A car accident lawsuit won’t cure your post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Still, it can provide you with compensation so that you can afford essential treatment and avoid the significant financial consequences of a car crash.
Here, our experienced car accident lawyers provide you with the critical information you need to protect your recovery.
What It’s Like to Live With PTSD
PTSD presents differently for each individual, but everyone with PTSD has symptoms that last longer than one month and interfere with their relationships, work, or daily activities. If you or someone you love has experienced the trauma of a car crash, you should be aware of possible PTSD symptoms so that you can get the proper diagnosis, treatment, and legal recovery.
Adult PTSD Symptoms
Adults may experience some or all of the following:
- Flashbacks or nightmares
- Avoidance of places, events, or things that remind them of the car crash
- Physical symptoms such as being easily startled or tense
- Sleep problems
- Difficulty controlling emotions or angry outbursts
- Difficulty remembering the details of the car crash
- Disinterest in activities they typically enjoy
Other symptoms that impact mood, cognition, or other mental processes should also be discussed with a doctor.
PTSD Symptoms in Children and Adolescents
Children and teens may respond differently to trauma.
Young children, for example, may:
- Wet the bed
- Regress with developmental milestones, such as talking
- Repeatedly act or “play” the car crash
- Need to be closer than usual to parents or other trusted caregivers
Teenagers and older children may:
- Act out by being disruptive, destructive, or disrespectful
- Experience thoughts of revenge
- Feel guilty for not preventing the crash
Your child’s doctor can help you determine whether your child is experiencing typical feelings of emotional distress after a car crash or whether your child may have PTSD.
After a PTSD diagnosis, you may benefit from treatment that includes one or more of the following:
- Psychotherapy. Therapists provide a safe place for people with PTSD to talk about their symptoms and other issues of importance. A therapist may provide strategies to help people cope with PTSD as well as comfort and advice.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy. This type of psychotherapy helps people with PTSD identify harmful patterns and replace those patterns with healthy patterns.
- Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR). Clinicians may track and guide your eye movements while you are thinking about a traumatic event and redirect the brain’s associations to lessen PTSD symptoms.
- Medication. Sometimes, medication is necessary for people with PTSD.
How to Prove a Car Crash Caused PTSD
Insurance companies often try to deny PTSD claims. They may argue that your emotional suffering isn’t as bad as you claim it to be or that you suffer for reasons other than the crash.
It is up to you to prove that you suffered PTSD in the car crash and that you deserve fair compensation for your injuries, but you don’t have to do it alone. Our experienced car accident lawyers are here to help you present a strong case.
A successful car accident claim requires you to prove:
- The other driver owed you a duty of care.
- The other driver breached the duty of care.
- Your injuries were caused by the other driver’s breach of the duty of care.
- You have a legal right to damages.
General evidence about the car accident may include things such as:
- Red light or security camera footage
- Vehicle damage
- Eyewitness testimony
- Medical records
Additionally, you may require expert witness testimony about your PTSD injury.
Possible PTSD Compensation After a Car Crash
PTSD symptoms may interfere with your ability to earn an income, and PTSD treatment may be costly. If you suffer PTSD after a car crash, you may be able to recover damages for PTSD and any other injuries you suffered in the crash. This may include compensation for your past and future:
- Medical costs, including mental health treatment, hospitalizations, medications, and doctor’s visits
- Lost income if you lose any wages, bonuses, benefits, or income from self-employment because of your car crash injuries
- Physical pain for any physical injuries you suffered in the crash
- Emotional suffering for your PTSD and any other emotional injuries you suffered in the crash
- All other damages related to your car crash
These damages are not automatically awarded to everyone who suffers PTSD in a car wreck. Instead, you need to pursue a car accident lawsuit to get the compensation that you deserve.
Tips for Protecting Your Car Accident Claim
You deserve a fair recovery for your PTSD, just as you do for car accident injuries that are easier to prove. After a crash, we encourage you to protect your legal rights by:
- Calling the police to the accident scene
- Requesting a copy of the police report after the crash
- Accepting medical attention at the accident scene
- Following up with all recommended medical and psychological treatment
- Protecting relevant evidence
- Avoiding mistakes, such as posting on social media
- Letting your lawyer handle all insurance negotiations
- Contacting an attorney as soon as possible
You don’t have to handle your own recovery. Your medical team can guide you through your physical and emotional recovery while your car accident attorney protects your legal rights and recovery.
Have You Been Injured In A Wisconsin, Illinois or Iowa Car Accident?
If you've been injured in a car accident you should speak to an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible. You can contact us online or call our office directly at 800.800.5678 to schedule your free consultation with one of our car accident lawyers. We have been helping car accident victims since 1964 and service clients throughout Illinois, Wisconsin and Iowa.Did the accident take place in Wisconsin?