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Calculating Emotional Distress after an Accident

10422524_s-300x199 (1).jpgPhoto Credit: 123RF Stock Photo[/caption] If you were injured in a personal injury accident, such as a car crash or a trucking accident, you may be able to recover for your injuries - physical and emotional injuries. Emotional injuries can include things like anxiety, depression, insomnia, and post-traumatic stress disorder. According to WedMD, a significant number of people involved in nonfatal auto accidents experience emotional injuries, such as PTSD, persistent anxiety, depression and phobias on year after the car crash. In order to establish liability for a personal injury accident, you must prove the following:

  • The defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care;
  • The defendant breached his or her duty of care;
  • The plaintiff suffered injuries; and
  • The breach of the defendant's duty of care was the proximate cause of the plaintiff's injuries.

Once liability is established, you will then need to prove the amount of damages. Whereas the calculation of damages for physical injuries and lost wages is often fairly straightforward, the calculation of emotional distress and pain and suffering (which are also known as special damages) can be a bit more challenging. Because emotional injuries are more subjective, they can be more difficult to prove and quantify. Moreover, a personal injury victim may not immediately seek medical attention for emotional injuries, which can make it more challenging to provide adequate medical information to support the claim. While there is no set forth a formula for determining pain and suffering, some states (though not Illinois) impose a cap on the total amount of pain and suffering damages.

Contact a Car Crash Lawyer

If you or a loved one were injured in a car accident, or other personal injury accident, you should seek comprehensive medical attention, including assessment and treatment for emotional injuries, as soon as possible. You should also consult with a car accident lawyer as soon as possible so that you can begin taking the appropriate legal actions to preserve your right to bring a legal claim and assemble the necessary information to calculate the amount of personal injury damages, including physical and emotional injuries. The Chicago accident and injury lawyers at Steinberg, Goodman & Kalish focus on representing accident and injury victims. We can help you find the appropriate medical attention, conduct a factual investigation of the accident, file the necessary legal documents, and advocate on your behalf to get you a full and fair personal injury damage award. Contact Steinberg, Goodman & Kalish at (312) 782-1386 to schedule a free consultation with one of our Chicago car accident lawyers.     Steinberg Goodman & Kalish ( is dedicated to protecting victims and their families.  We handle medical malpractice, product liability, personal injury, wrongful death, auto accidents, professional negligence, birth trauma, and railroad law matters. Contact us at (888) 325-7299 or (312) 445-9084.

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