has been seriously injured. You’re thankful to be alive but now face a pile of medical bills, …

Sponsored answer by Russell D. Nicolet

Photo of N. Jeffrey Blankenship

What Types Of Compensation Can I Recover For My Auto Accident In Kentucky?

Troubles escalate if you are seriously hurt or someone dies in an auto accident. They happen suddenly, with little or no warning. After the …

Sponsored answer by N. Jeffrey Blankenship

Call Me

To: Daniel A. Romaine

Super Lawyers: Potential Client Inquiry

Disclaimer »
Privacy Policy »
*Required fields
Page Generated: 0.63631105422974 sec