Can You Sue for Emotional Distress from a Car Accident?

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Being injured in a car accident can impact all aspects of your life. While your physical injuries may have the most obvious and immediate effects, the psychological effects of the accident could ultimately prove to be the most costly. If you are experiencing emotional distress from a car accident, here’s what you need to know: 

Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Does Not Cover Emotional Distress

Florida is a “no fault” auto insurance state (although there is a possibility that this may change in 2021). Under Florida’s “no fault” law, you are limited to seeking personal injury protection (PIP) coverage after a car accident unless you can show that you suffered a “significant” or “permanent” injury. 

PIP does not cover emotional distress. So, in order to seek financial compensation for your emotional distress, you will need to be able to file a car accident lawsuit outside of PIP.

You May Be Able to File a Car Accident Lawsuit Outside of PIP

If you suffered a “significant” or “permanent” injury in your car accident, a lawyer may be able to help you file a car accident lawsuit. If you have grounds to file a lawsuit, you can seek financial compensation for your emotional distress. Some common grounds for filing car accident lawsuits include: 

  • Driver negligence (i.e. distracted, drunk, aggressive, or reckless driving) 
  • Hiring an inexperienced or unlicensed driver
  • Failure to perform appropriate maintenance or repairs on a vehicle 
  • Negligent road construction or maintenance 
  • Selling a defective vehicle 

You Must Be Able to Prove that You are Suffering from Emotional Distress 

In order to file a successful lawsuit, you must be able to prove that you are suffering from emotional distress. This means that you need to seek treatment, and you need to keep track of all of the ways your emotional distress impacts your life. The more evidence you have to prove your emotional distress, the greater chance you will have to recover just compensation. 

Recovering Compensation for Emotional Distress from a Car Accident Isn’t Easy 

No matter how much evidence you are able to gather, recovering financial compensation for your emotional distress won’t be easy. The insurance companies will fight your claim and, while they might eventually agree to settle, there is also a chance that you will need to take your case to court. 

With that said, if you are entitled to financial compensation for emotional distress from a car accident, it is extremely important that you assert your legal rights. The financial and non-financial costs of emotional distress can be substantial. An experienced attorney can help and, by hiring a lawyer to file a car accident lawsuit, you can ensure that the consequences of your accident are no greater than necessary.

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Are you experiencing emotional distress after a car accident in Miami? If so, we encourage you to contact us promptly for a free, no-obligation consultation. To speak with an experienced car accident attorney in confidence, tell us how we can reach you online now.