Those who sustain a life-changing catastrophic injury need to protect their rights and financial independence by suing for damages in civil court. They can enter the legal system by contacting an experienced Delray Beach catastrophic injury lawyer who is well-versed in this area of law. Skilled and dedicated injury lawyers in Delray Beach will work hard to obtain an appropriate amount of compensation for you to help with your recovery.
Catastrophic Injury Defined
Florida law defines a catastrophic injury as a “permanent impairment.” These injuries include amputations, brain and spinal cord damages, third degree and worse burns, blindness, hearing loss, and organ damage.
All of these severe injuries require special care, such as:
- Special equipment such as prosthetics, wheel chairs, and accommodating home remodeling
- Long term care and nursing
- Living assistance
If the catastrophic injury was the result of an accident, or at the hand of another person or entity, the injured person has a right to sue the negligent party for damages to pay for the needed care and other harms under Florida’s comparative negligence standard.
Legally, negligence means that an injury or other harm was caused by a dangerous or improper act.
Florida lawmakers reasoned that anyone who bears some fault in an accident must share the financial responsibility. Modified comparative negligence reduces the amount of damages that can be claimed by the percentage of fault, up to 50%. If they are found 51% or more at fault, they are barred from recovery entirely. A person who is 80 percent at fault cannot claim damages, while a person who is 40% at fault will be able to recover 60% of their total damages.
Important Elements of Negligence Law
Negligence has elements that the plaintiff needs to prove to be successful in suing under negligence law:
- Duty of care: A person has a legal responsibility to perform in a way that does not cause injury or property damage to another person or entity
- Breach: An act that violates duty of care. Failing to act can also be a breach
- Causation in fact: But for the breach, the accident would not have happened
- Proximate cause: A particular foreseeable consequence occurred
- Damages: Financial harm occurred
Suing for damages is intended to put the harmed person in a financial position that existed before the accident and to pay for expenses caused by the accident. These are:
- Cost of medical care and hospitalization
- Therapeutic treatment and equipment
- Loss of current and future income that can no longer be earned
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of companionship or consortium
- Property damage
Role of a Delray Beach Catastrophic Injury Attorney
Delray Beach catastrophic injury lawyers will prepare a lawsuit alleging the negligent act after conducting a thorough investigation of the event and its consequences. A lawyer will interview, under penalty of perjury, everyone involved to use as testimony, and research legal precedent citing applicable Florida statutes and case law.
Although the attorney will prepare the case for trial, including handling motions along the way. Many personal injury civil cases are settled out of court with the defendant’s insurance carrier, which will attempt to limit the financial amount. But the attorney will negotiate from a position of strength to win the amount of damages sought.