Determining the Value of Damages for Emotional Distress

Irvine employment attorneyAccording to federal anti-discrimination laws, employees who have been subjected to workplace harassment are eligible for damages for emotional distress. However; there is no exact way for your Newport Beach employment law attorney to calculate the amount of damages for emotional distress because there is no particular mathematical or scientific formula for it. In order to figure out how much a jury might award for emotional distress, you might want to look at the following factors:

  • How likeable the defendant – your employer – is and how the jury may perceive the defendant
  • How credible and likeable the witnesses are
  • Your own credibility and how the jury may perceive you as a plaintiff
  • The extent to which the discrimination or harassment has interfered with your life
  • Your work history with the employer before the discrimination occurred
  • Whether there have been other sources of stress that the defense might argue contributed to or was the cause of the emotional distress you were feeling; for example, did you also go through marital difficulties, divorce, the death of a family member or some other stressful event in your personal life?
  • Whether there is a history of episodes of emotional distress
  • Whether there were physical manifestations of your emotional distress
  • The kind of emotional distress you suffered
  • Whether you sought medical attention or counseling for the emotional distress brought on by your employer’s discrimination or harassment
  • The extent of your employer’s discriminatory behavior and how solid your case is

If your emotional distress is severe, you might want to think about having your condition evaluated by a psychiatrist or counselor. By seeking treatment, you will create a medical record that can be used to support your claim for damages for emotional distress. A counselor or psychiatrist may also be able to confirm that your emotional distress was caused by workplace discrimination or harassment and not from outside factors. It is important to note that insurers and defendants are much less likely to pay more than the minimum settlement amount for emotional distress in cases for which plaintiffs have no documents – such as medical records – to support their claim.

Your Newport Beach employment law firm may have a relationship with an expert witness who can evaluate you and offer his or her professional testimony regarding your emotional distress. Testimony from an expert witness may help support your claim, either in mediation or at trial, should your case end up in litigation. To speak with an employment law attorney about your employment discrimination case, call Daily Aljian LLP, at 949-861-2524.

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