Traumatic brain injuries can be caused by a variety of impacts to the head, resulting in damage that ranges from mild to severe. Sometimes even whiplash from a car accident can cause injury could cause a serious injury. When a traumatic brain injury (TBI) happens in an accident, it is best to promptly contact a West Palm Beach traumatic brain injury lawyer who has handled many of these cases to sue for damages to protect the family’s financial well-being.
Medical treatment for traumatic brain injuries can be costly and an accomplished West Palm Beach personal injury attorney can help recover damages and hold the responsible parties accountable.
Florida law defines a severe traumatic brain injury as catastrophic if it results in a “permanent impairment.” Damages are intended to compensate the traumatic brain injury patient for expenses incurred. Common damages include:
- Medical care, including hospitalization, surgeries, tests, home care, and equipment
- Therapeutic treatments and equipment
- Recovery of income losses including income that could have been earned
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
- Property damage
If the accident that caused the traumatic brain injury exacerbated a previous injury, damages may be claimed for treating that injury under what the law calls the “eggshell plaintiff” rule.
Comparative Negligence in TBI Cases
Damages are recoverable using Florida’s modified comparative negligence law, which is used in personal injury cases. Negligence is an act performed without consideration for the safety of others and their properties.
Under modified comparative negligence, any claimant who has some responsibility in causing the accident may not recover all of their damages, which is an incentive to act responsibly. The losses are reduced by the percentage of fault a person had in the accident, up to 50%. For example, if a person is 30 percent at fault, damages are reduced by 30 percent. If they are 51% or more at fault, they are barred from recovery entirely.
Elements Needed to Prove Negligence
Negligence law has five elements that the suing party must prove to win the case and be awarded damages:
- Duty of care: A person has a legal obligation toward others and their property not to act in a manner that would cause injury or property damage
- Breach: An act – or an omission – that violates duty of care
- Causation in fact: The breaching act resulted in the injury or property damage
- Proximate cause: A particular event that was foreseeable occurred
- Damages: Financial loss resulted from the negligent act
Statute of Limitations
To recover damages, a lawsuit must be filed within Florida’s statute of limitations. The injured party has two years from the date of the accident or the date the injury was discovered, including if the defendant is the government of a city, a county, or the state. If the deadline is missed, the injured party cannot sue. A qualified West Palm Beach traumatic brain injury lawyer can help individuals file their suit.
Working with a West Palm Beach Brain Injury Lawyer
The lawsuit presents the evidence necessary to prove the case as well as citations for the applicable case and statutory laws. West Palm Beach traumatic brain injury lawyers will conduct a thorough investigation to develop physical evidence from the accident scene, documentary records of all care provided, and the testimony taken under oath from all parties and witnesses.
Although lawyers will work to prepare the case for trial, personal injury cases are often settled with the defendant’s insurance carrier, which will try to limit the amount of money to be paid. The personal injury lawyers at Kogan & DiSalvo, however, will aggressively work toward a fair settlement that covers the client’s losses.