People sustain different types of injuries when they’ve been involved in an accident. Whether due to a negligent driver or due to negligence in the workplace, accidents that result in injuries do happen. What may outwardly appear to be a minor injury may only be the tip of the iceberg. Sometimes a few minor injuries have a cumulative effect and create other less noticeable problems. They could be physical, mental, or emotional.
If you’ve been in an accident and sustained minor injuries, you may be curious if hiring a personal injury attorney is worth it. Washington residents can contact a Kent personal injury lawyer and inquire about their rights. In this article, we’ll discuss your options when seeking an attorney for a personal injury lawsuit.
Do I Have A Legitimate Personal Injury Case?
Washington State personal injury law requires that you prove that due to the negligence of another party, you sustained injuries, physical or otherwise. Fortunately, most personal injury attorneys offer an initial free consultation, so it won’t cost you an arm and a leg to speak with a professional about the legitimacy of your claim. An experienced personal injury lawyer will know if your case is worth pursuing.
If an attorney believes that your injuries, no matter how minor, can be easily proved as a direct result of negligence, they’ll need to determine if they are severe enough to file for damages. Although sore muscles and scratches may not be enough to file a lawsuit, other factors should be considered.
Minor Injuries Can Cause Other Issues
Filing a personal injury lawsuit for minor physical injuries won’t get you anywhere. However, an accident can cause other types of damage other than to the body. For some, the unfortunate experience of an accident can cause long-lasting psychological issues. This is especially true if the accident could have been easily avoided and was particularly devastating.
If your quality of life has been affected due to the accident, you can file a claim asking for compensation for emotional damage.
Psychological And Emotional Stress
Many people who have been involved in accidents don’t necessarily have the scars or broken bones to prove they’ve been injured. However, psychological scars can run deep and can cause numerous emotional issues. They can not only affect a person’s quality of life, but they can also sometimes affect their ability to earn a living.
A personal injury lawsuit can sue for many different types of damages. Some of them that may not have known about include the following:
- Pain and suffering
- Difficulty sleeping
- Increased anxiety
- Nightmares or flashbacks
- Fear of driving
Many of these psychological issues could lead to an inability to maintain a job which could lead to a loss of income. The accident is over, but the long-lasting emotional issues could remain for a lifetime and may require extensive mental health care and counseling.
Is It Difficult To Prove Post-Accident Psychological Issues?
When seeking damages for emotional and psychological distress in a personal injury lawsuit, the burden of proof is yours. Your legal counsel will have to prove that your mental pain and suffering were directly caused by the accident and that it has negatively affected your life.
The most common way to prove your claims is by submitting medical records for any mental health treatment or psychological evaluations you’ve received. Sworn testimony by friends and family outlining your mental or emotional changes after the accident is also acceptable. Your lawyer may also hire medical experts to back up your claims of mental anguish and other emotional issues brought about by the accident.
Not All Accident Injuries Are Visible
When you’ve been the victim of negligence, your physical injuries may be minor. But for many, they’re left with emotional and psychological scars that, although aren’t easily seen, they could last a lifetime. Anxiety, stress, and difficulties sleeping are common after a traumatic event. Some could cause other health-related issues.
If you’ve been involved in an accident and aren’t sure if your minor injuries justify hiring an attorney, it’s crucial to understand that not all injuries are physical. Loss of income due to emotional issues can be compensated along with the pain and suffering resulting from an accident.