How does California law define a psychological injury?

A psychological injury is a condition that develops as a result of a traumatic event. This type of condition can affect a person’s ability to perform routine personal and work tasks. In general, the types of traumatic events that give rise to psychological injuries are those that occur unexpectedly, leaving the person affected with a feeling of loss of control over the situation.

Following a traumatic event, most people experience feelings of fear, anger, and loss of control; however, many of these symptoms resolve over time. For an individual who has suffered psychological injury as a result of trauma, symptoms can worsen over time and can lead to complications, one of the most serious being suicide.

If you experience any of these symptoms of psychological injury, you should contact a doctor or mental health professional:

  • Intrusive thoughts or visuals of the event.
  • Sleep disturbances (nightmares, insomnia, or difficulty staying awake).
  • Memory loss or difficulty concentrating.
  • Humor changes.
  • Disorientation or confusion.
  • Avoidance of reminders of the trauma experienced.

Because the compensation provided through a personal injury claim depends on the specifics of the case, it is difficult to speak of an “average” amount an individual may receive for this type of injury. In cases involving psychological injuries, the value of your claim is determined by the following factors:

  • The sum of the financial expenses that you have incurred or are likely to incur due to your injury.
  • The severity of your injury. The more serious this is, the higher the amount you can claim for non-material damages.
  • The total of the economic damages is added to the total of the non-material damages to establish the value of your case.

If you have suffered a psychological injury in an accident caused by another person, you may be entitled to seek compensation. You do not have to deal with the consequences of these injuries on your own. Contact us.