Mental Anguish Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Mental Anguish, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is Mental Anguish?

(n) Mental Anguish is the mental suffering like fear, anxiety, depression, grief etc faced by a person during an event, period , action or situation. A person can claim damages for mental anguish if it was logically connected to the incident. Eg. Seeing the killing of a loved one.

History and Meaning of Mental Anguish

Mental anguish is a term that refers to a type of mental pain that a person may experience due to a traumatic event or stressful circumstance. It can manifest in various forms, such as fear, anxiety, depression, grief, and other associated emotions. The concept is typically used in legal situations where a person claims damages for mental suffering that they faced during the incident or due to the accused's actions.

Examples of Mental Anguish

  1. A victim of a violent crime suffers from PTSD and depression for months after the incident.
  2. A family member of a person that was wrongly imprisoned for years and later exonerated experiences severe emotional distress.
  3. A person that was discriminated against at work and suffered humiliation and damage to their reputation has lasting anxiety and mood changes.

Legal Terms Similar to Mental Anguish

  1. Emotional Distress: A term used interchangeably with mental anguish to describe the emotional pain and suffering that a person may experience.
  2. Pain and Suffering: A legal term similar to mental anguish that includes all physical and emotional pain, suffering, and distress associated with the injury.
  3. Trauma: A mental or emotional response to a distressing event or experience such as abuse, accidents, or natural disasters.