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HomeBlogAuto AccidentsWhat Counts as Emotional Distress after an Accident?

What Counts as Emotional Distress after an Accident?

If you’ve been injured in an accident that was caused by another driver’s negligence, you can seek compensation for your covered losses, which are called legal damages. These losses include property damage to your vehicle, your medical expenses, your lost income, and your emotional distress, which refers to your physical and emotional pain and suffering. Better understanding of emotional distress can help you with your claim. 

If this is the difficult situation you find yourself in, don’t wait to discuss your claim with an experienced Illinois car accident attorney

The Car Accident

Car accidents tend to come out of nowhere, and they’re often caused by negligence on the part of the other drivers involved, such as distraction, impairment, or excess speed. These accidents tend to be jarring and terrifying, and in addition to any physical injuries you experience, you can suffer emotional setbacks that are difficult to overcome. Even when both drivers walk away from a car accident with no obvious injuries, it’s important to know that some physical injuries take time to develop symptoms and that the signs of emotional distress can sneak up on you.

Your Emotional Distress

Your emotional distress is the psychological pain and suffering you experience in the wake of a frightening car accident that leaves you shaken. This form of legal damage can take many shapes, but the one thing they all have in common is that they drag you down and make it more difficult for you to live the life you’ve created for yourself to the fullest. 

Common expressions of emotional distress include:

  • Sleep disturbances, which can include insomnia and night terrors
  • Severe mood swings that you have little or no control over
  • Terrifying accident flashbacks that interfere with your daily life
  • Fear of getting back behind the wheel of your car
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Loss of interest in the things that once gave you pleasure
  • Increased anxiety
  • Depressive episodes

Proving Emotional Distress

While demonstrating your losses in relation to your vehicle, medical bills, and lost wages is fairly straightforward, proving the degree to which you’ve suffered emotional distress can be far more challenging. Obtaining the compensation to which you are entitled, however, is critical to your recovery and well-being, which makes proving your emotional pain and suffering essential. The kind of evidence you’ll turn to includes:

  • Your medical reports and your doctor’s input on the matter
  • Evidence of any appointments with a mental healthcare professional and their input on your behalf
  • Testimony from those who know you best, such as family members, close friends, neighbors, coworkers, and your supervisor or boss

If a car accident leaves you with significant emotional distress, proving this category of loss is paramount. 

Reach Out to an Experienced Illinois Car Accident Attorney Today

The trusted car accident attorneys at The Horwitz Law Group in Chicago recognize how serious post-accident emotional distress can be and are committed to fiercely advocating for your full and fair compensation. Your recovery is important, so please don’t wait to contact us for a free initial consultation today.



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for a woman who was hit by a car while crossing the street.


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