The Mental Health Aspect of Settlement Negotiations
Large million dollar awards for pain and suffering make splashy news headlines, but do not reflect the reality of most settlement awards for mental health harm. You should consult with an Orange County personal injury attorney to get an idea of the particular mental health damages that courts have awarded in cases similar to yours. However, even very experienced personal injury attorneys have difficulty projecting accurate monetary awards for pain and suffering in cases. It is important to brace yourself that recovering large monetary damages for mental health injuries is an extremely variable aspect of your case and only happens in small minority of cases.
Like all other aspects of your case, the more prepared you are, the better chance you have to obtain damages for mental injuries. It is a good idea to have all evidence of your mental health injuries gathered and ready for settlement negotiations. Allow an Orange County personal injury attorney to advise you as to the particular types of documents and reports that would be useful to support the injury claims in your case. The more prepared you are with documents and reports that support your claims, the better the settlement that is likely to be negotiated. Understand that the value you may think your mental health injuries are worth may not be what an insurance company or party is willing to pay. Awards are typically based on other average court awards and other settlements.
Know that if your case goes to trial, a jury, made up of untrained professionals who do not know you, will be deciding your case. It can be a high-risk proposition to allow a jury to decide mental health damages, as some people are uncomfortable making large awards for emotional pain and injury. Mental health injuries are simply more difficult to prove or substantiate than physical injuries. Jury members can look to x-rays and other tangible sources to establish that a person was physically injured, but mental health injuries are based on less concrete, and arguably more disputable, sources.
Mental health damages are particularly difficult to assess and often a frustrating topic of discussion between clients and attorneys. However, working cooperatively with your attorney to help prepare for good settlement negotiations is a good strategy.
Call experienced Orange County personal injury attorney Samer Habbas at (888) 848-5084 today for a free case evaluation.