John R. Fuller P.C.

1736 Race Street
Denver, CO 80206

(303) 597-4500

Proving Emotional Distress Claims | Colorado Emotional Distress Lawyer

Sad and upset woman deep in thoughtA Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress (NIED) claim is a special kind of personal injury claim where a plaintiff seeks compensation for emotional distress, in the absence of a physical injury. These types of claims are relevant when someone has acted so carelessly that they are held liable for the plaintiff’s emotional injury. An experienced Colorado emotional distress lawyer may be able to help you prove your claim.

Fundamental Elements of Negligent Infliction Emotional Distress

Damages for psychological harm are part of the majority of personal injury claims. The distinctive quality of NIED claims, however, is that personal injury claims do not have to be a part of the lawsuit for a plaintiff to file a claim. An NIED claim is based on a defendant’s carelessness, or negligence. Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress has an entirely different set of circumstances. In addition to a defendant’s negligent actions, there are two other factors that necessitate a successful NIED claim. To bring validity to a NIED claim: 1. One of these three requirements must be applicable, depending on which state the claim was brought: – The Impact Rule, followed in only a few states, says that as a consequence of the defendant’s negligent act, something must have contacted or effected the plaintiff. That “something” can be as minor as a small rock or the percussive effect of a detonation, or – The Zone of Danger Rule is observed in more states. Limited almost entirely to emotional harm predicated by fear of injury, the zone of danger rule requires that the defendant’s negligent act took place in close enough proximity to the plaintiff that he or she was in immediate danger of physical harm, or – Followed in a majority of the states, The Foreseeability Rule is compulsory in all standard negligence cases. It stipulates that a defendant should have been reasonably able to anticipate that his or her actions could have been detrimental to the well-being of the plaintiff. 2. Emotional Harm Creating Physical Symptoms In addition to satisfying the requirements of one of the three previously-mentioned stipulations, most states also require that physical symptoms manifested as a result of the plaintiff’s extreme emotional harm. In addition to satisfying the requirements of one of the three previously-mentioned stipulations, most states also require that physical symptoms manifested as a result of the plaintiff’s extreme emotional harm.

Bystander Cases

In a bystander case, a close family member either witnesses or arrives on the scene directly following the accident where their relative was hurt or even killed as a result of the defendant’s negligent act. What differentiates a bystander case from other NIED cases is that the plaintiff was psychologically traumatized by seeing a loved one injured, rather than being the direct victim of the defendant’s negligence. For instance, in most states, if a mother witnesses her child being severely injured as the result of someone’s negligence, the foundation for a NIED case would have been laid.

Contact Our Denver Personal Injury Lawyers

Colorado Emotional Distress Lawyer John R. FullerIf you have suffered emotional injury after an accident, it is important to know that the law is on your side. It is not always easy to prove emotional distress after an accident, but an experienced Denver personal injury law firm can help. Contact the Denver Law Firm of John R. Fuller, P.C. today at 303-597-4500 for a free initial consultation.