Car Accidents

Is emotional distress the same as pain and suffering?

Understand the difference between emotional distress and pain and suffering—and how they are compensated for following a car accident.
R.T. Green

TGL Attorney

R.T. Green

Is emotional distress the same as pain and suffering

Is emotional distress the same as pain and suffering?

Emotional distress is a term that is related to and often used together with the term pain and suffering. Emotional distress refers to the psychological or emotional impact experienced as a result of an event or injury. It could include symptoms such as anxiety, depression, fear, humiliation, mental anguish, and other psychological issues. Emotional distress focuses on the mental anguish and suffering that an individual suffers as a result of the incident.

Pain and suffering primarily refers to the physical pain experienced by an individual as a direct result of an injury. This may include pain immediately following the incident or chronic pain that persists over time, physical disabilities or impairments, and the overall decrease in the individual’s quality of life due to the injury. Emotional distress can be a component of pain and suffering.

If you have sustained either of these as a result of an accident, you may be entitled to compensation from the at-fault party. Speaking with a car accident lawyer can help you determine if your case warrants legal action. For a free consultation with a car accident lawyer in Indianapolis, give us a call at Team Green Law.

How much is pain and suffering worth in a car accident?

The determination of an appropriate amount for pain and suffering in a car accident can be difficult. Generally speaking, the value of your claim is based on many different factors such as the degree of your injury, medical costs incurred, lost wages due to time taken off work, and other economic losses. Non-economic damages are generally more subjective since it is difficult to assign a dollar amount to the physical and emotional pain and suffering associated with an injury.

The most important factor in determining how much compensation is appropriate for pain and suffering is the severity of your injuries. The more serious your injuries, the higher the value of your claim will likely be. Other factors that may influence the determination include any permanent or long-term disability resulting from the accident and the effect it has on you mentally or emotionally. If you have questions, call us at Team Green Law to speak with a car accident lawyer.

What are emotional damages in a car accident?

Emotional damages in a car accident refer to the psychological impact that an incident can have on victims. These may include but are not limited to depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), fear of driving, loss of sleep or appetite, and other related reactions. Victims may also suffer from emotional distress due to the loss of a loved one, or the physical and mental pain resulting from their own injuries.

How do you prove someone is suffering from emotional distress?

Proving emotional distress in a court of law is often difficult as it is something that cannot be physically observed or measured. However, there are certain steps that can be taken to demonstrate the claim of emotional distress. These include gathering medical records and psychological evaluations and obtaining testimonials from friends, family members, co-workers, and experts who can provide detailed accounts of the individual’s emotional and psychological state. Other evidence that could be provided includes photographs, recordings, emails, or any other relevant documents that can demonstrate a change in behavior from before an incident to after.

How do you determine emotional distress damages?

Quantifying emotional distress damages after a car accident can be complicated and likely will require an experienced car accident lawyer to assist the victim in pursuing appropriate compensation. An experienced car accident lawyer at Team Green Law can explain this in more detail. In order to prove emotional distress caused by a car accident, victims must demonstrate that their mental suffering was directly related to the incident. This includes symptoms such as anxiety, depression, sleeplessness, and loss of appetite.

Victims can demonstrate emotional distress by showing how it has directly impacted their daily lives, including results like lost work or social opportunities. Supporting evidence such as medical records, witness accounts, and other forms of documentation to support the claim is beneficial.

Any actions taken by the negligent party that may have contributed to the emotional distress of the victim are also taken into account. This includes careless or reckless behavior while operating a vehicle, such as speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or disregarding traffic signals and signs. If these types of actions are proven, the court may award additional damages to help the victim cover costs associated with their emotional distress.

What type of compensatory damages will pay for pain and suffering?

In most cases, pain and suffering falls under the category of general compensatory damages, which are noneconomic damages. The amount awarded depends on a variety of factors, such as the severity and duration of the injury and its impact on the victim’s quality of life. It is important to note that compensatory damages are not meant to be punitive in nature, but rather a means of restoring victims to the position they were in before an injury occurred. If you have suffered an injury due to someone else’s negligence, don’t hesitate to contact a car accident lawyer who can help you pursue the compensation you may be entitled to.

Team Green is a different kind of law firm. We’re not going to make you promises we can’t deliver on. This is our promise to you: ​​we will guide you through the legal process, working with you through straight talk and personal attention, and we’ll work for you with smart, aggressive representation to get the settlement or judgment you deserve. Other lawyers show their case results on their websites, but not only does that imply results they can’t guarantee — it’s against the Indiana Rules of Professional Conduct (Rule 7.1 [2] (2)).  But you should know that the results of one successful case does not tell us what will happen with you. We will work with you to set realistic expectations of the timeline and money that could be recovered for your unique case.