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Post-traumatic stress disorder compensation claims guide


Author: Colin Cook

Accidents and Injuries, Brain Injury

Comforting after PTSD

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder caused by very stressful, frightening or distressing events.

It’s PTSD Awareness Month, a campaign aimed at recognising this psychiatric disorder that can occur after a person experiences a traumatic or extremely stressful event. Classified as post-traumatic stress disorder if symptoms persist for more than a month, you may be entitled to compensation if caused due to no fault of your own.

What is PTSD?

PTSD or Post-traumatic stress disorder is a specific diagnosis of a psychiatric disorder after experiencing a seriously upsetting or stressful event that creates psychological trauma. PTSD can be caused due to several reasons whether from having a serious accident or even witnessing one. Emergency services, for example, have an increased likelihood of being exposed to a traumatic experience that can lead to the condition.

What are the symptoms of PTSD?

The symptoms of PTSD vary widely and the severity of them differs from case to case. Two people may witness the same traumatic event, however, one may experience completely different symptoms to the other.

Some of the more common symptoms of PTSD are:

  • Disturbing flashbacks
  • Frequent nightmares
  • Distressing memories
  • Emotional instability
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Irritability
  • Numbness
  • Extreme levels of stress and anxiety

Many people who file a PTSD compensation claim have had their lives completely disrupted by the condition. The impact of PTSD and other psychological injuries should not be underestimated as this can impact family life, social and recreational participation, work and day-to-day living. Psychological injury can also affect an individual’s ability to do their job and lead to financial loss.

How compensation can help a sufferer of PTSD

Following a diagnosis from a GP or a Consultant Psychiatrist, compensation for PTSD will consider the effect the condition has had on your life and ability to cope with work and family, as well as the predicted success of treatment, future vulnerability and prognosis. It can also be used to pay for treatments that may not be available to you on the NHS.

Causes of PTSD

There are many different causes that lead to PTSD compensation claims. Post-traumatic stress disorder can be caused by one single event or a series of recurring events.

These include:

  • Being a victim of physical abuse or violence
  • Being sexually assaulted or abused
  • Getting mugged or robbed
  • Receiving a diagnosis of a life-limiting condition or terminal illness
  • The sudden unexpected death of a loved one
  • Getting caught in a natural disaster
  • Witnessing or getting caught in the middle of a terror attack
  • Witnessing a terrible or violent death

The last two examples are often called secondary victim claim and there are special rules relating to these cases which seek to restrict the number of people who can make such claims. It is necessary to look at issues such as whether the incident was witnessed in person, how far away was it and what was the relationship between the victims. Other examples will include specific categories such as rescuers. Secondary victim claims are often resisted by insurance companies and so specialist advice in what can be a complicated area of law is essential.

Filing a claim

If you have been diagnosed with PTSD which was caused due to no fault of your own, you can start a compensation claim. Our experienced personal injury solicitors will make the entire process as simple and straightforward as they possibly can. If you would like to discuss a PTSD compensation claim on a No Win No Fee basis with a personal injury solicitor, please contact us today.

Colin Cook, Partner and Personal Injury specialist at Hatch Brenner Solicitors

Colin Cook, Partner and Personal Injury specialist at Hatch Brenner, has extensive experience in dealing with PTSD and secondary victim claims for personal injury clients, securing the compensation they are entitled to. Visit Colin's profile to read more about his experience and past cases.

Sara Westwood, Partner and Medical Negligence Expert at Hatch Brenner Solicitors in Norwich

Sara Westwood, Partner and Medical Negligence Expert at Hatch Brenner deals with all types of claim whether valued at £2,000.00 or £2,000,000.00 plus and has considerable experience in medical negligence PTSD and secondary victim claims.

If you would like further information about any service, call us on 01603 214220