Mental Anguish


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

Mental Anguish

When connected with a physical injury, includes both the resultant mental sensation of pain and also the accompanying feelings of distress, fright, and anxiety. As an element of damages implies a relatively high degree of mental pain and distress; it is more than mere disappointment, anger, worry, resentment, or embarrassment, although it may include all of these, and it includes mental sensation of pain resulting from such painful emotions as grief, severe disappointment, indignation, wounded pride, shame, despair, and/or public humiliation. In other connections, and as a ground for Divorce or for compensable damages or an element of damages, it includes the mental suffering resulting from the excitation of the more poignant and painful emotions, such as grief, severe disappointment, indignation, wounded pride, shame, public humiliation, despair, etc.

mental anguish

n. mental suffering which includes fright, feelings of distress, anxiety, depression, grief and/or psychosomatic physical symptoms. It is distinguished from physical pain due to an injury, but it may be considered in awarding damages for physical injury due to a defendant's negligence or intentionally inflicting harm. Where there is no physical injury damages can still be awarded for mental anguish if it is reasonable to presume such would naturally flow from the incident. Examples: holding a pistol to one's head, any threat of bodily harm when it appears it could be carried out, swinging with a scythe even though the assailant missed, or witnessing injury or death to a loved one. There are also situations in which the obvious result of the alleged wrongdoing would be mental distress due to embarrassment or reputation through libel, and therefore damages can be awarded to the distressed party. However, there are limits: in general, breach of contract judgments cannot include damages for mental anguish due to the loss of a deal or employment. But then there is the case of the shop which failed to deliver the bridal gown in time for the wedding---mental anguish flows naturally (along with the bride's tears) from such a breach. (See: damages, mental suffering)

References in periodicals archive ?
In each of these cases, the per curiam opinions set forth a cut-and-dry rule: If a plaintiff brings a claim for mental anguish, his or her psychological records are relevant and must be disclosed to the defendant.
Accordingly, awards for emotional distress, mental anguish or loss of reputation (i.
The film made them the object of 'ridicule, humiliation, mental anguish and emotional and physical distress, loss of reputation, goodwill and standing in the community,' the papers stated.
Written from the perspective of one of the five main characters, Maggie's chapters are full of mental anguish and bizarre - sometimes difficult to follow - occurrences.
All you have to do is show that you are suffering physical pain or mental anguish to qualify.
If people are having any kind of physical or mental anguish with their game, they've got to give us a try.
104(a)(2), which only excludes from gross income non-punitive damages for personal physical injuries or sickness, is unconstitutional as applied to damages for emotional distress or mental anguish and injury to professional reputation because these damages were unrelated to lost wages or earnings, or for diminished earning capacity or otherwise in lieu of income.
When this incident went to trial, both the criminal and civil courts decided that Herpolsheimer had acted in self-defense, the result being that Herpolsheimer won a counterclaim against McGinley for "battery and trespassing" and "pain, suffering and mental anguish.
He said he didn't want to harm her physically, but he was aware of the mental anguish he was causing.
Since his friend's suicide, Bowen's life has been a roller coaster of mental anguish and homelessness.
1m) in damages, which is a combination of his lost pay as a supermarket produce manager, mental anguish, loss of companionship and punitive damages.
And at least ( through poverty ( we don't have the mental anguish that is airports, aeroplanes and hyper children.