Can I Recover for the Psychological Injuries From a Dog Bite?
Physical scars can heal even if the injuries to a body may require stiches or antibiotics, but the emotional scarring from some dog bite injuries may be a little more lasting and come with a difficult recovery process.
What are Psychological Injuries?
Reports indicate that nearly all dog bite victims suffer a degree of psychological injury.1 The emotional distress or anguish caused by a dog bite can create bouts of anxiety when a flashback occurs, nightmares, a lasting fear of dogs, insomnia, depression, irritability, anti-social behavior, nervousness about being outside, and other symptoms associated with post-traumatic stress disorder.2 The most common symptom associated with post-traumatic stress disorder is the fear of a reoccurring encounter or attack that will result in serious injury or death; the severity of an injury combined with the presence of post-traumatic stress disorder can make a person constantly on edge or overly alert.3
What Type of Recovery Can You Receive?
Compensation can be received for both the physical and psychological injuries. The physical injury compensation can include recover for medical treatments, hospitalization, or lost wages. The psychological injury will be calculated as compensation for pain and suffering. The emotional distress damages are intended to function as a monetary compensation for the effect the psychological injury has on your daily life.4 By its very nature, emotional distress damages are very subjective, but having a successful claim for mental anguish can be improved by medically documenting the symptoms of the psychological injury, keeping personal records or journals on how your life has been affected by the dog bite injury, and any other evidence of the severity of the emotional distress.5 Despite the fact that Missouri is a strict liability state which means that dog owners are liable regardless of proving culpability, recovering compensation for psychological injury can still be a complex matter due to the existence of statute of limitations and damage caps. This means that seeking medical attention for both physical and psychological injuries as well as legal assistance for compensation are all time sensitive elements involved with the process of recovering from a dog bite injury.
Contact an Experienced St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer for a Free Consultation
If you have suffered a dog but and continue to have psychological injuries, it is important to discuss the circumstances of the injury with an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you to determine what claims should be filed and protect your legal rights and interests. To contact an auto accident attorney for a free consultation please feel free to call the The Bruning Law Firm trial attorneys at 314-735-8100.