The force and severity of truck accidents magnify the risk of catastrophic injuries.
The brain is an incredibly complex and delicate organ that during an accident is extremely vulnerable. The force and severity of truck accidents magnify the risk of catastrophic injuries. The compiled data below involves trucking accident settlements and verdicts in California and other jurisdictions where the injured parties suffered various types of brain injuries.
What Is my Brain Injury Claim Worth in California? As a California brain injury attorney, this is a question that I get a lot. Traumatic brain injuries are some of the most severe types of injuries that people might suffer in accidents in California. If you or your loved one has suffered a TBI because of the negligent or intentional conduct of another person or entity, you may need to retain the services of an experienced California personal injury lawyer so that you can hold the responsible party liable to pay damages.
Types of Brain Injuries
Brain injuries range in severity from mild concussions to permanent brain damage that affects cognitive functioning. Some of the most common types of brain injuries include the following:
- Concussions (violent shock to the brain usually resulting in unconsciousness)
- Brain contusions (bruises on the brain)
- Coup contrecoup injuries
- Diffuse axonal injuries (lesions on the “white matter” of the brain)
- Second-impact injuries (second concussion suffered shortly after first)
- Shaken baby syndrome
- Penetrating brain injuries (when objects including skull fragments are driven into the brain)
People who suffer moderate to severe brain injuries may require lifelong medical and rehabilitative care to help them to provide for their basic needs.
Causes of Brain Injuries
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the leading cause of TBIs in the U.S. is falling. The second leading cause was being struck by objects, and the third leading cause was motor vehicle collisions. Other major causes include self-injury, assaults, and sports injuries. The most serious injuries come from collisions like truck accidents
These are typical types of damages you may be entitled to
A brain injury can severely impact a person’s life. Simply put, life may never be the same again. If you were in an accident where you not at fault and sustained a brain injury, California law provides that you can be awarded damages to compensate you for your injuries. Your compensation will be tied to the extent of your injuries as well as to what your life was like before the accident.
Proving what money damages you are entitled to can be complicated and is best handled by a lawyer who understands the different types of damages and the sophisticated methods used to determine what an appropriate damage award would be. Damages must be proven by very specific ways. A judge or jury does not simply hear your case and assign a number it thinks is fair. Rather, evidence must be presented on a variety of topics. Even if you settle, you still must take these types of damages into consideration.
- Past and future medical expenses. Any related medical expenses you have paid for can be proven by receipts and are awardable. Future medical expenses will also be estimated by an expert and are also awardable.
- Past and future loss of income. Any income you lost because you could not work due to your brain injury can be awarded. An expert will testify to how much money you will lose in the future due to your inability to work. These calculations will vary based on your job and education.
- Loss of consortium. If you are seriously injured and married, your spouse can bring a lawsuit for loss of consortium. This type of award is meant to compensate for the spouse’s loss of affection, companionship, and love after your accident.
- Pain and suffering. This award is meant to address physical and in some cases mental or emotional pain. One factor that heavily informs the pain and suffering award is the amount of medical bills you have. Also, the nature of the injury is important. If the injury involved disfigurement or was to a sensitive part of the body, a pain and suffering award is usually higher.
In some rare cases, a judge or jury may award punitive damages. While the damages discussed above are meant to compensate a victim for his or her losses, punitive damages are meant to punish the defendant. Punitive damages are not always available.
Keep in mind that any damage award could be reduced if you are found partially at fault. In California, if you are found to be partially liable, a judge or jury will assign a percentage of fault to you, and your damage award will be reduced by that amount. It is crucial to consult with an attorney experienced in traumatic brain injuries to ensure that you get all the monetary damages to which you are entitled. You need a lawyer who understands what such an injury will cost you decades down the road, so that you can get an award that fully compensates you
Contact an Experienced California Brain Injury Lawyer to Determine What Your Claim is Worth
Because jury verdicts vary so widely, every brain injury claim must be evaluated independently but, in general, the more severe the injury, symptoms, and cost of current and future medical care, the higher the value of the claim. Many defense lawyers vigorously defend against cases involving TBIs by hiring defense medical experts to contend that the victim is exaggerating their symptoms or “malingering” (pretending to be hurt for longer than they really are). If you or your loved one has suffered a TBI because of the negligence of others, you may benefit by getting help from an experienced Southern California injury attorney. A lawyer may work with medical experts in order to build a strong case for liability. This may help you to secure a much higher settlement than you might otherwise be able to recover. Contact our experienced truck accident lawyers today to schedule your free consultation so that you can learn more about your case.