Legal Side of TBI After Accident?
TBI cases in America are rising. Approximately 1.7 million TBIs occur every year–some of these are, tragically, fatal. TBI hospitalizations, surgeries, and ER visits are costly medical expenses for a family. When an accident occurs and a person sustains injuries unexpectedly, a family may not have financial resources on hand to cover medical expenses, living expenses, and at times end of life care.
The actual legal process of pursuing compensation after sustaining a TBI is a puzzle. After a Traumatic Brain Injury, navigating the legal side of such injuries is complex, best left for expert attorneys who see these cases into the trenches.
This Shaked Law Firm article thoroughly explains the process of Florida Traumatic Brain Injury “TBI” cases and Life Care Plans.
Why is a Personal Injury lawyer with TBI experience necessary?
Retaining an attorney with Board Certification, and with experience in Florida TBI cases is important after a victim sustains injuries as the result of someone else’s negligence. A lawyer with experience takes the burden from the family, so they’re able to help the victim heal. That is the only thing a family should have to worry about.
Hospital bills, lost wages, and childcare expenses can add up quickly. An attorney with experience in Florida TBI cases can passionately pursue the right to compensation. These lawyers are better able to provide sound legal advice for you and your family.
What are the two main types of TBI?
In short, there are two different types of TBI that occur most frequently: Open and Closed Traumatic Brain Injury. What are the differences between these injuries? Are there different prognoses for each type?
- Open TBI: This type of Traumatic Brain Injury means that the skull has suffered a fracture. This injury comes as a result of a fall or other serious injury where the skull has direct contact with the hard surface of an object. This type of injury has less chance of cerebral edema or swelling of the brain, due to the skull being fractured. However, that doesn’t reduce the seriousness of the injury, and serious cognitive disruption, strokes, coma, and death can occur.
- Closed TBI: While a closed head injury doesn’t involve fracture of the skull, it is considered more serious than an open TBI. This is due to the fact that cerebral edema is more likely to occur and thusly, blood clots within the brain can form. This type of TBI as well as an Open TBI can both cause paralysis, loss of consciousness and fatalities if not treated quickly and by experienced medical professionals.
What are other common forms of brain injury?
Contusions (bruises) of the brain frequently occur as a result of auto accidents and sports-related injuries such as football. These injuries force the brain back and forth and the force itself can cause bleeding. Bleeding on the brain can result in stroke, paralysis, and even in death.
Another aspect of of TBI is “tearing”. The force of the brain and skull colliding with a surface can cause small cracks, causing damage to the nervous system and dependent upon where in the brain this damage occurs, can seriously impair use of bodily functions ranging from speech to use of arms and legs.
No matter what kind of trauma the brain encounters, swelling usually occurs. It’s the body’s natural way of beginning the healing process, but it can cause problems when the brain cannot swell past the point of the skull and has no room to migrate any further. This occurrence is called “intra-cranial pressure”. It can severely impair bodily function and in extreme cases it can cause death.
How does a lawyer evaluate Florida TBI cases?
After suffering a head injury such as a TBI, victims and their families often struggle with medical bills and lost wages. An expert Personal Injury attorney will be able to present a medical evaluation pertaining the extent of the victim’s impairments. This evaluation is necessary in order to recover compensation that can ease the financial burden on the family.
What is a TBI evaluation on the medical side?
- Can the victim work?
- Can the victim live independently?
- Is the victim protected against discriminatory hiring practices if they attempt to work?
- What medical interventions may improve the prognosis of the victim?
An attorney with the necessary experience will look at everything that could assist after suffering Traumatic Brain Injury resulting from someone else’s negligence. The evaluation will most likely include multiple parts. Later in this article, we discuss “Life Care Plans” and how they can play a role in TBI recovery.
The first things a Personal Injury lawyer may ask for are:
- Records of hospitalization to determine how much assistance is necessary to help the victim recovery Quality of Life. “QoL”.
- Accident reports
- Police reports
- Any diagnostic imaging in order to pursue Accident Recreation and provide Demonstrative Aides during mediation or trial.
What is a Life Care Plan?
A Life Care Plan addresses the specific needs of a client who sustains severe injuries. Injuries that require a Life Care Plan range from brain injuries to amputations. Any accident that causes the client to sustain a catastrophic loss of autonomy may require a Life Care Plan. Life Care plans are there to better assist in restoring Quality of Life for these individuals.
There is no specific outline for a Life Care Plan’s preparation. Thus, it remains necessary for the Plan to be sustainable in regard to the medical needs of the individual client. Doctors and legal experts coordinate in order to prepare a document that outlines the client/patient’s specific care needs. Each client has different needs and preferences and these are always taken into consideration. The client has a say in their Life Care Plan if they have the cognitive function to provide input.
Victims of TBI often require extensive care upon returning home. The following necessities can be found within a Life Care Plan:
- Round-the-clock home health care aides (nurses, attendants, physical therapists, occupational therapists).
- Disabled access at home (ramps, lowered sinks and toilets, safety bars and wheelchair access in bathtubs/showers).
- Hospital bed in a home care setting (this occurs when the victim cannot ascend and descend the stairs in their own home upon returning).
- Assistance with cooking, bathing, dressing, and taking medications
- Accessible vehicles and an aide to drive the victim to doctor’s appointments, errands, etc.
What are your rights when pursuing a Florida Personal Injury lawsuit?
When a Florida TBI case moves to court or trial, the attorney uses a specific principle of liability. The “negligence” principle of liability is always necessary to provide proof that a doctor owes a reasonable duty of care.
Those who sustain Traumatic Brain Injury are entitled to pursue a lawsuit against those responsible for causing them harm. Consulting a Florida Personal Injury lawyer with experience ensures that every avenue to recovering compensation is made available. Compensation can ease the financial burden of pain and suffering.