Find Out If You Qualify - Camp Lejeune Water Claim - Click Here
Request Your Free Consultation

personal injury hotline


Can You Get PTSD From a Motorcycle Accident?

Motorcycle accidents can be traumatic experiences that leave lasting impacts on those involved. One potential consequence of such accidents is the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Like a physical injury, the emotional damage after an accident may qualify for a settlement but often requires the help of a Richmond motorcycle accident lawyer.

The Pendleton Law Team serves throughout Virginia to help victims obtain pay for medical treatment, lost wages, emotional distress, and more. Read on to explore the relationship between motorcycle accidents and PTSD, understanding the symptoms, legal considerations in Virginia, and if hiring an attorney is the best option for your personal injury case.

What Is PTSD and How Does It Relate to Motorcycle Accidents?

PTSD, as defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), is a mental health condition that can occur after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event. Motorcycle accidents, with their unique characteristics, can indeed lead to the development of PTSD in individuals involved.

For a Free Legal Consultation
Call The Personal Injury Lawyer Hotline.

How Do Motorcycle Accidents Lead to PTSD?

Motorcycle accidents differ from other types of accidents due to the heightened vulnerability of motorcyclists. In Virginia, motorcyclists are required to adhere to specific laws and regulations, such as wearing helmets and following traffic rules. However, even with these precautions, motorcyclists are more exposed to the risk of severe injuries compared to occupants of other vehicles.

The sudden and violent nature of motorcycle accidents, combined with the lack of protective barriers, can result in significant physical and emotional trauma. The aftermath of a motorcycle accident often involves intense stress, fear, and feelings of helplessness. These factors contribute to the increased likelihood of developing PTSD in individuals who have experienced such accidents.

Let the Heavy Hitters® Take On Your Case 804-250-5050

How to Identify PTSD Symptoms After a Motorcycle Accident

After a motorcycle accident, individuals may experience a range of symptoms indicative of PTSD. These symptoms can manifest in various ways, and it is crucial to recognize and address them promptly. Some common symptoms of PTSD include:

  • Intrusive thoughts and flashbacks: Recurring and distressing memories of the accident may invade the individual’s thoughts, often accompanied by vivid and upsetting flashbacks.
  • Hypervigilance and heightened anxiety: The individual may become overly alert and anxious, constantly on edge, and easily startled. This hyperarousal can lead to sleep disturbances and difficulty concentrating.
  • Avoidance behaviors: To cope with the trauma, individuals may actively avoid reminders of the accident, such as avoiding riding motorcycles altogether or steering clear of locations associated with the crash.

If you or someone you know is experiencing symptoms of PTSD after a motorcycle accident, it is essential to work closely with medical professionals to find the most suitable treatment approach for individual needs.

Central Virginia's Top Rated Personal
Injury Lawyers 804-250-5050

What Impact Does PTSD Have on Personal Injury Claims?

In legal terms, PTSD can be considered a compensable injury if it can be established that the accident and subsequent PTSD were caused by the negligence or wrongful actions of another party.

Virginia follows a contributory negligence system, which means that if an injured party is found to have contributed in any way, even minimally, to the accident, they may be barred from recovering compensation. However, PTSD resulting from a motorcycle accident caused by another party’s negligence can still be considered in a personal injury claim.

Let Us Be The Heavy Hitters® For Your Case Speak To An Attorney Now

What Insurers Look for When Evaluating PTSD Claims

If you’ve experienced PTSD after a motorcycle collision and have opened a claim, insurance companies take various factors into account to assess the validity and severity of the condition. The following are typically considered when evaluating PTSD claims:

Medical Documentation

Insurers require comprehensive medical documentation to support the PTSD claim. This includes medical records, clinical assessments, and diagnostic reports from mental health professionals. The documentation should establish a clear link between the PTSD and the traumatic event, such as a motorcycle accident.

PTSD Diagnosis

A formal diagnosis of PTSD by a qualified mental health professional is crucial. The diagnosis should align with the criteria outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) to ensure it meets recognized standards.

Causal Connection

Insurers assess the causal connection between the motorcycle accident and the development of PTSD. They consider whether the accident was the primary cause of the PTSD or if there were pre-existing conditions or traumatic events that may have contributed to the development of the disorder.

Treatment Records

Insurers review the treatment records to determine if the claimant has sought appropriate and consistent treatment for PTSD. This includes therapy sessions, medication prescriptions, and compliance with the recommended treatment plan. Consistent treatment indicates the seriousness of the condition and the claimant’s efforts to mitigate its impact.

Impact on Functioning

Insurers evaluate how PTSD affects the claimant’s daily functioning, including work, relationships, and social activities. Documentation of impairments in these areas, such as employment records, testimonies from family and friends, and psychological evaluations, can strengthen the claim.

Duration and Persistence

The duration and persistence of PTSD symptoms also play a role in the evaluation. Insurers consider whether the symptoms have persisted for an extended period, typically beyond a few months, and if they have significantly affected the claimant’s life.

Expert Opinions

In complex cases, insurers may seek expert opinions from independent medical professionals or psychologists specializing in PTSD. These experts provide additional insights and assessments regarding the claimant’s condition, its severity, and the impact on their life.

Consistency of Information

Insurers review the consistency of information provided by the claimant throughout the claims process. Inconsistencies or discrepancies in the claimant’s statements, medical records, or reported symptoms may raise concerns and potentially affect the evaluation.

Supporting Evidence

Any additional evidence that supports the claim, such as witness testimonies, accident reports, or police records, can strengthen the case. This evidence helps establish a clear link between the motorcycle accident and the subsequent development of PTSD.

Can a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Help You Claim PTSD Damages?

Motorcycle accidents can have far-reaching consequences, including the potential development of PTSD. Aside from recognizing the symptoms and seeking appropriate treatment, you also deserve to be paid for the way it impacts your life. The legal knowledge of a qualified personal injury attorney can help you secure just compensation if you’ve gotten PTSD from a motorcycle wreck. 

Our skilled motorcycle accident lawyers serving Richmond and the surrounding areas can gather evidence that establishes the link between your motorcycle wreck and the development of PTSD. The Pendleton Law Team employs medical specialists or summons medical records, expert opinions, witness testimonies, and documentation of the accident scene. 

Contact us to understand the legal considerations surrounding personal injury claims involving PTSD and pursue rightful compensation with the successful “Heavy Hitters®” on your side. It all begins with a complimentary case evaluation.

The Pendleton Law Team Is Here For You 804-250-5050