When a person is involved in a personal injury claim often the focus is on property damage or the physical injury the person sustained. However, it must be noted that the are other injuries that are not physical that still need to be recovered by the plaintiff. This article will discuss seeking damages in a personal injury case for stress and anxiety.
Generally, it must be noted that when a person is injured or ill, they suffer stress. However, this does not necessarily mean that every injury suffered by an individual allows for the compensation of stress and anxiety. It is only when stress, anxiety and mental anguish have tangible results can they be compensable. To determine whether stress can be compensated in your personal injury case it largely depends on the type of injury that you have suffered and a specific medical diagnosis in this regard. If you are diagnosed with stress it falls under non-economic damages in the category of pain and suffering.
The term [Damages | Wex | US Law | LII / Legal Information Institute (cornell.edu)] damages refer to “the sum of money the law imposes for a breach of some duty or violation of some right”. Anxiety and stress fall under pain and suffering damages, and these are non-economic in nature meaning they do not easily have a dollar figure attributed to them. When speaking on stress it is an umbrella term generalizing them; they fall of pain and suffering damages. While it falls under non-economic damages, a jury can put a dollar amount on your pain and suffering. Consider speaking to attorneys in Wasilla, AK for specific information regarding your case on stress and anxiety as a form of pain and suffering damages.
Some states put a cap on non-economic damages, meaning that they have a law in place that sets a limit on the amount a plaintiff can recover for pain and suffering. For example, non-economic damages that can be recovered in a medical malpractice case are often capped in some states, however, when it comes to car accident cases there may be no limits in place. As a result, your ability to be compensated for anxiety or stress depends upon the circumstances surrounding your case; that is, a medical malpractice case or a car accident case.
It must be noted that stress can be a diagnosed illness or injury. One clear example of such stress is post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As a result, it is not uncommon for persons to be medically diagnosed with PTSD after suffering injuries. Common psychological symptoms of PTSD include depression, insomnia and anxiety, resulting in a PTSD diagnosis. If you are suffering any of the above symptoms after being involved in an accident or injury you must seek the necessary medical treatment in order to receive a formal diagnosis of your condition.
PTSD may seem like an extreme form of stress, however, a victim of an injury or accident may suffer other forms of stress that may be compensated in their personal injury claim. Stress can result in some of the following medical conditions:
- Skin rashes
- Acid reflux
By your physician simply documenting your symptoms this can be used as evidence of stress in your case.