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Proving Emotional Distress

how to prove emotional distress in court after an accidentWhen you are involved in a personal injury accident, you may experience not only serious injuries, but also mental injury in the form of emotional distress. Your mental anguish is just as compensable as your physical injuries, but harder to prove. Your non-physical injury cannot be seen from the outside, nor can a price for medical treatment easily be put on it. In emotional distress cases, there are certain elements that must be proven before you are able to recover monetary damages. Because emotional distress lawsuit cases can be extremely difficult to prove, if you or a loved one have a claim, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Huntsville and Madison County personal injury attorney to help strategize about the best possible outcomes for your situation.

Proving Emotional Distress in Court

Having emotional distress following an accident is not only understandable, but it can also be difficult to deal with. It is even more difficult when you have to prove it in court. In the United States, there are two forms of emotional distress: negligent infliction and intentional infliction. Negligent infliction of emotional distress is a personal injury claim in which another person carelessly acts and because of their act or inaction, causes another person emotional distress. Though many states recognize a claim for negligent infliction of emotional distress, Alabama does not.

In Alabama, to have an emotional distress claim, there must be an intentional infliction of emotional distress. Intentional infliction means that there is some form of intentional conduct that is so extreme and outrageous, that it causes severe and serious emotional distress. It is important to note that “mere insult” is not enough to prove an intentional infliction of emotional distress claim and that not all offensive conduct is going to rise to the level of being so extreme and outrageous to give way to emotional distress. Also, in Alabama, if the conduct is conducted to a third party, then there are other elements that must be satisfied to prove an emotional distress lawsuit case. Because each case and situation is unique, it is invaluable to seek legal advice and representation if you find yourself in this circumstance.

Need Legal Advice?

Proving emotional distress can be difficult, especially when it is not accompanied by physical injury. If the elements are not proven, then you cannot be compensated for any emotional distress that you sustain or have sustained. Because of this, if you or a loved one have been involved in a personal injury accident and are experiencing emotional distress, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Huntsville and Madison County personal injury attorney at Hornsby Watson & Hornsby to help you with your case. We know how to prove emotional distress in court. Contact our office today.


Our personal injury attorneys in Huntsville, AL are proud of the accomplishments and results we have obtained over more than a century of combined experience. We remain committed to our roots as a client-focused personal injury law firm, however, and every client — beginning when they meet with us for the first time in a private, no-cost and no-obligation consultation.

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