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Can you sue for emotional distress in employment discrimination?

Workers who have experienced employment discrimination in Texas often have income loss when their employer disregards their talents for promotion on merit increases. Another consequence that is just as serious and sometimes even more so is the emotional distress that results from discriminatory practices.

What emotional damages can become part of a discrimination lawsuit?

Several federal laws allow workers to sue their companies for employment discrimination. Those laws also allow plaintiffs to file a lawsuit for related emotional distress, generally emanating from sexual discrimination or a hostile work environment. To receive compensation for emotional distress, you must show that the employer’s actions caused it, not some other life event. Among the conditions that fall into this category are:

• Depression, anxiety or another diagnosed psychiatric disorder

• Insomnia

• Mental anguish and loss of enjoyment of life

• Reputational harm

• Strained relationships with family and friends

Although medical documentation is not necessary, it makes your case more substantial, especially when asking for considerable damages. Successful emotional distress lawsuits usually require at least one of the following:

• Testimony from the affected employee or family and friends about how the job has affected your well-being

• Testimony or documents from a medical professional or a counselor who has treated you

Making your mental health an issue

If you decide to claim emotional distress damages, your employer will try to prove that you experienced emotional problems before working at their company or show that your claims are exaggerated. Therefore, it’s in your best interests to gather as much evidence as possible to refute their claims.

Building a solid case is crucial in employment discrimination lawsuits involving emotional distress. In addition to personal testimony, you may also seek proof from past claims against the company that show a pattern of emotional distress resulting from discrimination.