Emotional distress claims attempt to address the damage cause by mental anguish. Beyond the emotional trauma caused immediately by the injury, the injured party can be distressed by changes in lifestyle the injury causes.
Such claims can be hard to prove as jurors are unable to see these injuries, as you can with broken bones and contusions. Generally, there needs to be outside evidence of the loss, such as from doctors or family members. A journal depicting daily symptoms can also be helpful.
Only in very specific cases does Texas law allow for the recovery of mental anguish damages without physical injury. These include:
- Bystander cases
- Child abduction
- Invasion of privacy
- Negligent handling of a corpse
- A telegraphy company failing to make a timely delivery of a death message
The anguish caused by these actions must be beyond simple disappointment, resentment, embarrassment or anger and are compensable.