Any injury can be life-changing, and even a seemingly minor injury can have a long-term impact on your life that you may not initially consider as you are focusing on recovery. Some types of injuries, though, are very clearly significant and disastrous from the moment they occur. These types of injuries are referred to as “catastrophic injuries,” and they are typically defined as any injury that keeps a person from being able to perform any type of gainful work. This type of impediment from gainful work could be something like a spine or neck injury, an amputation, a brain injury, or any other injury that leaves someone with a disability for the rest of their life.
If you have suffered from any type of injury caused by someone else’s negligence, catastrophic or not, then you are entitled to compensation for your suffering. Depending on the severity of the injuries and the extent of the impact that the injuries have on your day-to-day, your lifelong earning capacity, your general quality of life, and more, then the damages that you are entitled to come in a wide range of amounts. Typically, a victim will work directly with an insurance company after an accident in order to get compensated directly from the policy that the defendant is protected by, but whether or not this is the case, no personal injury case should be settled without a fight.
Hire an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer Today
One of the most effective ways to ensure that you are given the financial support that you deserve and are legally entitled to is by partnering with an experienced personal injury lawyer in San Diego as soon as possible. The team at Injury Trial Lawyers, APC has a history of successful cases where we have represented victims of a range of catastrophic injuries (as well as other types of injuries that are not considered “catastrophic”), and we will be happy to provide you with the same aggressive representation.
When you are being represented by a trustworthy, proven legal professional, whether you are filing an insurance claim or are seeking direct legal action against the responsible party, you can be certain of one thing: that you can focus on your own personal needs, such as getting your life back on track and adjusting to the impacts of your catastrophic injuries with confidence — there is a legal professional who is putting the work into your case that is going to give you the best chances as possible for a settlement you truly deserve.
Learn About Catastrophic Injuries Below
The following information is intended to provide you with a general understanding of catastrophic injuries and other serious types of injuries that deserve comprehensive and aggressive legal support so that you can get the money that you are entitled to. Read on to get an idea of some common terms, questions, and the process behind many personal injury cases.
Contact Injury Trial Lawyers, APC now to request a free case evaluation and to schedule an initial consultation so that we can go into greater detail about your situation and give you a better idea of how we can help. Our history of success should be a great indication to you about the level of care and support that you get when you partner with the team at Injury Trial Lawyers, APC as your San Diego personal injury attorneys.
Have You Suffered a Catastrophic Injury After an Accident?
Personal injury and tort law are intended to provide victims of injuries with financial compensation from the responsible party, or the insurance company that the defendant has a liability policy with. Regardless of who you are entitled to compensation from, the central fact is that you will need to advocate for yourself aggressively in order to get the money that you actually deserve.
Get What You Deserve
Insurance companies are extremely proficient at handling injury claims in a way that maximizes their own financial interests over the interests of the victim. Filing a claim is a fairly simple process, and even working with an insurance adjuster during their claim investigation can be straightforward, which is exactly what the insurance company wants. If a victim does not sense any resistance or difficulty in the filing process, they will be less likely to consider working with an attorney, and will, therefore, be easier to convince to accept a low settlement.
Personal injury attorneys in San Diego can help you from the moment you are injured before you even think about filing a claim with the insurance company. The sooner you partner with an experienced legal professional, the more opportunities you will have to ensure that each communication with the insurance company is done with experience and a goal of maximizing your settlement.
Types of Catastrophic Injuries
As you can imagine, defining an injury as “catastrophic” has more to do with the long-term impacts than it does with the actual type of injury itself. However, the following are some of the most common catastrophic injuries that victims of personal injury endure in San Diego. Whether or not you see an injury listed below that resembles your own, contact us as soon as possible in order to speak directly with our team and learn about the type of support that we can provide you during this difficult time.
If you are in an accident and either lose a limb in the accident or must have a limb removed in a medical procedure in response to the accident, these are both significant and life-changing situations leading to the loss of a limb or multiple limbs. Adjusting to life after losing a limb can be extremely difficult, and will certainly have an impact on your quality of life, your earning capacity, and possibly your ability to even return to your former work at all.
Spinal Cord Injuries
The spinal cord is an essential bundle of nerves running from the brain stem all the way through the entire body, allowing the brain to receive and transmit information to and from the body. When there is damage to the spinal cord and nerves are severed, the brain and body lose their ability to communicate along this pathway which can lead to things like paralysis, sensory loss, and more. Any type of spinal injury is extremely serious, and many are permanently debilitating.
Sensory loss can be an effect of a spinal cord injury, but there are many other types of injuries that can lead to some sort of sensory loss, such as loss of sight, smell, touch, taste, or hearing. Losing control over one or more of your senses will have a significant, lasting impact on your life, and whether or not this loss impacts your earning abilities, you deserve to be compensated for the long-term reality of this type of injury as it impacts your quality of life and more.
Paralysis is most commonly associated with spinal cord injuries, but there are many different ways that someone can suffer from paralysis, ranging from traumatic injuries to drug reactions and other sorts of neurological injuries. Regardless of the cause, paralysis is a serious and catastrophic injury that a victim deserves significant compensation for. Regardless of the type of paralyses, such as the area of the body or the number of limbs impacted, this type of injury has a major impact on a victim’s ability to live their life as they once could.
Brain injuries, like many other types of injuries, can be caused by traumas such as impacts to the head, skull fractures, or other violent accidents, but they can also be the result of things like oxygen loss, drug reactions and overdoses, illnesses, and more. A brain injury will have widespread and reaching impacts on both the victim and their loved ones, and the nature of the side effects can be diverse. Any type of brain injury requires extensive and immediate medical attention in order to hopefully limit the progression of the damage, if not reverse the damage.
Burns can range from minor irritations (first-degree burn) to complete charring and destruction of the body (third- and fourth-degree burns), and can cause significant and permanent damage including scarring, sensory loss, extreme disfiguration, and more. The skin is the largest organ that a human has, and is the first line of defense against things like infection, but when the skin is compromised and damaged, the victim is at a higher risk of exposure to dangerous infections, in addition to things like loss of mobility, constant pain, and more.
Personal Injury Damages For Catastrophic Injuries
On one hand, catastrophic injuries are treated like any type of injury in a tort case, meaning that the plaintiff and their legal team will seek compensation for any measurable impact that the injury has on the victim’s life; however, these types of injuries require additional calculation and expert advice in order to truly calculate the economic and non-economic impacts of these types of injuries, since they will likely affect the victim for the rest of their life.
The team at Injury Trial Lawyers, APC retains the expert support of a range of medical experts who will help us make sense of the severity of your injuries in purely legal terms. There is a necessity to be able to understand the long-term impacts of an injury that includes the economic impacts to your earning capacity, but also the long-term costs of things such as treatment for the injuries, services that you will require to accommodate the injuries, and more. An insurance company will never volunteer to pay for these types of damages, which is why we will rely on expert advice on how to calculate these costs.
Economic Damages For Catastrophic Injuries
The core of our case will revolve around the financial impacts of your catastrophic injuries, which include things like the medical costs of the necessary treatment, as well as the financial impact on your life due to loss of earning ability and more. The important thing to recall during the process of quantifying these damages is the fact that the impact will be long-term, meaning that we will need to project the financial impacts far beyond when we finally reach a settlement agreement or award in a trial.
Things like long-term disability, long-term medical support, lifestyle support services, and other costs will need to be considered, and we will need to calculate these over your lifetime. If you are attempting to settle directly with an insurance company without negotiations and without legal support, you can be certain that these long-term impacts will not be considered in the initial offer that the insurance company makes.
Non-Economic Damages For Catastrophic Injuries
Equally important, and even more difficult to calculate, are the non-economic impacts of a catastrophic injury. Non-economic damages include things like the pain and suffering of your injury, the emotional impacts that endure such as depression, anxiety, and sadness, and the general loss of quality in your life. In order to calculate these impacts, we will need to go through a range of calculations that consider both the short-term and the long-term impacts of the non-economic damages that you are, and will continue to, endure.
There are a variety of methods that San Diego personal injury lawyers utilize in order to calculate the actual dollar value of non-economic damage, but these calculations are complicated when we must consider the lifetime impacts of these damages, much the same as economic damages. As with the economic damages that we are seeking compensation for, we will need to work with outside experts and provide extensive proof of our justification for the damages that we are requesting.
In certain, rare cases, a victim may be awarded punitive damages from a judge or jury, although these damages are not anything that we will be able to seek ourselves. As the name suggests, these types of damages are meant to punish the responsible party for their egregious or reckless actions that led to your injuries. Punitive damages are awarded for the sole purpose of punishing the defendant and to dissuade others from engaging in this type of behavior in the future.
Since we are unable to request punitive damages, they will not be included in any of the calculations that we will present during negotiations. If we believe that your situation uniquely entitles you to punitive damages, it may make sense that we push for a trial. If that is the case, then you already have the advantage of working with a team of experienced trial lawyers with a history of success.