Baton Rouge Catastrophic Injury Lawyer
A catastrophic injury is a severe injury that often leads to permanent disability, scarring, chronic pain, and/or disfigurement. Whether the injury was caused by a car accident or workplace accident, these injuries not only cause physical pain and suffering, but also cause emotional damage and a major financial burden. The good news is that it’s very possible to recover compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, emotional distress, and more for severe injuries through a catastrophic injury lawsuit. A Baton Rouge catastrophic injury lawyer at The Law Offices of Ossie Brown has the skill and experience necessary to help victims and their family members obtain justice from the negligent party. Call 225-343-1111 to schedule a free consultation at our law firm today.
What is a Catastrophic Injury?
While catastrophic injuries are defined in many states, Louisiana does not have a clear definition of what a catastrophic injury is. To determine if an injury is a catastrophic injury, the person’s quality of life has to have been significantly altered from the injuries sustained due to someone else’s negligence. These injuries can result in physical or mental disabilities and often require an extensive recovery time.
Common Types of Catastrophic Injuries
If you or a loved one has suffered from one of the common catastrophic injuries listed below, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer at the Law Offices of Ossie Brown today.
- Brain Damage – Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) can affect a person’s ability to move, speak, work, and learn. Depending on the severity of the brain injury, a victim may not be able to live or function independently which creates an added financial burden of paying for round-the-clock caregiving services.
- Spinal Cord Injury – Someone that has suffered a spinal cord injury may be wheelchair bound. It can take years of physical therapy for victims of spinal cord injuries to regain use of their motor skills, if that is even possible. Those that are unable to regain use of their motor skills may have to depend on a wheelchair or other medical equipment for the rest of their lives.
- Amputation Injuries – The loss of any extremity is an incredibly traumatic event and causes not only physical pain, but also mental anguish. The road to recovery is long with physical therapy that will help the victim relearn how to function following the amputation of a major body part.
- Burn Injuries – Not only is an accident resulting in burn injuries extremely painful, but the recovery from the injuries is a long, tedious process. Depending on the extent of the burns, victims will need extensive treatment to repair and regrow the affected areas. Those that suffer from burn injuries will always deal with scarring that is both physical and emotional.
- Other Catastrophic Injuries include loss of hearing, major broken bones, skull and facial fractures, and any other injury that renders the victim permanently disabled and unable to function on their own for the rest of their life.
Common Causes of Catastrophic Injuries
Catastrophic injuries can happen to anyone. Often they are the result of one single accident. The following causes of catastrophic injuries are listed below:
- Motor Vehicle Accidents including cars, trucks and motorcycles, as well as pedestrian and boating accidents.
- Premises Liability Accidents include slip and fall accidents and dog bites that occur on another person’s property.
- Workplace Injuries are more common in certain occupations than others. A few types of workplace accidents include an on-site explosion on-site or malfunctioning heavy machinery.
- Medical Malpractice can fall under catastrophic injuries if a patient endures surgical errors, medication errors, diagnostic errors, chiropractic errors, or even anesthesia errors. Victims of medical malpractice can suffer a wide variety of serious injuries such as spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, paralysis, strokes, seizures, and more.
- Other Causes of Catastrophic Injuries include fires, explosions, sports injuries, and violent physical assaults.
Personal Injury Cases vs. Catastrophic Injury Cases
Since Louisiana does not clearly define catastrophic injuries, how do you know if your injury falls under this category? There are several factors that determine whether an injury is a catastrophic injury versus a personal injury. While victims of both catastrophic injuries and personal injuries suffer greatly, one type of injury is more severe than the other.
The Severity of the Damage
Victims of both types of injuries not only suffer physical damage, but also mental and emotional damage, as well as medical bills and other expenses resulting from their injuries. The victims of a personal injury accident may recover for weeks or months from their injuries. Meanwhile, the victim of a catastrophic injury will have months or even years worth of medical treatments and rehabilitation that can cause a mountain of debt. The injuries from a catastrophic injury – such as a severe traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury – can also result in permanent disability. This life-altering damage caused from the catastrophic injury also has a great emotional and mental impact on the victim and their loved ones.
The recovery time for a personal injury accident can last weeks or months, but the victim is able to return to work at some point. The injuries from their accident do not debilitate them in the long run as they are able to go back to living the life they had prior to the accident.
On the other hand, many catastrophic injury victims are not this lucky. The recovery time for a catastrophic accident can last years while the victim never fully recovers from their injuries whether they are now wheelchair bound or otherwise. This can mean the victim is unable to return to work and cannot pay for the medical bills that they have acquired during treatment. Not only does a catastrophic injury change a person’s life physically, but the increasing debt and overall life changes can cause severe mental and emotional trauma.
Determining Negligence in a Catastrophic Injury Claim
A Baton Rouge catastrophic injury attorney at The Law Offices of Ossie Brown will use their legal expertise in helping determine whether or not negligence played a role in your case. In order to have the most successful catastrophic injury lawsuit possible, the victim and their legal team will have to prove the 4 elements of negligence listed below.
- Duty of Care: Everyone has a responsibility to behave responsibly and carefully on the road or at work, for example, so as not to cause harm to others.
- Breached Duty of Care: When a person acts negligently or recklessly, they are breaching the duty of care.
- Causation: The victim suffered a serious injury as a direct result of the breached duty of care.
- Damages: The victim should receive fair compensation due to the extent of their catastrophic injuries and the damages that they incurred from their life-altering injury.
Important Evidence in Catastrophic Injury Cases
The evidence listed below is key to any catastrophic injury case. Without this evidence, it will be very difficult for Baton Rouge catastrophic injury attorneys to prove that negligence occurred.
- Medical Records are the most important piece of evidence in your catastrophic injury case. These records will state the extent of the injuries sustained from the accident and the cost of the medical care you received. Medical care listed on your records could include medications, multiple surgeries, medical devices, physical therapy, mental health counseling costs, and more.
- Pictures and Videos: It’s important to document any injuries from a catastrophic accident so that they may be used to prove that negligence occurred. For example, if the injuries were caused by a motor vehicle accident, you would want to present photos or videos of your injuries and the accident scene.
- Witness Statements can give those that were not present for the accident a clearer picture of what occurred.
- Police Reports are an important piece of evidence in proving that negligence occurred in car accidents, work accidents, or even violent physical assaults.
Damages for a Catastrophic Injury
Baton Rouge personal injury attorneys can help catastrophically injured victims recover financial compensation for both economic damages and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are financial losses sustained due to the catastrophic injuries the victim suffered. Examples of economic damages are listed below:
- Past and future medical and rehabilitation bills
- Mental health counseling bills
- Past and future lost wages
- Property damage
- Costs of medical equipment like wheelchairs or prosthetic devices
- Caretaking expenses
- Funeral and burial costs, if the catastrophic injury resulted in wrongful death
Non-economic damages are losses that don’t have a monetary value. Common examples include:
- Physical and emotional pain
- Loss of consortium
- Permanent scarring, disfigurement, and/or disability
- Loss of enjoyment of life
How a Baton Rouge Catastrophic Injury Lawyer Can Help You
Oftentimes, insurance companies will push you to settle out of court. This is not always the best option for someone suffering from a catastrophic injury, because the settlement may not cover all of the damages suffered. That’s why it’s so important to work with an experienced personal injury attorney. Our legal team can protect your rights and ensure that you receive maximum compensation for your suffering through an insurance company or a personal injury claim.
When you hire catastrophic injury lawyers at The Law Office of Ossie Brown, you can expect:
- Guidance throughout the entire legal process, from beginning to end.
- Our attorneys will consult medical doctors, forensic experts, engineers, and more to prove that negligence occurred and determine who was at fault.
- We will fight for the maximum financial compensation to cover all the damages that you and your loved ones have suffered from during this difficult time.
Call a Baton Rouge Catastrophic Injury Lawyer at The Law Offices of Ossie Brown Today
If you or a loved one has suffered a catastrophic injury, the legal team at Law Offices of Ossie Brown wants to represent you. Having served the Baton Rouge area since 1984, our attorneys are experienced in handling catastrophic injury claims. We will make sure that you receive the maximum financial compensation you deserve. Let us fight the legal battle for you so that you can focus on your physical and emotional recovery. Call us today at 225-343-1111 to schedule a free legal consultation.
Let us review your case at no cost to you. We want to take the time to get to know you and understand your legal goals and objectives.
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