Mental Trauma After a Car Accident: How to Claim Compensation in Arkansas

The thought of a car crash is devastating enough, but getting into one can turn your life upside down. The implications go beyond physical injuries and property damage because you may suffer emotionally, sometimes for a lifetime. Even worse, car accidents are the leading cause of death and injuries in the US, with 35,768 fatal car accidents in 2020 alone. That’s when fewer vehicles were on the road.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics, Arkansas is one of the top five most dangerous states for drivers, with the driver fatality rate being 95% more than the national average. The state capital, Little Rock, leads when it comes to the number of accidents. Fort Smith and Fayetteville are next in line for the accident count in the state.

As a resident, you must be extra cautious on the roads of Arkansas. Most importantly, you need to be aware of your rights if you get into an unfortunate mishap. Anyone suffering due to someone else’s negligence can claim compensation. Besides the physical injuries, compensation covers mental trauma too.

Let us explain how you can make the guilty party pay for your emotional suffering.

Forms of Mental Trauma

Unlike physical injuries, mental trauma does not leave marks and scars on a victim’s body. But it is as real as physical pain, bleeding, broken bones, or internal injuries. Data shows that many accident victims experience physiological trauma stemming from a crash, even if they do not have severe physical injuries. 

Here are the potential forms of mental and emotional suffering victims encounter:

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (32.3%)
  • Depression (17.4%)
  • Anxiety (5.8%)

Life may never be the same for some victims because these emotional scars remain forever. Fortunately, psychological treatment can be a savior, but it can be expensive and time-taking.

Establishing Mental Suffering

Accident victims in Arkansas need to establish their pain and suffering in court to validate their car accident compensation claim. It can be tricky for those filing for mental trauma because it isn’t visible, no matter how much it hurts. You need to be more concerned if you live in Little Rock, as the city has witnessed a 43% increase in fatal car accidents during last year.

The number can stress you out, even if you survive a crash. The memories may haunt you forever unless you seek justice and medical help. A Little Rock car accident lawyer can help you with both, by gathering valid evidence to prove your mental suffering in court. 

The following pieces of evidence can support your claim:

  • The medical diagnosis of a mental health condition
  • Treatment records from a licensed provider
  • Testimony from an expert witness such as a mental health practitioner
  • Observations from family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers

Claiming the Rightful Compensation

According to the CDC, more than 1 in 5 American adults live with a mental illness, making it a pressing concern for the healthcare system. The implications touch the legal system, enabling personal injury victims to claim compensation for their emotional distress. Like all other states, accident victims in Arkansas can claim compensation for mental anguish caused by a car mishap.   

But calculating the cost of these less-obvious injuries is the tricky part. Keith Law Group states that you can rely on a seasoned car accident attorney to help you determine the monetary value of this form of suffering. 

Here are the elements they include in the compensation value:

  • Medical costs of treating psychiatric ailments, such as counseling fees, prescription medication, and long-term rehab costs
  • The value of lost wages due to emotional distress as issues like PTSD, depression, and anxiety may keep victims from working in some roles or giving their best at work
  • Lost quality of life due to constant stress and lack of mental stability

While calculating the exact value of these factors may be challenging, a lawyer takes into account tangible and intangible expenses to get a figure that covers your loss. The costs can run in thousands, making it a critical component of your compensation value. 

Wrapping Up

Mental suffering is something accident victims tend to overlook only because it isn’t visible. But it can affect your life and health in more than one way. Personal injury law has your back in this context as it empowers you to legally claim compensation for your emotional trauma and suffering. 

Awareness and reliable legal assistance can help you get the claim you deserve. Follow up on your mental well-being and collaborate with an expert attorney to cover both fronts.