Due to the complex nature of a brain injury, a brain injury lawsuit is also often complex. It can take months before you reach a settlement, and even longer if your case goes to trial. Meanwhile, you’ll need to focus on your recovery while navigating the ins and outs of the legal process.
Here’s what you need to know about brain injury lawsuits.
The Lawsuit’s Goal is to Make Your Life Whole Again
A brain injury can disrupt every aspect of your life. With more mild injuries, you might find that you only miss a few weeks of work, but in more severe cases, you might need to relearn basic skills and never get back to life as you once knew it.
The goal of a brain injury lawsuit is to award monetary damages to compensate for these “lost” parts of your life.
The Type of Damages You Receive Depend on How You Sustained Your Injury
There are many ways to sustain a brain injury, and as a result, there are a number of different ways another party can be held liable. The circumstances surrounding your injury will determine the cause of action you file in your brain injury lawsuit.
Common negligence can occur in countless scenarios, as it only requires that a person acted carelessly, and that carelessness resulted in your injury. For example, a distracted driver hitting a pedestrian would be considered common negligence if the pedestrian sustained an injury.
If you visit a shop and walk down an aisle with a deteriorated section of flooring and you trip, fall, and hit your head, this would be a case of premises negligence. The shop owner isn’t doing their duty to keep conditions safe for customers, so you can all hold them liable for your injury.
It’s a doctor’s duty to diagnose and treat conditions correctly. When a doctor misdiagnoses a condition or incorrectly performs a medical procedure, the mistake can have serious consequences like brain damage or even death. In these cases, the doctor would be held responsible for your injuries.
In some cases, defective products can cause brain injuries. For example, if your new trampoline broke or your car’s steering wheel locked up, causing you to hit your head. In these cases, your lawsuit would be against the manufacturer or retailer of the faulty product.
Determining Compensation in Brain Injury Lawsuits
Since you can’t put a value on quality of life, many people grapple with the question of how a monetary amount can be determined in the case of a brain injury. Our experienced brain injury attorneys will help you determine the amount you deserve based on the following factors:
Specific damages include expenses that have a definite economic value like medical bills and lost income. These damages include costs you’ve already incurred as well as future expenses you expect to incur over the course of your recovery. Specific damages can also include related expenses—for instance, you may need help looking after your child or need a different source of transportation.
General damages are intangible expenses that don’t have a definite monetary value. The most common example of general damages is pain and suffering. Pain and suffering damages go beyond the medical bills, compensating you for losses in your quality of life as well as any emotional distress you may face as a result of your injury.
If your injury came at the hand of someone who was being exceedingly negligent or reckless, you may be entitled to punitive damages as well. While less common than specific and general damages, they’re awarded in extreme cases like drunk driving accidents.
Expert Opinions Will Strengthen Your Case
Insurance companies will do everything they can to deny your claim or settle for far less than you deserve. An expert opinion from a medical professional can back up your claim and help solidify your case, particularly if you go to trial.
Using an MRI or CT scan, the doctor can speak to the extent of your injuries, providing professional insight into how the injury impacts your life. They’ll also be able to articulate what your recovery process might look like, and how long it will take you to get back to normal.