While the majority of personal injury claims are for physical injuries, it is also possible to claim compensation for psychological trauma, damage and emotional distress. Psychological injuries are often caused by sudden traumatic or stressful events outside the realm of ordinary experiences, such as a road traffic accident, accident at work or clinical negligence. Emotional and psychological trauma can be a very debilitating situation and can really have an effect on your day to day life.
These injuries, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression and anxiety disorder, can have life-changing effects that are sometimes more debilitating than a physical condition. Here at Atha & Co, our specialist personal injury solicitors understand how distressing psychological damage can be, so we are here to assist you in every part of your compensation claim.
Can I Claim For Emotional Distress?
A psychological personal injury claim follows the same process as a physical injury claim. If you believe that you have been a victim of pain or suffering that has been caused as a result of an accident then you may have a claim.
Psychological trauma claims usually accompany or form part of claims for physical injury, but they can also exist on their own, provided that they are caused by a traumatic incident or accident. For a psychological or emotional trauma claim to be valid, the symptoms of the condition must persist for several weeks following the traumatic incident that caused it and have a significant impact on aspects of daily living.
Symptoms of Psychological/Emotional Injuries
- Trouble sleeping
- Alcohol or drug misuse
- Struggling to concentrate and get through the day
There are two types of psychological trauma victims: primary victims and secondary victims.
Primary victims are people who are directly involved in an incident and have suffered psychological trauma as a result of someone’s negligent actions. Even if you weren’t physically injured, if there was a threat of serious injury which has caused you to suffer psychologically, you may have the right to claim and receive the help you need.
Secondary victims are individuals who suffer a psychological reaction to witnessing first-hand a serious accident.
You can read more about some of the symptoms of psychological trauma here.