Can a Person Have PTSD After an Automobile Accident?

Most drivers will be involved in some form of accident in their lifetime. However, those in severe accidents that result in catastrophic injuries might suffer long-term effects from that incident. Annually, more than 3.5 million people are injured in motor vehicle accidents each year, and more than 42,000 die from those incidents. From the depression to the anxiety, there are numerous emotional responses that a person might have after their accident. However, a person is also at an increased risk for psychological problems, especially post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), says a recent study.

Proving PTSD After a Catastrophic Injury

After a traumatic incident, if you have PTSD, you may receive compensation for not only the physical injuries but PTSD and how it affects your quality of life.

PTSD is a very complex disorder. Often it goes undiagnosed for months or years, which means some plaintiffs never have the chance to seek compensation for it. If diagnosed within the two-year statute of limitations, and you have not accepted a settlement, you might be eligible to add PTSD compensation to your physical injury claim.

Proving PTSD is very complex. In this instance, you need an expert to testify to your condition, but also provide fact witnesses that show your PTSD is real and the direct result of your catastrophic injury.

The Importance of Expert Witnesses and Fact Witnesses

The expert witness is typically your mental health care provider. This person testifies that you have PTSD, your symptoms, prognosis, and treatment required to help you cope with the trauma.

The fact witness is someone who backs up the claims of your expert witness. They testify to their qualifications and testify about the facts that must be proven to establish your PTSD is real.

The Qualifications for a PTSD Diagnosis

Furthermore, your attorney will need to demonstrate that you meet the criteria for PTSD. The diagnosis criteria for PTSD varies, but most physicians follow the diagnostic standards in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5; 1) created by the American Psychiatric Association.

Do You Have PTSD from a Catastrophic Injury? Contact an Attorney

If you have suffered PTSD from a catastrophic injury or accident, speak with an attorney from Udall Shumway, PLC.

Our attorneys understand how emotionally traumatizing an accident can be, and we know how that trauma can affect you the rest of your life. Let our advocates seek compensation for your physical, emotional, and mental injuries today.

This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding PTSD, or any other personal injury, please feel free to contact Brian T. Allen at  480.461.5335,  log on to,  or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.