A car accident can be damaging in more than just a physical sense. While you may suffer bodily injuries and property damage, you could also experience psychological problems associated with the crash, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In Nebraska, it is possible to claim damages, or financial compensation, for PTSD after a car accident. However, these are complicated cases that can be difficult to win.
What Is PTSD?
Post-traumatic stress disorder is a behavioral condition that can arise after a person lives through or experiences a psychologically traumatic event. While PTSD is often associated with soldiers who have been in war zones, it can also develop after other traumatic incidents, including car crashes. The symptoms of PTSD can be debilitating and may include:
- Flashbacks or reliving the experience
- Nightmares or insomnia
- Intense fear or anxiety regarding driving
- Avoidance of certain people, places or things that are reminders of the accident
- General anxiety or depression
- Trouble concentrating
- Sudden outbursts
- Other behavioral changes
Treating PTSD often requires therapy and medications. PTSD often goes away within a week or so after the car accident, but it can last much longer, in some cases. Crash survivors are more at risk of developing PTSD if the accident was severe, life-threatening or resulted in the death of a loved one.
Can You Claim Compensation for PTSD After a Car Accident in Nebraska?
In Nebraska, financial damages are available for nonphysical injuries after a car accident. State law refers to these as noneconomic damages, intangible losses or general damages. Noneconomic damages can include PTSD, as well as emotional distress, physical pain, anxiety, inconvenience, lost quality of life and loss of consortium. This means it is possible to claim compensation for PTSD during your car accident case in Omaha.
PTSD can result in missed time at work, lost wages, medical bills, and significant emotional and psychological distress. However, claiming compensation for PTSD after a car accident can be difficult. Car insurance companies often reject claims made for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and PTSD. Since PTSD is not a physical injury, it can be difficult to prove and convey its impact on your life. For a successful PTSD claim, you may need assistance from a car accident attorney in Omaha.
An attorney can help you prove that you have PTSD and that it was caused by the car accident. An attorney can set you up with a psychiatrist or psychologist, for example, who can give you an official diagnosis of PTSD if you do not already have one. Then, your attorney can help you gather letters from your psychologist, medical records, expert testimony, information about the car accident and other evidence to support your PTSD claim. In addition, an attorney can prevent a car insurance company from taking advantage of you during the claims process.
How Are PTSD Damages Calculated?
If your PTSD claim is successful, the amount of financial compensation that you receive for this behavioral condition will depend on your situation. In Nebraska, there is no cap on noneconomic damages in car accident cases. The value of your claim will be based on the severity of your PTSD, your prognosis, the amount of money that you have spent on related medical bills, how much the condition has affected your life and other factors.
Having an attorney represent you can improve the chances of obtaining maximum financial compensation for PTSD and emotional distress after a car accident. An attorney can demonstrate to an insurance company, judge or jury how your PTSD has impacted your life through compelling storytelling strategies. Your lawyer can express that you have life-altering PTSD in addition to the other consequences of the car accident. With a lawyer by your side, you can claim fair damages for your PTSD and get the results that you need to move forward.