Personal injuries can sometimes be traumatic, with some resulting in life-changing and long-term consequences for the victim. Some injuries can permanently affect a person’s life, preventing the victim from performing their daily routines and from going back to work. Catastrophic injuries tend to have long-term and serious effects on a person and can put serious stress on the family of the victim.
If the negligence of another person or entity leads to permanent impairment, they should be held accountable for their actions or inactions. However, you will need the best representation to ensure that justice is served. At the Crockett Law Group, our highly skilled and experienced Victorville catastrophic injury lawyer can fight on your behalf to ensure you get the justice you deserve.
Get in touch with us at (800) 900-9393 to schedule a free consultation with a personal injury lawyer. We will answer all the questions and concerns you may have in confidence and evaluate your case for free.
What Is a Catastrophic Injury?
A catastrophic injury is one that has direct or proximate consequences, resulting in the victim being unable to engage in meaningful work. In other words, it refers to the kind of injuries that result in permanent impairments in an individual. Catastrophic injuries are often used to refer to injuries that harm the spinal cord or brain, thereby limiting the functional capabilities of the person.
Sustaining a catastrophic injury could also mean losing a vital part of your body, such as a limb, the ability to walk, or the capacity to form a whole thought. Another common example of a catastrophic injury is a severe burn.
Catastrophic Injury Statistics
It’s helpful to understand the statistics surrounding catastrophic injuries in order to help prevent these kinds of injuries from happening. The data outlined below was collected from the National Safety Council (NSC), which is a non-profit group dedicated to advocating for American safety.
Some of the catastrophic injury statistics for the country are as follows:
- There were a total of 48.3 million injuries in the U.S. for the year 2019.
- The injuries cost about $1.0979 trillion to treat.
- The same year saw 173, 040 preventable injury-related deaths.
- The number represents a rise of 3.5% from 167, 127 in 2019.
What Are the Long-Term Effects of Catastrophic Injuries?
Coming to terms with the fact that you could be facing a long period of recovery ahead with the possibility of experiencing lasting effects after an injury can be difficult for most people. That’s why it’s important to know some of the common ways that people who suffer catastrophic injuries are impacted. To take the proper action and plan for your future appropriately, you want to first understand what you could be facing.
One of the first things to consider is the fact that a catastrophic injury, no matter the severity, will be expensive. When you take into account long-term care implications, advanced medical treatments, ongoing physical therapy, and even extended hospital stays, the bills can start to add up quickly.
Besides this, many people will find themselves unable to work because of their injury, which typically results in lost earnings and lost future wages. This could lead to a stressful financial situation as you could find yourself facing long-term unexpected expenses.
A catastrophic injury will often affect the victim’s movement, cause chronic pain, and even prevent you from enjoying activities you once enjoyed or used to partake in regularly. This can be very difficult for some people and may even lead to depression and hopelessness.
Based on your line of work, some victims of catastrophic injuries find it difficult or impossible to resume their career path. This is especially true for people required to engage in physical activities while on the job, as performing as they did before the injury is often no longer feasible.
Can I Sue for a Catastrophic Injury?
The California justice system takes catastrophic injury cases very seriously. If you have suffered a catastrophic injury, then it’s important that you get a skilled and dedicated lawyer as soon as possible. Otherwise, your livelihood and your rights could be at stake.
Keep in mind that an experienced Victorville catastrophic injury lawyer will be able to:
- Thoroughly investigate your case
- Negotiate a favorable settlement award
- Provide the best representation if your case goes to trial
At the Crockett Law Group, our team has an excellent understanding of the local courts and an excellent understanding of California’s personal injury justice system.
It’s worth noting that California is a comparative negligence state. This means that courts in the state allow injured persons to collect damages, even if they are found to be 99% responsible for the accident. The state doesn’t cap the amount of fault at 50% as with the modified comparative negligence laws followed in certain states.
However, with comparative negligence laws, the courts essentially reduce the plaintiff’s award based on their percentage of fault in the accident. For example, if the court finds you 20% responsible for the accident, and you are awarded $100,000 in damages, you will only receive $80,000.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer for a Catastrophic Injury Claim?
Catastrophic injury cases are complex, and a sizeable amount of compensation is usually at stake. There you need a skilled Victorville catastrophic injury lawyer to help you.
Here are some of the ways that the Crockett Law Group can assist you.
Our firm can conduct interviews, evaluate insurance company reports, subpoena audio or video recordings, obtain reviews by experts (including medical records assessment) and investigate the backgrounds of relevant parties or persons.
We go beyond conducting interviews, making photographic records, and securing medical facts. Keep in mind that in the absence of a thorough lawyer, the other party might be able to tamper with its records of an accident, or even alter some facts. As soon as you hire us, we will start collecting evidence and preserving it.
Negotiating With the Defendant
One of the most important tasks your attorney will help with is negotiating with the insurance companies for settlement payments. If you don’t have an experienced lawyer, you might find yourself being compelled to accept a low-ball offer, as most insurance companies will attempt to devalue your claim or even deny it completely. Your attorney will be well prepared for these tactics and negotiate with the insurance companies on your behalf.
Represent You if Your Case Goes to Trial
Most personal injury cases settle before going to court. However, not all of them do. If your pre-trial negotiations and talks don’t yield an appropriate resolution, we won’t be afraid to file a personal injury lawsuit on your behalf in a California civil court. If it’s necessary to go to trial, your lawyer has the experience to represent by preparing a strong case, examining witnesses, presenting compelling evidence, and making winning arguments before the judge or jury.
What Type of Damages Can I Recover in a Catastrophic Injury Claim?
Victims can recover three types of compensation in a catastrophic injury case.
These are damages that can be calculated and verified objectively. They include the following:
The costs involved in catastrophic injury cases could exceed $1 million over the lifetime of a victim. The victim should be able to recover the past, present, and future medical and treatment costs related to the injury.
Lost Wages and Capacity to Earn
The victim may also be eligible for the cost of the wages they have already lost from spending time away from work, along with any foreseeable lost income in case a disability prevents them from returning to work.
If the accident that caused you the catastrophic injury also results in loss of or damage to your property, such as damage to your vehicle in a motor vehicle accident case, the defendant should also compensate you for property replacement or repairs.
These are the kinds of damages that are difficult to calculate or verify objectively. Catastrophic injuries often cause immense pain and suffering to the victim. Non-economic damages will cover things like physical suffering, emotional distress, loss of quality of life, loss of consortium, and diminished enjoyment of life.
The judge might decide to award you punitive damages as an additional punishment to the defendant for gross carelessness, maliciousness, negligence, or intent to harm the victim, or disregard for human life. While punitive damages are rare, they are more common in catastrophic injury cases compared to ordinary personal injury claims.
Talk to a Victorville Catastrophic Injury Lawyer Today
For people who have been involved in an accident and believe another party is responsible for their injuries, catastrophic or not, it can be overwhelming to determine the right course of legal action. Catastrophic injuries may result in an inability to work while making a recovery, accompanied by mounting medical bills. This can make a challenging situation even more daunting.
At the Crockett Law Group, we understand the kind of frustration our clients might be going through, and we work diligently to help ease their concerns. This is why we offer a free consultation to all our clients. Get in touch with us today at (800) 900-9393 to schedule your free consultation with us.