Pursuing Compensation for PTSD From an Accident

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Last modified on June 3, 2024

Pursuing Compensation for PTSD From an Accident

Physical injuries from an accident can be excruciating and debilitating. However, while they might be the most visible consequences for an accident victim, the psychological effects can sometimes be just as life-altering. One of the most significant mental health outcomes a person may face after an accident is post-traumatic stress disorder. Many people wonder, “Can you sue for PTSD after an accident in South Carolina?” If you can demonstrate that your PTSD was a direct result of the accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Here is everything you need to know. 

What Is PTSD?

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition triggered by experiencing or witnessing a terrifying event. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety, uncontrollable thoughts about the event, and avoidance of situations that remind you of the event. People with PTSD will often relive the traumatic experience through intrusive and disturbing recollections known as flashbacks. The disorder leads to significant impairment and distress in daily functioning. 

What Types of Incidents Can Cause PTSD?

According to some studies, as many as 58 percent of road traffic accident survivors have post-traumatic stress disorder. However, PTSD can result from any incident that causes sudden trauma, including: 

How Do You Know If You Have PTSD from an Accident?

There are several signs and symptoms that may indicate PTSD after an accident. These include:

  • Repeated, distressing memories or dreams about the accident
  • Emotional distress when reminded of the accident
  • Physical reactivity when reminded of the accident, such as elevated heart rate or sweating
  • Avoiding people or situations connected to the accident
  • Negative shifts in mood and cognition after the accident
  • Feelings of fear, horror, anger, guilt, or shame related to the accident
  • Problems with concentration or sleep

If your symptoms last more than a month, worsen over time and make it difficult to function normally, it is critical to seek an evaluation for PTSD from a mental health professional.

Can You Get Compensation for PTSD After an Accident?

South Carolina allows accident victims to recover compensation for two broad categories of losses: economic and non-economic. Economic losses include medical expenses, lost income due to missed time at work, and property damage. Non-economic losses are the less tangible effects of the accident on a person’s life. These may include pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and psychological effects such as PTSD.

While the experience of PTSD does not equate to a specific dollar amount, you have the right to claim financial compensation for the condition if you can prove that it is a direct result of the accident. How much money can you get for PTSD after an accident? The answer depends on several factors, including the severity of your PTSD and its effects on your life. A knowledgeable South Carolina personal injury attorney can compare your situation to previous claims in your jurisdiction and estimate how much you may be able to recover. 

How Do You Prove You Have PTSD?

Pursuing Compensation for PTSD From an Accident

There are a few key steps to proving you developed PTSD from the accident:

  • Seek diagnosis and documentation of PTSD from a qualified mental health professional like a psychologist or psychiatrist.
  • Provide medical records that demonstrate you did not have PTSD before the accident.
  • Present evidence from your doctor stating your PTSD was most likely caused by trauma from the accident.
  • Show how PTSD has impaired your normal functioning through testimony from friends, family, and coworkers about observed emotional and behavioral changes.

An experienced personal injury lawyer can help obtain and compile all relevant medical evidence and testimony to conclusively establish your PTSD stemming from the accident. 

Does Insurance Cover Therapy Costs for PTSD in South Carolina?

Therapy costs for PTSD are included among the economic costs of an accident. That means South Carolina allows accident victims to recover expenses for treatments or sessions with psychologists, psychiatrists, therapists, or counselors. Furthermore, you may also recover the costs of any prescription medication for your PTSD.

Contact an Experienced South Carolina Personal Injury Attorney

If you were injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence and have developed PTSD because of the accident, you have the right to claim compensation. The seasoned legal team at Murphy Crantford Meehan understands how challenging life with PTSD can feel, and we are committed to doing everything we can to help you.

With more than 50 years of combined legal experience, we can craft a solid case to optimize your chances of receiving the compensation you deserve. With us on your side, you can begin to get your life back on track. Call us at (843) 396-3496 or contact us online today for a free case evaluation to learn more about how we can help you.


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