There is a tendency for the wider population to perceive psychological or psychiatric injury as less damaging and impactful than physical trauma. Having worked in this field for over three decades, helping injured clients bring claims against at-fault parties, we have seen that nothing could be further from the truth. Often psychiatric injuries go unnoticed or undiagnosed for some time, which further exacerbates their impact on the individual.
In general, psychiatric injuries occur as a direct result of trauma or stress. In either case, the injury may develop over a prolonged period or could be in direct response to a sudden and catastrophic event.
We often see psychiatric injury in workplace settings as a result of insufficient training, support, overwork, and being placed into contexts for which the individual is not able or ready to cope. In some cases, psychiatric injury can occur over time as a result of workplace harassment and bullying.
Psychiatric injury is often suffered by those who have observed incidents such as serious accidents or abuse, perhaps while carrying out professional duties, or in relation to colleagues, family members, or loved ones. In such cases, the individual is referred to as a ‘secondary victim’. If you are directly involved in the events which have triggered the psychiatric injury, then you are considered a ‘primary victim’.
Whether you are a primary or secondary victim, Lavelle Partners have the understanding, legal expertise, and empathetic approach needed to represent you. We will work tirelessly to get to the bottom of the reason for your psychiatric injury and to determine if this was due to the negligence of another party. Our role is to gather the evidence necessary to support your claim. Importantly, our team of psychiatric injury solicitors are extremely empathetic and will take the time to support you and your family as much as possible throughout the process.
What type of psychiatric injury can I claim for?
You may be able to make a claim for any psychiatric injury which was due to the negligence of another person, business, or organisation, which has caused you to suffer and incur losses; these may include:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Depressive episodes
- Anxiety disorder
- Chronic pain
- Traumatic brain injury
- Nervous shock
If you are yet to be given a formal diagnosis of a psychological or psychiatric injury or are yet to be assessed by a physician, it is important to do so as soon as possible. Ask to be referred to a specialist by your GP if you believe you have any form of psychiatric injury.
Who is liable for my psychiatric Injury?
Psychiatric injury can be caused by accidents due to negligence in a range of contexts including (but not limited to):
- Educational establishments
- Public facilities
- Road traffic accidents
- Healthcare settings
- Military facilities
- Supermarkets or other retail establishments
- Construction sites
Regardless of where the injury occurred, it will be necessary to establish who is at fault for the accident which led to the psychiatric injury. Depending on the situation, this may be a local authority, public entity, building contractor, employer, a private company, or an individual.
Do I have grounds for a psychiatric injury claim?
To bring a claim against a negligent party for your injuries, it will be necessary to prove:
- The party owed you a duty of care – if you were not owed a duty of care, no claim can be brought, and;
- The duty of care was breached, and;
- The breach of care led to psychiatric injury.
This means that in some contexts, it may not be possible to make a claim because there is a lack of proof that negligence occurred. One of our primary roles will be to establish if there are grounds for a claim and if so, to create a compelling case that proves the other party held legal culpability which they breached, leading to your injury.
If you are unsure if the circumstances of your psychiatric injury are grounds for a claim, please contact one of our psychiatric injury solicitors today who will take the time to listen to the details of your case and advise you of your legal options.
What may a claim for psychiatric injury cover?
Claims following psychiatric injury due to negligence may cover two areas of loss:
- Pain and suffering due to the injury; and
- Specific costs resulting from the injury caused. This may cover costs already incurred, such as transport, accommodation, and medical treatment, and expected future expenses, such as psychiatric therapy and care costs.
The costs you receive will be based on the precise injuries suffered and the circumstances of the case.
How Lavelle Partners psychiatric injury solicitors can assist you in bringing a claim
- Lavelle Partners have successfully managed many cases of psychiatric injury caused by the negligence of another party.
- Our personal injury team, headed by partner, Avril Scally, who herself has over 15 years’ experience in personal injury claims, place client care at the centre of everything they do.
- From the first moment you speak to one of our solicitors, we will listen to your case carefully and with empathy and will only recommend advancing your case if we believe you have a valid case.
- We have both the legal expertise and understanding of the real-life challenges faced by individuals and their families following such events.
- Our solicitors will manage the process entirely on your behalf; compiling the information necessary for your case, including medical notes, and managing the submission of your personal injury claim.
By allowing us to handle your claim on your behalf, you can focus on what is most important – your recovery and care, or that of your family member or loved one.
For further information on making a claim for psychiatric Injury in Ireland, please contact Lavelle Partners in confidence on (01) 644 5800 or email Avril Scally at [email protected]