What is a catastrophic injury?

While many injuries heal completely, some are so severe that they result in permanent physical or mental impairments. These are known as catastrophic injuries. Examples of catastrophic injuries include spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injury, paralysis, severe burns and dismemberment. For victims who are unable to return to work, as is most often the case with catastrophic injuries, an award from a personal injury claim may be the victim’s only source of future income. This makes choosing the right attorney a very important decision.

What kinds of injuries would be considered catastrophic?

In general, catastrophic injuries include all types of injuries that cause long-term or permanent injury. It is common for catastrophic injuries to damage the central nervous system, which may in turn damage other bodily systems. Examples of catastrophic injuries are accidental amputation or dismemberment injury, brain injury, blindness, multiple bone fractures, serious head trauma, severe burn injuries, and spinal cord injuries.

How do you determine what future medical needs will be required?

Proper medical attention is essential for all catastrophically injured victims. Beyond initial medical care, victims may require frequent doctor visits and follow-up surgeries in the years to come, depending on the extent of the injury. During the pre-trial process, an attorney will work with doctors, life care planners, and other medical experts to establish the extent of the victim’s injuries and determine their future medical needs. Understanding the complete effects of an injury is essential in ensuring a victim is fully and fairly compensated.

Do catastrophic injuries result from certain types of accidents?

Catastrophic injuries have countless causes. The most common causes are motor vehicle accidents, construction and industrial accidents, and medical malpractice. Other causes are auto defects, birth defects and dangerous drugs and pharmaceuticals. Regardless of the cause, if you have suffered a severe life-changing injury you need legal advice.

What is a complex case?

This describes a case filed in court that is likely to have multiple parties, multiple causes of actions, and requires a substantial investment of time and resources.

Have I waited too long to file a personal injury lawsuit?

In most cases you must file a personal injury lawsuit within two years after the accident happened, so you probably aren’t too late. It’s important to protect your rights by talking with a qualified personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after any catastrophic accident. Even if you think you’ve waited too long, talk to an experienced personal injury attorney now – you might still have a timely claim.

What if the catastrophic accident was partly my fault?

Even if you are partly at fault for the accident that resulted in your catastrophic personal injuries, you may still be able to recover compensation. We can discuss the facts of your accident with you and advise you about your concerns.

What happens if a catastrophic injury victim dies after filing a personal injury lawsuit?

In Pennsylvania the law allows a personal injury victim’s heirs or estate representative to pursue the victim’s claim. The heirs or estate representative can file a personal injury lawsuit after the victim dies; or, if the lawsuit already was on file, then the heirs or estate representative may keep the lawsuit going.

What sorts of compensation are available when someone suffers a catastrophic injury?

Proving the extent of an injury can be a challenge. When another party is at fault and negligently causes an injury, a personal injury claim can ensure financial assistance for medical treatment costs, along with lost wages, reduced earning capacity, future medical expenses and perhaps most significantly, the pain and suffering a victim and their family is forced to endure. An experienced attorney can make all the difference in the outcome of your case. Look for a lawyer who specializes in complex personal injury cases, and has a proven record of success.

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