The term catastrophic injury covers all injuries that are life-changing such as head injuries, spinal cord injuries, etc. As such, seeking compensation is paramount to prevent further losses. However, for this to happen, you need the services of an experienced Smyrna catastrophic injury lawyer to build a strong, all-inclusive claim.
This is where Jamie Ballard Law comes into the picture. We offer our legal services in Smyrna, Ga, and we only focus on personal injury cases. Therefore, if you are a victim of a catastrophic accident in Georgia, we will help you recover compensation.
Finding the right personal injury lawyer is not easy in Georgia. For this reason, we offer free case review, where you get an opportunity to ask as many questions as you want and receive legal advice and recommendation. It is important to note that we do not get paid if we do not win. That is because we work on a contingency basis. To speak to a catastrophic injury lawyer, call us at 571-331-2381.
What Is a Catastrophic Injury?
The standard definition of a catastrophic injury is any type of injury or damage that is severe or life-changing. Therefore, it can be said it is a type of injury that comes with immediate and future consequences. This is a type of injury that may prevent a person from living a normal life or engaging in meaningful work.
There are many causes or factors that can make an accident catastrophic. However, the bottom line of it all is that it depends on the severity of the injury caused. This can be anything that leads to permanent impairments. Therefore, whenever a person has suffered a catastrophic injury, they have lost a part of their persona. It can range from their ability to work, form thoughts, or function.
Examples of catastrophic injuries are:
- Head and brain injuries
- Severe burns (caused by chemicals, fire, fumes, etc.)
- Spinal cord injuries
- Loss of a limb
What Are the Leading Causes of Catastrophic Injuries in Georgia?
The leading cause of catastrophic injuries in the U.S. is traffic accidents (car accidents, motorcycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and others). According to statistics, there are over 1,720 drivers involved in a car accident in Georgia, every day. This means that over 70 drivers get into an accident every hour. The good news is that majority of these accidents are minor and often do not lead to serious injuries or damage.
However, according to Crash Analysis, Statistics, and Information Notebook, more than 133,557 people get injured in traffic accidents in a year in Georgia. Out of this number 1,145 get serious, life-threatening injuries. An average of 31 people dies every week in Georgia due to accidents.
One out of every six traffic fatalities involves a large truck. Pedestrians are 32 times more likely to be killed in a motor vehicle accident compared to vehicle occupants. One out of every 16 pedestrians involved in a car accident dies.
While traffic-related accidents are the leading cause of catastrophic injuries, they are not the only causes. Slip and falls are another cause of catastrophic injuries.
What Are the Long-Term Effects of Catastrophic Injuries?
A catastrophic accident can occur at any time, no matter the kind of accident you are involved in. It is known to affect a person in different ways. Nevertheless, there are four major ways a catastrophic injury can affect a person. These are:
The leading long-term effect of any type of catastrophic accident is the financial aspect. The injury will surely have an impact on the financial side of things. That is because these types of injuries demand long treatments, advanced medical care, long hospital stays, ongoing therapy, and more. Since all these demand financial support, it will affect one’s financial status. Do not forget the injury may affect future income.
Just like the financial aspect, catastrophic injuries come with long-term effects. Remember, because some of the injuries may affect a person’s ability to move, that person will have to change their lifestyle. Let’s not forget the constant chronic pain. It will affect a person’s ability to enjoy life or participate in activities that made them happy.
All catastrophic accidents must come with bodily or health-related problems. According to reports, it is the most common consequence. Examples of bodily related effects include:
- Memory loss
- Increased risk of seizure and stroke
- Cognitive function impairment
A majority of people suffering from catastrophic injuries find it difficult to go back or find work. That is because many of the catastrophic injuries come with one form of impairment or another. For example, a construction worker may find it difficult to go back to work if they have lost the use of their legs.
Can I Sue for a Catastrophic Injury in Georgia?
It is important to note that Georgia law does not recognize the term catastrophic injury (not a legal term). That is because there is no specific way to determine one has a catastrophic injury. The only thing that makes an injury catastrophic is the severity of the injury suffered. The severity of an injury is measured by the kind of medical care needed, the recovery time, rehabilitation required, and other incapacitating symptoms.
Other symptoms that can make an injury catastrophic are:
- Permanent loss in quality of life
- Permanent disability (such as paralysis)
- The need for constant assistance or live-in care
The victim must prove four elements in a civil court for them to receive compensation. These are:
- Duty of care – The victim must show the offender owed legal obligation. This is the relationship between the two parties.
- Breach of duty of care – The victim must prove the offender violated the legal obligation owed. This involves showing evidence of negligence and failure to observe reasonable care.
- Causation – The victim must link the offender to the accident.
- Damage – The victim must prove they sustained injuries or damage as a result of the accident.
As you are working to prove these four elements in a civil court, it is wise to note Georgia is a modified comparative negligence state. This means that a person can recover damage even if they were partially at fault for the accident. However, if they are found to be more than 50% at fault, they cannot recover damage. The statute of limitation is 2 years starting from the date of the accident.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer for a Catastrophic Injury Claim?
Filing a catastrophic injury claim is not easy as you may think. There are several forms that must be filed, show the evidence, and much more. This is why it is highly important to seek the services of a Smyrna catastrophic injury lawyer. That is because you will benefit in the following ways:
Filing the Case
The sad truth is that our legal system is complicated and demands someone who knows and understands the process. A lawyer will help you through this process.
For a lawyer to provide evidence, they must first collect them. For this reason, a seasoned lawyer knows the evidence that is relevant to the case and where to get them.
A majority of civil cases involving personal injury are often settled out of court through negotiation. For this reason, since a lawyer knows the true worth of your injuries, they will help you get the appropriate amount.
Some cases will get to court due to one reason or the other. In such a case, having a lawyer by your side is a great benefit.
What Types of Damages Can I Recover in a Catastrophic Injury Claim in Georgia?
Damages are categorized into 3 groups. These are:
This includes damages such as lost future income, medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, prescription drugs, and others. As such, it covers all damages that have value or figures to calculate.
This includes damages such as pain, trauma, anguish, loss of companion, sorrow, etc. This means that it covers losses that cannot be seen or calculated.
Whenever the civil court finds the actions of the offender to be malicious, reckless, or cruel, the court will award punitive damages to the victim. This is intended to punish the offender for the incident.
Contact a Smyrna Catastrophic Injury Lawyer Today!
If you have suffered a serious and life-changing injury, Jamie Ballard Law is here to help you with your catastrophic injury case.
There is no doubt that hiring a personal injury lawyer for your catastrophic injury comes with many benefits. On the other hand, it can be challenging to find the right catastrophic injury lawyer for your case. That is why we are offering free case evaluation where you get an opportunity to ask questions, learn more about the technicalities of your case, and learn the best legal action to take. Remember, we work on a contingency basis, which means we do not get paid if we do not win.
If you are a resident of Smyrna, Ga, and looking for an experienced catastrophic injury lawyer, call Jamie Ballard Law today. We offer personalized services because we understand that not all cases are the same. Call us at 571-331-2381.