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Psychological Injury Claims – How much compensation could I be entitled to?

By Max Mitrovic. Last updated 7th June 2022. Welcome to our guide looking at the question “how much compensation for psychological harm could I receive in psychological injury claims?”.

If you have been involved in any type of accident, be it a car crash, an accident at work, an incident involving medical negligence, or any other type of accident, damages cannot only be physical, but psychological as well. When you are making a personal injury claim, you cannot only claim for the physical pain and suffering you have been subject to, but you can also claim the psychological impact as well.

how much compensation for psychological injury

How much compensation for psychological injury?

While some types of personal injury claims regularly include psychological damages, for example, medical negligence that has led to birth injuries, the severity of the psychiatric damage will vary depending on the situation. For instance, the effect of a severe road traffic accident involving a head-on collision could cause someone to feel anxious or fear getting into another car, or they may suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Whereas a minor slip, trip or fall at work could cause someone to suffer less severe anxiety while recovering from their injuries.

No matter what has happened to you or the psychological pain that you have gone through or continue to go through, it is essential to know that this will be taken into account when making a personal injury claim for psychological damage so you receive the right damages for your trauma.

At Legal Expert, we have years of experience in launching personal injury claims. It is always our aim to secure the maximum amount of personal injury compensation possible for each case. This includes compensation for all of the physical trauma that you have suffered. Read on to discover everything you need to know about making psychological injury claims. If you still have any questions, you can contact us on the details below:

  • Telephone: 0800 073 8804
  • Contact form: Fill out the enquiry form and an advisor will get back to you.
  • Live chat: Use the function below to speak with an advisor.

How much compensation could I claim for psychological injury after 3 years?

Did you know that personal injury claims have a general time limit of 3 years? This means that you must begin making your claim before this limitation period has expired, which is typically 3 years from the date of the incident or from the date of knowledge (when you realised that you suffered as a result of someone else’s negligence).

In other words, if you wait too long before bringing forward your claim, you could lose out on the compensation that you deserve as the time limit will expire.

However, in some cases, exceptions can be made to this period. If a claimant is unable to make legal proceedings themselves, whether they’re mentally incapacitated or they’re under the minimum age of 18, the time limit is frozen until they gain the ability to claim. Alternatively, a litigation friend can apply to claim on their behalf, securing their compensation in a trust that can be accessed for accident or injury-related expenses.

To see if you’re still within the time limit to claim or to see whether you could act as a litigation friend on behalf of another claimant, please don’t hesitate to get in touch today for a free consultation with our team of specialist advisors. In the meantime, if you’re wondering “how much compensation for psychological harm?”, please read on to learn more.

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A complete guide to psychological injury claims

The legal system places as much emphasis on mental and psychological injuries as physical injuries, and rightly so. If you have been involved in an accident, it is likely that you have suffered both physical and psychological injuries. It is essential to know that you will be receiving damages for both types of injuries.

You can also claim if you have only sustained mental injuries and you have not experienced any physical injuries. For example, family members can claim if they have been involved in an accident, and they have witnessed one of their family members die due to what has happened.

If you want to make a claim for psychological damages, it is crucial to know how to go about the claim process and the amount of compensation you may receive. In this guide, you will find out everything you need to know, including the typical psychological injury compensation amounts, claiming PTSD, psychological injuries as a primary or secondary victim, and how to begin psychological injury claims.

What is a psychological injury and how can they occur?

Before answering the question “how much compensation for psychological injury could I be owed?”, we must first look at what constitutes a psychological injury. A psychological injury in the UK or anywhere else in the world can happen if you have been the victim of any type of traumatic event or you have witnessed any type of traumatic event. This could be anything from a military incident to an accident at work or a road traffic accident.

Psychological illnesses can include the likes of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). There are many different symptoms you can experience if you are suffering from a psychological illness. This includes nightmares, flashbacks, irritability, low mood, inability to cope and feelings of extreme anxiety.

Statistics on psychological injuries

According to a survey Mind carried out in 2014, 1 in 4 people are estimated to experience a mental health problem each year in England. Additionally, 1 in 6 people report experiencing common mental health problems each week in England, such as anxiety and depression.

The Mental Health Foundation has provided a comprehensive summary of mental health research, and in this section of the guide, we are going to take a moment to delve into the statistics.

Mental health injuries are more common than most people realise. In the document entitled Fundamental Facts about Mental Health 2016, which has been provided by the Mental Health Foundation, there are several interesting statistics regarding the prevalence of mental health around the world and in the United Kingdom.

In the UK, almost one in two adults believe that they have suffered from a mental health condition at some point in their life. A third of women and a fifth of men have had their diagnosis confirmed by medical professionals.

Mental health conditions can affect people of all ages. The graph below shows the prevalence of different mental health conditions by various age groups.

how much compensation for psychological injury statistics graph

How much compensation for psychological injury statistics graph

Mind has also provided statistics regarding mental health outlining some of the most common causes and factors. Let’s take a closer look a mental health statistics:

  • 8 in 100 people suffer from mixed depression and anxiety.
  • 6 in 100 people suffer from Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD).
  • 4 in 100 people suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
  • 3 in 100 people suffered from depression.
  • 2 in 100 people suffered from a phobia.
  • 1 in 100 people suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Fewer than 1 in 100 people suffer from Panic Disorder.

It’s important to note that the figures may be much higher as the survey that provided these figures was only carried out on certain groups. Additionally, whilst they don’t refer directly to psychological injury claims, it gives an insight into mental health in the UK.

Psychological injury examples

Many different types of conditions count as psychological injuries. This includes the likes of:

  • Mood disorders including adjustment and fear
  • Depression
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder

In the workplace, a psychological injury refers to any type of stress that is work-related and can be linked to an emotional condition that results from perceived or real harm. It is essential to recognise that a psychological injury is not merely workplace stress. However, stress is a response to the mental disorder the person is experiencing. This could be depression, an anxiety disorder, or one of the other examples have been presented above.

Additionally, you may have experienced depression and anxiety due to bullying at work. If your employer was made aware of the bullying and failed to take reasonable action to prevent you from experiencing further harm, you may be able to seek compensation.

As you can see, there is no definition of psychological injuries set in stone, so to speak. This is because everyone is different, and we can all experience mental injuries in different ways. However, this does not mean that employers are able to exploit the lack of definition.

What are the symptoms of a psychological injury?

There are many different types of symptoms that a person can experience if they are suffering from a psychological injury. Of course, this all depends on the type of psychological injury you are experiencing. Nevertheless, we will shed light on some of the most common conditions below, as well as the symptoms that are usually associated with them.

Depression symptoms

This can lead to disturbed sleep, feeling irritable, feeling tearful, having no interest and motivation in anything, and feeling in a low mood all of the time.

Anxiety disorder symptoms

When someone is experiencing anxiety, they can often also experience physical sensations like dizziness and heart palpitations, feelings of restlessness, or worry, and sleeping difficulties.

PTSD symptoms

The most common symptom an individual with people living with PTSD from his re-experiencing the traumatic event in the form of physical sensations, including trembling, nausea, sweating or pain, and distressing and repetitive sensations images, nightmares, and flashbacks. Other issues include feeling on edge, leading to problems with concentration, insomnia, angry outbursts, and irritability. You may also feel that you are unable to relax because of acute anxiety, you may not be able to talk about the event, and you may suffer emotional avoidance of memory triggers concerning the events, including the people and the places. So this can have a profound impact on your social life.

I have PTSD after armed service – can I claim compensation?

Okay so you can seek compensation under the AFCS for injuries sustained in combat because it’s not about placing blame on anyone or about liability etc. But if duty of care is breached which causes someone to sustain an injury, they can make a pi claim?

A lot of people suffer PTSD after they have gone to war. After all, this condition happens due to experiencing a traumatic event, and what could be more traumatic than serving in the armed services?

If you have PTSD because of this, you may be wondering whether you can make an accident claim. You could seek compensation under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS) for injuries sustained in service. However, it’s important to note that the AFCS isn’t about proving liability. Instead, it seeks to provide compensation to those who experienced harm while serving.

If a breach of duty of care caused you to sustain an injury, you could make a personal injury claim provided you have evidence that someone else’s negligence caused you to sustain harm.

Psychological injury after a traumatic event – will I be able to claim?

If you have been involved in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you could claim compensation. When launching an accident claim, the most critical aspect is establishing responsibility and being able to prove who is liable for what has happened.

For example, you may have been involved in a road traffic accident that was caused by a careless driver failing to drive at the correct speed limit. If so, you will be able to launch psychological injury claims for compensation.

Other examples include accidents that have happened in the workplace because of employer negligence and injuries that have occurred because of medical negligence, product liability cases, food poisoning, and any other type of accident caused by someone else.

Alternatively, you may have sustained a facial scar injury due to dental negligence involving your dentist using the incorrect equipment to perform your procedure.

Can I claim for an accident at work, causing psychological injuries?

If you have been injured in the workplace and it was not your fault, you can claim for the pain and suffering you have experienced because of it. This not only includes physical injuries, but you can also claim for the psychological damages too. You need to be able to prove that the accident was not your fault.

In most cases, it will be the employer that is to blame for what has happened. All employers have a duty to ensure that they provide a healthy and safe working environment for their workforce. If your employer has failed to do this and you have suffered psychological injuries as a consequence, you will be able to claim. There are many different ways that an accident can happen in the workplace. Here are some common examples outlined by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE):

  • 8% of injuries have been caused because of falling from a height.
  • 33% of accidents were a direct result of a slip trip and fall.
  • 18% of incidents were a direct result of handling or lifting items.
  • 10% of workplace accidents were caused after being struck by a moving object.
  • 8% of accidents were caused by acts of violence.

For more information on claiming compensation for a psychiatric injury in the workplace, call our team.

Can I claim for sexual abuse psychological injuries?

There is no denying that sexual abuse can be one of the most traumatic experiences for any person to go through. Survivors of sexual violence can often experience a wide range of both physical and psychological disorders because of what has happened to them.

Examples include this disassociation, substance abuse, sexually transmitted infections, self-harm, post-traumatic stress disorder, flashbacks, depression, sleep disorders, and eating disorders.

If you have experienced any of the symptoms that have been mentioned or any other type of mental injury because of what has happened to you, you will be able to make a claim for this. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with us for further information. You can rest assured that we handle psychological injury claims with complete confidentiality.

For more information on claiming compensation for emotional distress in the UK, call our team.

Psychological injuries after a break-in – can I make a claim?

If you have been injured due to a burglary, you may be feeling anxious and not safe in your own home. No one should feel this way. In these cases, you may wish to make a claim through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). The CICA provides compensation for victims of violent crime.

For more information on seeking compensation following a break-in, call our team on the number above. They’ll be able to discuss your case in more detail.

I’ve suffered psychological trauma after a car crash – do I have a claim?

If you have been involved in a car crash caused by another road users negligence, you can claim both the psychological injuries and the physical injuries you have suffered. Car accidents can often be quite traumatic. Some people may be scared to get back in a car again, and others may have flashbacks of the event.

No matter what type of psychological harm you are suffering from, you could claim, but it is essential to make sure that you are medically diagnosed so that you can launch a successful claim.

Claiming for a psychological injury as a primary victim

A primary victim is an individual who could reasonably and foreseeably suffer physical damage due to a defendant’s actions. Medical negligence is a prime example of this. The claimant does not actually need to suffer physical harm in order to be classified as a primary victim, there needs to be the potential for this to have been the case. Psychological injury claims can be made if you are a primary victim.

Claiming for a psychological injury as a secondary victim

The definition of a secondary victim is a little bit more complicated. This is described as a witness to an injury that was passive and unwilling.

There are many different circumstances in which a person can become a secondary victim, for example, you may have been present at the scene of a traumatic event shortly after it happened, you may have had close ties of affection and love to the person that suffered, or the event may have come from sudden and unexpected shock.

All in all, the psychological damages you have suffered have resulted from seeing someone you love in extreme danger or discomfort, or indeed witnessing the death of the primary victim. You need to prove that shock has played a role in how you are feeling and in most cases, there will be some sort of relationship or connection between you and the person who has suffered.

You are able to make a claim as a secondary victim, and if you wish to do so, please use our contact information at the end of this guide to get in touch for more details about these psychological injury claims.

Payouts For Psychological Injury Claims

You may be wondering how much compensation you can get for a psychological injury. In addition to the figures in the table below (which are known as general damages), you could also be awarded a settlement for any financial issues that your psychological injury may have caused.

To put it another way, a mental health compensation payout could address certain expenditures that can be proven to have taken place due to your injuries. This means that if you have had to spend any money, or have lost money in another way due to your injuries, you could claim these back if you have sufficient evidence. Receipts are a good example of this.

These additional expenses are known as special damages. We’ve included some examples just below.

Loss of earnings – Depression compensation payouts could take a loss of earnings into account. Mental health disorders such as anxiety and depression can lead to difficulty in being able to work. Therefore, if the condition has been brought on by negligence, you may be able to claim back any earnings you lost out on during your absence from work.

Medical costs – This could include anti-depressant prescription costs..

Get in touch with us today if you have any questions regarding what your claim could be worth.

How Much Compensation Do You Get For a Psychological Injury?

If you’re wanting to claim for a psychological injury, it’s important to remember that there are many factors that can determine your potential compensation. Aspects that can affect your compensation include:

  • The severity of your injury
  • Whether the injury is permanent or long-term
  • How badly the injury has negatively impacted your life

The figures from the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) could provide you with a better idea of what you could receive from a psychological injury claim. Lawyers and solicitors use these guidelines to provide compensation quotations. However, please bear in mind that the figures below are just guidelines as every claim is unique. Also, these figures are only relevant to claims in England and Wales and have been taken from the latest guidelines that were published, in 2022.

Injury TypeTypical Award BracketDescription
Severe psychiatric damage£54,830 to £115,730In these cases the injured person will have marked problems with respect to their ability to cope with life, education and work and relationships with family and friends. The prognosis will be very poor.
Moderately severe psychiatric damage£19,070 to £54,830In these cases there will be significant problems associated with factors mentioned above but the prognosis will be much more optimistic than in the bracket above.
Moderate psychiatric damage£5,860 to £19,070While there may have been the sort of problems associated with factors mentioned above, there will have been marked improvement by trial and the prognosis will be good.
Less severe psychiatric damage£1,540 to £5,860The level of the award will take into consideration the length of the period of disability and the extent to which daily activities and sleep were affected.
Severe PTSD£59,860 to £100,670In these cases, PTSD will prevent the injured person from working at all or at least from functioning at anything approaching the pre-trauma level.
Moderately severe PTSD£23,150 to £59,860The effects are still likely to cause significant disability for the foreseeable future, however, the prognosis for some recovery with professional help will be better than in the above bracket.
Moderate PTSD£8,180 to £23,150The injured person will have largely recovered and any continuing effects will not be grossly disabling.
Less severe PTSD£3,950 to £8,180A virtually full recovery will have been made within one to two years and only minor symptoms will persist
Mental anguish £4,670Fear of impending death/reduction in expectation of life.

You may want to use a mental health compensation calculator to see what you could receive. While it may give you a general idea of your potential compensation, our advisors will be able to give you a quote that specifically relates to your claim.

In just one phone call, they can tell you if you’re eligible to claim, provide a quote and connect you with one of our solicitors who could help you receive compensation. Please contact us at a time that works for you using the details above.

No Win No Fee psychological injury claims

When you are claiming psychological injury, it is imperative to choose a solicitor with care. One of the most important things you need to do is make sure that the solicitor works on a No Win No Fee basis. You can be certain of this when you work with Legal Expert because all of our claims are 100% No Win No Fee. This means that you won’t pay solicitor fees if your claim is unsuccessful.

Neither will you need to pay an upfront cost often needed for a solicitor to start working on your case. You also won’t need to pay ongoing costs that often incur while claims proceed, such as medical fees.

If your case is successful and you have been awarded compensation, you will pay a success fee that’s capped by law and is taken as a percentage from your settlement. You will be made aware of this before you begin working with a solicitor on this basis.

The legal fees you pay will come from your compensation. Basically, you will have already agreed on a percentage of the compensation that will be payable to your lawyer for the services provided. This provides you with financial security because you know that you are never going to be in the position where you have a legal bill to fund yet no compensation.

Why call us for assistance for psychological injury claims?

While there may be many legal firms to choose from in the United Kingdom today, you will struggle to find a better service than the one provided by us. We have years of experience in the industry, and we always treat our customers well. We have handled many psychological injury claims before, and it is always our aim to secure the maximum compensation amount.

Beginning your psychological injury claim

If you are ready to make a claim, all you need to do is get in touch with us. There are a number of ways you can do so.

You can call our personal injury claims line on 0800 073 8804. This line is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Alternatively, we also have a live chat feature on our website, or you can click here and enquire online.

We look forward to speaking with you.

Helpful links

Car Accident Claims and Advice

Find out how much compensation you can claim after a car accident.

Assault Compensation Claims

If you have been the victim of an assault find out if you can claim compensation

Rape Victim Compensation Claims

Find out how much compensation you could claim for rape in the UK

Victim support Link

This link provides information on what you can do if you have been the victim of a crime as well as the financial compensation you may receive.

What rights do I have after crime?

This link takes you to the UK Government website so you can understand your rights after a crime.

Other personal injury claims guides:

Other guides you may find useful:

‘How much compensation for psychological injury?’ and related FAQs

Can I claim for psychological damage at work?

Yes. If you can show that you’ve suffered from psychological injury because your employer was negligent in some way, you may be able to claim compensation.

Can I claim for psychiatric damage from the NHS?

Yes. In some cases, such as birth injuries, medical negligence can be the cause of psychiatric injuries. In these cases, you may be able to claim.

How much compensation can you get for emotional distress?

This depends on your individual circumstances. Your compensation award will be determined by the effect that your injury has had on your quality of life.

How do you prove psychological injury?

If you think you have suffered a psychological injury and it’s affecting your quality of life, you should seek medical attention. Not only will this ensure that there’s a record of your injuries to strengthen your claim, but it will make sure that you get the treatment you need.

Can I claim for psychological injury caused by assault?

It is possible to claim compensation for emotional trauma caused by criminal acts. The compensation will be paid by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.

What do general damages cover for psychological injuries?

General damages for psychological injuries, like for any other injuries, cover the pain and suffering you experience. It will be based on the extent to which your injuries affect your quality of life, and for how long.

What do special damages cover for psychological injuries?

Special damages for psychological injuries will cover things like any loss of earnings, payment for medication or treatments or care costs. You should keep proof of anything you’ve paid for in order for it to be included in your claim.

How long will a psychological injury claim take to be settled?

Claims with different levels of complexity or disputes over liability will vary in the amount of time they take to be settled. Rest assured that we’ll keep you in the loop at every stage of your claim.

What are compensation claims for a psychological injury?

In some accidents, you may sustain psychological damage as well as physical injuries. In these cases, you could claim compensation for the harm you sustained as a result of someone else’s negligence. Medical evidence may be used to assess the severity of your injuries when valuing your claim.

Can you claim for a psychological injury?

If your claim meets the three criteria of negligence, you may be eligible to seek compensation for a psychological injury. Negligence may have occurred if someone owed you a duty of care, failed to uphold the duty of care they owed and caused you to sustain physical or psychological harm as a result.

How do you prove a psychological injury in personal injury claims demonstrated negligence?

When putting forward a personal injury claim for a psychological injury, you will need to gather relevant evidence to support your case. This might include medical reports, accident reports or witness contact details. Additionally, you may be invited to attend a medical appointment that’s completed independently. The appointment can provide a current report on the full extent of the harm you sustained.

If you choose to hire legal representation, a solicitor could arrange for you to attend this appointment in your local area. Our solicitors have experience with the personal injury claims process and could help you obtain relevant evidence to support your case. Call our team for more information about whether our solicitors could represent your claim.

Thank you for reading our guide, which addresses the question of “how much compensation can be claimed in psychological injury claims?”.

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