If you have suffered a serious blow to the head that resulted from another’s negligence, you may have a strong claim for damages. An experienced traumatic brain injury attorney is necessary to help ensure you recover fair damages, given the potentially devastating and lifelong impact of such an injury.
Examples of traumatic brain injury causes that can warrant significant damages in Florida lawsuits include:
- Auto accidents (including car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents and pedestrian accidents);
- Defective products (toys, tools, cooking utensils, ladders, etc.);
- Swimming pool/ drowning accidents;
- Construction accidents;
- Nursing home neglect or nursing home abuse;
- Medical malpractice.
A recent study published in the Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation, analyzed the physical, cognitive and psychosocial factors associated with mortality among those who suffer chronic traumatic brain injury. They analyzed nearly 1,200 decedents and more than 10,800 control subjects, finding those more likely to survive had independence in mobility (the most strongly-correlated/ important factor). Another key factor was the degree of community participation. Those who survived longer tended to be more involved socially.
Caregivers were instructed to focus on these points. A traumatic brain injury attorney analyzing a case will also be looking at all these factors, and how one’s quality of life has diminished since the injury, in ascertaining what degree of damages to ask of insurers (or more likely the judge or jury). Although many Fort Lauderdale personal injury claims are resolved in pre-trial settlements with the help of an attorney negotiated on your behalf, many traumatic brain injury cases are heavily disputed in some regard, primarily because insurers recognize the profound financial implications.
Fort Lauderdale Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney Explains Damages
There are two primary types of damages your traumatic brain injury attorney will likely be seeking: General and Special. Both fall under the umbrella of compensatory damages, which are intended to compensate those who have suffered actual losses as a result of an injury caused by negligence.
Special damages are those that can be explained in terms of a quantifiable, monetary loss. Sometimes we refer to these as “out-of-pocket” expenses. They can include:
- Medical expenses
- Loss of wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Property damage
- Funeral and burial expenses (in the event of a wrongful death case)
On the other hand, general damages refer to those wherein money is a rough substitute for losses, which aren’t easily quantifiable. These include:
- Pain and suffering (physical)
- Mental anguish
- Embarrassment/ humiliation
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium (paid to spouse or children of person injured person)
- Loss of life capacity
- Disfigurement/ scarring
In some instances, one may also be able to obtain punitive damages, as outlined in F.S. 768.72. These are paid to the plaintiff, but not for any specified loss. Rather, they are paid to penalize the defendant(s) for egregious conduct. As a Florida traumatic brain injury attorney can explain, one cannot automatically pursue punitive damages in a civil lawsuit except under very specific circumstances – no matter how serious the injury. Plaintiff must first obtain the judge’s approval prior to trial to seek such damages to ensure they meet that threshold. That requires producing evidence showing defendant engaged either in intentional misconduct (had actual knowledge the conduct was wrong and and that there was a high probability of injury or damage to plaintiff would result) OR gross negligence, which is engaging in conduct so reckless or void of care it amounted to a conscious disregard or indifference to the safety and well-being of others who might be exposed to that conduct.
Call Freeman Injury Law — 1-800-561-7777 for a free appointment to discuss your rights. Now serving Orlando, West Palm Beach, Port St. Lucie and Fort Lauderdale.
Factors linked to mortality after traumatic brain injury identified, Sept. 28, 2018, Science Daily/ Kaiser Foundation
More Blog Entries:
Birth Injury Verdict Results in $11.35M Verdict for Brain Injury, July 12, 2018, Fort Lauderdale Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney Blog