nervous shock


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

nervous shock

a phrase used to describe a certain class of claim, usually in negligence, where the plaintiff is not injured in the sense of a physical injury. It is not strictly speaking a medical term but now marks out a certain set of perplexing legal cases where a plaintiff has not suffered direct physical injury, for example, being run down. Instead, the plaintiff claims to have been so affected by the incident in question that he suffers from a recognized medical condition as a result. The ‘floodgates’ fear that there would be an army of lying plaintiffs and crooked lawyers and dubious psychiatrists resulted in a strict approach to recovery, demanding that the plaintiff had to be at or about the scene of the incident that caused the shock. The position has now been reached where nervous shock, mental illness or post-traumatic stress disorder may found a claim if the claimant is a primary victim or alternatively is a secondary victim and can pass the control tests developed in the cases. An example of a primary victim is a person whose ME flared up after being in a minor collision in which he was not physically injured. Secondary cases are where the claimant sees another being injured and the controls operate around three categories which are under review by the Law Commissions:
  1. (1) the relationship of the parties;
  2. (2) the means of perception should be unaided senses; things seen on television are unlikely to trigger recovery, still less a written report;
  3. (3) plaintiffs to be successful should be at or near the scene or at least its aftermath.
References in periodicals archive ?
Charles Cory-Wright QC, for the Trust, told the court that nervous shock victims are normally only awarded compensation if it can be proved that the sudden witnessing of a traumatic event, at first hand, led to a psychiatric injury.
Any time you foul on the your first attempt, you get a nervous shock," he said.
Locals, some of whom scorned and hit Oweid, said the young man takes Artane pills every day, paid for by Fatah, and blamed his condition on nervous shock from when Israel bombed the camp during the Civil War in the 1980s.
He does not consider the slow decline yet dogged persistence of Galenist/humoral theory (positing that too much evacuation or accumulation of semen was pathogenic), nor the rise of an alternative in nerve force theory, holding that nervous energy should not be squandered and that any nervous shock or drain, such as that experienced in orgasm, was the real cause of illness.
A bullied employee could sue you for intentional infliction of nervous shock.
She said the attack caused "severe nervous shock and mental anguish, great physical pain and emotional upset".
43) 1866 saw the landmark publication of John Eric Erichsen's On Railway and Other Injuries of the Nervous System in which he established the notion of nervous shock, a condition remarkable for the disjunction between an accident to the body and its effects.
The woman claimed she suffered permanent injury to her jaw, had headaches and suffered nervous shock.
The 35-year-old has taken a case against the South Dublin hospital for nervous shock over the error in 2010.