Any type of brain injury is complex and can alter your life for the worse. A brain injury can occur during a Clearwater car accident, while playing sports, as a result of a fall, or after an assault. When you are in any type of accident that involves head trauma, you are at risk for a brain injury.
Brain injuries can range from a mild concussion to severe traumatic brain injuries. Depending on the severity of the injury, victims may have to deal with motor skill impairments, personality changes, changes in vision or hearing, and in extreme cases, could result in death.
When someone else is at fault for your injury, you have the right to determine what legal remedies are available to you to help you pay for the medical care you will need to recover from a brain injury. Our Clearwater brain injuries can help you do that.
If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury because of someone’s negligence, contact a Clearwater personal injury attorney at the Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA immediately.
Hire an Experienced Brain Injury Lawyer at the Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA
One of the challenges victims of brain injury face is identifying an attorney who has experience handling their cases. In some instances, agreements can be reached with an insurer to provide compensation to the victim for their injuries, while in other cases, it may require going to court to get a fair settlement.
We have successfully handled numerous brain injury cases, including:
- $3.2 million for a semi-truck accident resulting in brain injury
- $1.75 million for a shoulder surgery with mild TBI
- $750,000 for a traumatic brain injury after rear-end car accident
- $500,000 for a brain injury and moderate neck pain after a car accident
While our experience cannot be used as a guarantee of what results we may obtain in the future, what these results show is our willingness to advocate tirelessly for our clients. We are committed to making sure we do everything possible to ensure victims of brain injuries caused by another’s negligence get the compensation they deserve.
Most Common Causes of Brain Injury
One of the three leading causes of brain injury is car accidents. In the Clearwater area during one recent year, 17,874 roadway accidents resulted in injuries to 10,754 people and 121 fatalities. The full data is not yet available for the following year, which already logged 8,576 crashes, 5,259 injuries, and 50 fatalities during the first part of the subsequent year. There is no doubt some of these victims may have suffered brain injuries.
Data pertaining to brain injuries are seriously out of date. However, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) listed falls, being struck by or against an object, and motor vehicle accidents as the top three leading causes of brain injury. Understanding how someone’s negligence can impact brain injury in these cases is important.
Slip and fall accidents – Nearly 48 percent of traumatic brain injuries were reportedly connected to falls. A fall can occur when a property owner fails to properly provide a safe environment for shoppers, visitors, and guests. When a property owner is, or should be aware, of hazards such as uneven flooring, torn carpeting or lifted tiles, or a broken hand-railing and fails to address such a hazard, they could be liable for injuries you sustained if you slip, trip, or fall on their premises.
Roadway accident injuries – Whether you are operating a motor vehicle, a pedestrian, or traveling on a bicycle or motorcycle, you could potentially suffer a brain injury if you are involved in an accident. In cases involving two motor vehicles, the force of a rear-end collision could result in you striking your head or the trauma of being thrust forward could cause a concussion or other brain injury. Bicycle and motorcycle operators, even when wearing an appropriate helmet can still suffer a brain injury if they are struck by a motor vehicle. Pedestrians have less protection than passengers or operators of any type of vehicle and being thrown to the ground after being struck by a car, truck or motorcycle could cause serious head injuries.
Struck or hit against injuries – In some instances, victims could suffer a brain injury when they are hit by an object or they hit their heads against an immovable object. These types of injuries can occur in the workplace due to unsafe working conditions, or as a result of a coworker not paying attention and throwing an object which ultimately strikes a victim. These types of incidents can be very serious and can result in severe brain injuries.
These are not the only incidents that can result in a brain injury. Consult an attorney with experience handling these cases to determine what steps to take if you believe your brain injury resulted from negligence.
Assessing Fault in Brain Injury Cases
These cases are especially complicated, and determining who is at fault for your injuries is equally as complicated. When you are injured in a car accident, the at-fault driver can be held responsible for your injuries. However, if the car had a mechanical defect, the fault may lie with the repair company, a manufacturer of tires, or if you were a passenger in a ride-share vehicle, the company hiring the driver may be at fault.
Some cases are less complicated; for example, if you were assaulted and suffered a brain injury, the person assaulting you is almost certainly at fault. Even these cases may have multiple people who are liable, however, because if the assault occurred as a result of unsafe conditions on someone’s property, the property owner may also be at fault.
When you work with an experienced Clearwater brain injury attorney, they will fully assess your case. Additionally, they will work closely with you to understand the circumstances under which you suffered the brain injury, so all responsible parties are identified and contribute to your compensation. A brain injury may force you out of work for an extended period of time, assuming you fully recover and can return to work (which isn’t always the case).
Damages That Your May Recover After a Brain Injury
Remember, Florida’s statute of limitations for personal injury cases is four years. This means victims have four years from the time their injuries occurred to file a personal injury lawsuit. If you are a family member of a loved one who suffered a traumatic brain injury and ultimately lost their life due to those injuries, you may have only two years to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
Recovery times, severity of a brain injury, types of incidents that resulted in the injury, and how cooperative an insurer is with victims and their attorneys will all play a role in the final compensation awarded in a brain injury case. However, there are some basic expectations for damages that may be collected in most personal injury cases. Some of the damages you may be able to recover include:
Current and future wages – It may take only a week or so to recover from a mild concussion, but if you try to rush your recovery and get back to work too soon, you could suffer from headaches, tiredness, and irritability. More serious brain injuries can take months to recover from, if you fully recover from them at all. Victims of traumatic brain injuries may need 24 months or more of recovery time during which time they will be unable to work. Your physician can discuss your anticipated recovery time with your brain injury lawyer to ensure you are not suffering a financial setback as a result of an injury caused by a third party. Victims of brain injuries are entitled to recover their lost wages for all time they lose from work.
Medical expenses resulting from brain injury – Even when you have medical insurance, you could be facing unusual medical bills stemming from a brain injury. Clearwater-area medical expenses are steep, with average rehabilitation costs being approximately $1,200 daily and inpatient medical care can be as high as $6,000 per day depending on the level of care victims require. When you combine these costs with the high costs of specialized tests like Positron emission tomography (PET), magnetic resonance (MR), or single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) to determine the severity of your injury, your medical bills can spiral out of control. In addition, in some cases, victims of brain injury require specialized nursing care or other care at home. We can help you recover your out of pocket medical costs including prescription medications, doctor visits, and rehabilitation costs associated with your brain injury.
Property damage losses – When the accident that caused your brain injury is a motor vehicle, bike, or motorcycle, you are entitled to insist on having it replaced. Additionally, damage to your clothing or other personal property may also be able to be reimbursed by the party responsible for your injury.
Non-economic losses from brain injury – Some losses are not easy to calculate in dollar amounts. For example, it is not possible to put a dollar amount on pain and suffering, mental anguish, and others. These amounts may be further increased if the person responsible for your brain injury behaved in a particularly egregious manner. While these losses cannot be calculated easily, a Clearwater brain injury lawyer can explain what types of compensation may be awarded for non-economic damages.
There is no single formula for determining how much it may be possible to recover after a brain injury. This is because every incident has multiple factors that will be taken into consideration when negotiating with the insurance company, or when presenting your case in court.
Passing Liability to Victims
Insurance companies are in the business of collecting premiums and paying claims. However, their interest is in protecting their shareholders and the bottom line of the company. This means initial contact could turn out one of two ways—the insurer may reject your claim as invalid, or they may attempt to offer you a settlement for less than what your claim may be worth. When a claim is rejected, it is typically with a reason such as denying liability.
Denying liability is a common tactic with insurance company adjusters. For example, if you were involved in a car accident, the first thing the insurer will attempt to do is blame you for the accident, even if there is no reason to believe you were at fault. In most cases, this is a delaying tactic and not a real “denial;” it is to allow the company to determine the merits of your case and see how little they can pay.
Another issue you could face is the insurer claiming your injuries are not as serious as you have presented them. They may also claim you had injuries before the incident that they feel negate your claim. This type of tactic is usually easily undermined by providing your medical records from before the incident resulting in your brain injury and your current medical records.
Your brain injury lawyer can help you provide the documents necessary as well as explain to you what stand the insurance company will take to avoid liability. There are other ways insurers will attempt to minimize your claims, which is why you must work with a competent attorney as quickly as possible after your accident. Remember, never answer any questions an adjuster poses to you without speaking with an attorney first.
We Help You Cover the Costs of Clearwater Brain Injuries
At Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we understand you have concerns about finances after a brain injury. We know you are likely worried about the cost of filing a lawsuit, and that because you are unable to return to full employment, you are uncertain if you can afford legal help. Not only do we offer a free consultation to victims of brain injury, but if we agree to take your case, we take the case on a contingency basis. This means the attorney handling your case will not collect any lawyer’s fees for their services unless they secure a settlement or judgment in your case.
If you or a loved one suffered a brain injury in Clearwater and you are uncertain what steps to take next, contact Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA or call us today at 833-552-7274 for a free consultation.