Car accidents can cause a wide range of injuries, ranging from minor scrapes and bruises to life-altering catastrophic injuries. These types of injuries can be devastating not only to the individual who has suffered them but also to their family and loved ones.
An attorney with Keller, Melchiorre & Walsh is standing by to help if you or someone close to you suffered a catastrophic injury in an accident caused by a negligent driver. You can contact us online to schedule a free consultation, or you can call (561) 295-5825.
What is a Catastrophic Injury?
A “catastrophic injury” has a permanent and severe impact, leaving the victim with disabilities, disfigurement, and reduced quality of life. The effects of catastrophic injuries can be both physical and emotional. They cause significant pain and suffering for the victim and those who love them.
Types of Catastrophic Injuries
Car accidents can cause several types of catastrophic injuries. Some of the most common types include:
Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs)
Traumatic brain injuries occur when a sudden jolt or blow to the head occurs. This type of injury can cause many symptoms, including headaches, dizziness, loss of consciousness, and memory loss. In severe cases, TBIs can cause permanent brain damage, resulting in cognitive, emotional, and physical impairments.
Spinal Cord Injuries
This type of injury can cause paralysis, loss of sensation, and loss of bodily function below the injury site. Spinal cord injuries can be complete, meaning there is no function below the level of the injury, or incomplete, meaning there is some function.
Amputations can be traumatic and life-altering, requiring ongoing medical care, rehabilitation, and therapy.
Burn injuries cause severe pain, scarring, and disfigurement. Not only is the pain associated with the injury excruciating, but so is the treatment. Skin grafts may be necessary to promote healing.
Internal Organ Damage
Internal organ damage can occur when there is trauma to the internal organs, such as the liver, spleen, or kidneys. This type of injury can be life-threatening and requires emergency medical attention.
Causes of Car Accidents that Result in Severe Injury
Car accidents can occur due to various factors, including driver error, mechanical failure, road conditions, and weather. Some of the most common causes of car accidents that result in severe injury include:
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Reckless driving
- Weather conditions
The Cost of a Severe Injury
Catastrophic injuries can have a significant financial, physical, and emotional impact on the victim and their family. Not only are there substantial financial costs, there are also mental costs victims will often face as well. The following is a brief look at each.
The financial costs of a catastrophic injury can be staggering, including:
- Medical expenses: Catastrophic injuries often require extensive medical treatment, including surgery, hospital stays, rehabilitation, and ongoing therapy. The cost of medical treatment can easily exceed hundreds of thousands of dollars or more.
- Lost wages: Catastrophic injuries can cause the victim to miss work for an extended period, resulting in lost income and benefits.
- Future earnings: Severe injuries can prevent the victim from returning to work, resulting in a loss of future earnings and reduced earning capacity.
- Home modifications: In many cases, catastrophic injuries require modifications to the victim’s home, such as wheelchair ramps, grab bars, and other accessibility features.
Catastrophic injuries can also have a significant mental and emotional impact on the victim and their family, including:
- Pain and suffering: Catastrophic injuries can cause severe pain and suffering, both physically and emotionally.
- Mental health disorders: The psychological impact of a catastrophic injury can be significant, including depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
- Loss of enjoyment: Catastrophic injuries can significantly impact the victim’s ability to enjoy life, including hobbies and activities they once enjoyed.
How to Recover Damages after an Accident
You may be entitled to compensation for your losses if you have suffered a catastrophic injury in a car accident. You must take action against the at-fault driver to recover damages. The following steps can help you obtain the money you deserve:
Seek Medical Attention
If you have been injured in a car accident, seek medical attention immediately. Seeing a doctor will ensure that your injuries are properly documented and treated, which will be critical in any personal injury lawsuit.
Contact an Attorney
A skilled lawyer can help you understand your rights and options. They can also investigate the accident to determine who was at fault and who’s responsible for paying the compensation you have coming. Your attorney can also call upon expert witnesses to strengthen your case.
Document Your Damages
Keep detailed records of your medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages related to your injury. Your attorney will use these records to determine the amount of compensation to which you’re entitled.
Negotiate a Settlement
Your attorney will negotiate with the at-fault driver’s insurance company for a fair settlement. While most cases end in a settlement, there are times when they’ll have to go to trial.
How Much Will My Settlement Be?
The amount of your settlement will depend on several factors, including the severity of your injury, the cost of your medical treatment, and the impact of the injury on your quality of life. A skilled, seasoned lawyer can help you understand what damages you may be entitled to and can negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf.
Contact KMW to Speak with an Experienced Catastrophic Injury Attorney
If you or a loved one has suffered a catastrophic injury in a car accident, contact KMW to speak with an experienced catastrophic injury attorney. Our team has the knowledge and experience necessary to help you obtain every dollar you have coming.
At KMW, we’re committed to fighting for your rights. We’ll work tirelessly to ensure you receive the compensation you need to cover your medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages related to your injury.