Accidents can lead to all sorts of complications, and in some cases can cause a catastrophic injury. Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) are a known side effect of accidents. Having legal representation that can help an injured person deal with their problems is essential. However, not all accident attorneys are skilled enough to undertake a brain injury case. Experienced injury lawyers who understand the nuances of a brain injury case can be especially helpful.
Most motor vehicle accident lawyers will offer you a free consultation where you can discuss the matter with them directly. However, if you have a traumatic brain injury, you probably have other concerns. From your medical bills to the long-term effects of a TBI on your standard of living – each of these impacts how you deal with your everyday life. Before we look at what a brain injury lawyer can do for you, let’s first examine traumatic brain injuries in more detail to learn what they are and how they can impact your life over the long term.
What are Traumatic Brain Injuries
The CDC notes that a TBI is any injury that affects the basic processes of how the brain functions. Traumatic brain injuries are a significant cause of death in the United States. TBIs may be due to things like a massive hit or blow to the head or any wound that penetrates the skull. Insurance companies typically handle TBIs as part of the personal injury protection coverage that they offer to clients. Even so, if someone is involved in a car accident, there’s no telling the extent of damage a TBI could cause to them.
TBIs are part of a broad group of accident injuries. This type of injury could leave a person suffering from pain for a long time, not to mention losing function of their autonomous system or their reflex system. The biggest problem these injuries present is that they can lead to either short of long-term injuries. A person who has a short-term TBI might feel dizzy for a bit and even lost consciousness, but feel better after a short time. Long-term effects may not even present until many months after the initial incident that caused the problem. If the TBI happens during childhood, it could lead to long-term developmental issues. When these situations arise the best thing would be the seek the advice of a trained attorney.
You can let us handle the details of your brain injury case while you work on rebuilding your life.
Is There Such a Thing As a Brain Injury Attorney?
Attorneys who specialize in brain injury cases are rare, but not unheard of. Many of them operate just like personal injury attorneys, with a contingency fee basis built into their consultation and the first visit free to new clients. They can help a client work their way through the legal process and seek out a settlement that would help them to meet their obligations. Costs such as medical expenses and the cost of hiring a lawyer may be included in these overall costs of bringing the matter to court.
If you’re making an accident claim, you will need to figure out who the responsible parties are. The police report can prove to be a useful resource to determine who should be the at-fault party in an accident claim. Quite often, a plaintiff may have a case that encompasses other types of damages. Injury attorneys can handle a wrongful death lawsuit just as easily as they could handle any other personal injury lawsuit. The aim of a TBI lawyer is to ensure that clients receive fair compensation for their damages.
Depending on where you are located, your lawyer may have to look at specifics regarding the laws in that state. In some states, the comparative fault rule applies. This rule limits the amount of financial compensation a person can receive as the result of a settlement for an accident claim. Insurance companies in particular enjoy utilizing this rule as a way to avoid paying their fair share of damages for a personal injury case.
When a lawyer is representing you in a case, they will try to prove negligence. The term negligence means that the at-fault party had a duty of care and by negligent action, decided not to uphold that duty. The result was your injuries, in this case a TBI. Getting the evidence to prove this relies on several sources, including expert witnesses such as a medical professional that may have dealt with your case or police officers taking the report. Personal injury attorneys will typically go above and beyond the call to find out what happened regarding your injuries and how the at-fault person was involved in causing them.
How Can a Brain Injury Attorney Help?
Our law firm will take the time to verify the particulars of your case and seek your best interests in the settlement process. The most experienced attorneys will have dealt with both defendants and the insurance companies that represent them. Your bodily injury claims, the hospital bills associated with the claim and other surrounding issues like spinal cord injuries that might compound your pain and suffering all matter to resolving this case in your favor.
On your first visit, you might be required to answer a few questions regarding your background and any medical care you might have gotten for the injury. Every injury, from your TBI to spinal cord injuries and even scratches and bruises all count towards the damages that the defendant may have caused. We will take these under consideration and decide whether you have a good enough case to go to trial for.
Your attorney will most likely consider sending a letter to the insurance company or the defendant themselves. A demand letter is a standard procedure for any personal injury claim. In most cases the defendant or their insurer will try to settle out of court. Accident settlements tend to take into account a lot of factors in order to determine what counts as fair compensation.
What Kind of Settlement can a Personal Injury Claim Get for a Traumatic Brain Injury?
Due to the serious nature of brain injuries, the expenses that come with their treatment, care, and recovery can be extensive. After we establish who is at fault for your accident, we will be able to begin computing what we expect your claim to be worth so you can walk away with maximum compensation.
Every TBI is unique in that the ways your life will be affected can correspond with which areas of the brain were injured in the accident. The damages that New Orleans brain injury victims seek, however, are often very similar. Taking into account the recommendations of your physician, we consider the following damages in our initial calculations of the value of your claim:
- Loss of income
- Lost future earnings
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of companionship and love
- Hospital bills
- Home healthcare
- Medical equipment
- Costs of prescription medications
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Transportation costs to and from doctor visits
- Adjustments to your home to accommodate medical equipment
In a settlement, the injured party can make a claim for damages that would take into account all the factors that are currently impacting them. A property damage claim, for example, might come into account if someone was smashed in the accident that was of some value. Insurance adjusters that represent the defendant may inspect the scene of the crash and both vehicles. Their suggestion will form the basis of the defendant’s offer. The physical damages to both vehicles will also be used to calculate the damage in excess of the defendant’s coverage. Additional damages for psychological wounds may come into play here as well.
If there is an agreement to settle out of court, the defendant’s insurance company will try to settle it for as little as possible. One of the tactics they may try include lowballing the injured party. By getting them to settle for a lower value, they renege any claim the person may have on damages later on. Settlement would also mean the end of the accident insurance claim. However, this plot ensures that the injured party cannot bring a suit against the defendant or the insurer in the future. Your personal injury lawyers will be wise to this kind of trick and will warn you against accepting their offer. If discussion between the lawyers and the insurers break down, the case will go to court. Many times, the insurer will try to prevent this happening, but occasionally, they believe that they will win and let the matter be settled at trial.
Trial settlements ensure that a court is involved in remediation. The judge will hear the case from both parties and render a verdict based on the facts presented. Evidence such as the report from the police, testimony by expert witnesses and medical records about your head injury will all come into play. The final settlement that the judge will offer will be based on several factors. Injury can lead to loss of enjoyment of life and even loss of income because you won’t be able to work. The judge may see fit to grant you damaged based on these criteria.
A fair settlement may also take into account things like medical costs and the long-term medical bills you may have to keep paying for chronic injuries. Out-of-pocket costs such as traveling and repairs to a vehicle or rehabilitative treatment may also count, as the court may require the guilty party to reimburse the plaintiff. Property damage may also factor into the equation if the plaintiff’s holdings were part of the accident. The judge may also levy punitive damages on the guilty party. Punitive damages are used to make an example of someone who caused an accident due to their negligence. For example, if someone caused the accident due to their aggressive driving or distracted driving, these damages would warn others off from copying their behavior. The maximum compensation you collect from these settlements should be enough to pay for both your current and long-term medical care.
Choosing the Right Personal Injury Lawyer
Not every injury lawyer is the same. If you’re involved in an accident claim for a TBI, it may be necessary to seek out a lawyer with extensive experience within the field. The lawyers at Wright Gray have decades of experience dealing with brain injury injury settlements. Give us a call today and let’s help you seek fair compensation for your injuries.
Give a New Orleans brain injury lawyer a call at 888-912-4944 or contact us through the convenient contact form to schedule your free case assessment today.
Contact a New Orleans Brain Injury Attorney
When you’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury at the hands of a negligent party and aren’t sure how to move forward with seeking the compensation you’ll need to recover, connect with an experienced attorney at Wright Gray. We can help you understand the process, and we can help you win.