On Handling High-Emotion Injury Cases

Lawyer comforting emotionally distressed client

If you are a personal injury lawyer handling catastrophic injury or death cases, you’ll face your fair share of emotionally difficult cases. These cases can present many emotionally draining experiences, but they also have many opportunities to inspire. I recently had one of these experiences where I was filled with both grief and inspiration at the same time.

My client, who lost his two-year-old son right before his eyes, was prepared for his deposition. I am constantly amazed at the courage my clients demonstrate as they deal with some of the most unimaginable tragedies, yet they manage to put one foot in front of the other to do what is required to get justice for their loved ones and move forward with their lives.

I had the privilege of sitting next to this father as his lawyer, as he gave his deposition in his son’s wrongful death case. My heart hurt for the two-year-old little boy who was killed, and for my client as well, who has overcome a lot of adversity to try to put the pieces of his life back together.

If you handle serious injury and wrongful death cases, it is very important that you protect your mental health. Some of the things you see are absolutely sad, tragic, terrifying, gruesome, and depressing. You also have the pressure of the case on your shoulders.

If you don’t take care of yourself then you can’t take care of others. And eventually, the weight of what you encounter in your daily practice will catch up with you.

When I handle emotionally difficult cases like this one, I set aside extra time in the morning to work out and then, after the deposition, I don’t always return to work. In this case, instead of going back to work after the deposition, I went on a run for thirty minutes.

Be sure that you are proactive in handling the stress, anxieties, and emotions of your work and be in tune with your own mental well-being. This will help you show up for your clients, even on the most difficult days.

Days like this consistently remind me of what is most important in life. It isn’t money or material things. It is human connection, experiences, and taking whatever positive action we can to help others.

These days also teach me how amazing and beautiful life is. While this incredible tragedy happened, getting to immerse myself in my client’s life, learn about what a wonderful child his son was, and experience the love and joy he felt for his son, is truly a gift.

I can’t think of anything that I’d rather do in my life than help people like this.

How do you handle highly emotional cases? Join the conversation with me on LinkedIn.

About the Author

Darl Champion is an award-winning personal injury lawyer serving the greater Metro Atlanta area. He is passionate about ensuring his clients are fully compensated when they are harmed by someone’s negligence. Learn more about Darl here.