For victims of a traumatic brain injury (TBI), life can change drastically in an instant. Although the causes and outcomes of TBIs vary from case to case, one thing holds true. Head injury survivors may suffer physical, cognitive, emotional, communicative and psychological impairments that impact their lives and those of their families forever.
How Are Traumatic Brain Injuries Caused?
A traumatic brain injury occurs when a sudden and severe blow or jolt to the head, or a penetrating head injury, disrupts the normal function of the brain. As the brain strikes the inside of the skull, it can cause bruising of the brain, tearing of the nerve fibers and bleeding. If the impact causes a skull fracture, a broken fragment may even puncture the brain tissue. The severity of the injury depends on which region of the brain is affected, as well as the extent of the injury, but TBI is known to be a major cause of disability and even death. Some common causes include:
- Vehicle accidents. Road collisions involving cars, motorcycles, bicycles and even pedestrians are one of the most common causes of traumatic brain injury.
- Falls. Whether from a ladder or bed, down the stairs or in the bath, falls often cause severe head injury. Young children and older adults are the most vulnerable to these accidents.
- Sports injuries. Extreme sports such as bungee jumping, rock climbing and skiing have the potential to cause severe head injuries. But even more ordinary high-impact sports — such as soccer, football, boxing, skateboarding and hockey — can cause severe injury as well.
- Physical aggression. This includes acts of violence, from domestic and child abuse to gunshot wounds and other assaults.
How Do Traumatic Brain Injuries Affect Your Life?
It is possible for some head injury survivors to recover and rehabilitate after an accident. However, the effects of a traumatic brain injury can be long-lasting and, in many cases, permanent. As a result, most victims will face life challenges that will require them to adjust to a new reality with a physical or mental disability.
In fact, multiple severe injuries — otherwise known as polytrauma — is a hallmark of traumatic brain injury, which means many patients will face additional disabilities as a result of the accident. Traumatic injuries to the brain can affect the mind and body in various ways, from motor skills and cognitive abilities, to sensory and perceptual effects, to social-emotional changes, and more, including:
Motor difficulties and other physical effects:
- Chronic pain
- Muscle stiffness or uncontrolled movements
- Problems walking, talking or swallowing
- Loss of fine motor skills, such as preparing a meal
- Vision problems
- Inability to recognize something based on touch
- Difficulty regulating body temperature
- Appetite changes
- Loss of control of bowel and bladder functions
- Difficulty with focus and concentration
- Memory problems
- Difficulty with language processing
- Slow speed of processing
- Executive function problems, including planning, cognitive flexibility and abstract thinking
Understanding Traumatic Brain Injury Settlements
The average settlement for a traumatic brain injury varies widely, depending on the extent and location of the injury. Some commonly asked questions about pursuing compensation include the following.
What’s the Average Settlement Amount for a Traumatic Brain Injury?
This will be affected by the severity of the injury; someone who receives a multi-million dollar settlement likely suffered a severe injury and has been significantly incapacitated as a result. It also depends on what type of accident caused the injury — for example, a road accident with an uninsured driver. If the victim wasn’t carrying underinsured motorist’s insurance, they could be facing millions in medical expenses, with no means to receive compensation. Regardless, if you were involved in an accident due to another’s negligence, you’ll want the help of a skilled attorney who can assess your injury-related costs and pursue all available options for compensation.
How Does a Traumatic Brain Injury Settlement Work?
The process of seeking damages from a traumatic brain injury can be very complicated to navigate alone. That’s why it’s best to partner with a lawyer who has the expertise and medical experience to pursue your case and increase the amount of your traumatic brain injury workers comp settlement. Even if you settle, it’s still necessary to make sure you cover all possible grounds for compensation — which can be tricky. The damages you may be entitled to include:
- Past and future medical expenses. Any related medical costs you have incurred can be proven by receipts and can be reimbursed. Future medical expenses will be estimated by an expert and are also grounds for compensation.
- Past and future loss of income. If your injury prevented you from being able to work, you can collect compensation. An expert will estimate how much income you stand to lose in the future, based on your job and education.
- Pain and suffering. This award addresses the damages you’ve suffered that cannot be reflected in medical expenses, such as mental or emotional pain. If the injury involved disfigurement or was to a sensitive part of the body, pain and suffering compensation is common.
- Loss of consortium. If you’re married, your spouse can file a lawsuit for loss of consortium, which compensates for the spouse’s loss of affection and companionship after your accident.
Notable Traumatic Brain Injury Settlements and Verdicts for JJS Clients
As founding and managing partner of Janet, Janet & Suggs, Howard Janet has led the firm to national prominence with a 40-year track record. Our team has worked on countless medical malpractice and personal injury cases across the country, which have led to multi-million dollar verdicts. We’ve successfully litigated the following cases:
- Delayed C-Section Verdict ($33.5 million): A jury found that delays in performing an urgently needed cesarean section resulted in a baby developing severe brain damage and cerebral palsy.
- Failure to Diagnose Verdict ($24 million): One of the largest medical malpractice jury verdicts ever won in the District of Columbia, obtained for a child who suffered brain damage and cerebral palsy because her doctors failed to properly diagnose and respond to an airway obstruction.
- Fetal Monitoring Errors Verdict ($13.5 million): This record jury verdict in Iowa was obtained for a child’s cerebral palsy caused by brain injury as the result of inconsistent fetal heart monitoring during birth.
Locations We Serve
As a nationally recognized law firm, the skilled attorneys at Janet, Janet & Suggs help traumatic brain injury victims and their families all over the country — including in Baltimore, Chicago, Columbia, NYC, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Charlotte and Des Moines.
How JJS Can Help with Your Traumatic Brain Injury Case
A traumatic brain injury is one of the most devastating events that can happen to an individual. It’s also incredibly challenging to prove the long-term implications of a brain injury, which is why it’s critical to partner with a lawyer who understands the nuances of these traumas.
JJS will fight for the compensation that you and your family deserve. Our traumatic brain injury attorneys have the experience necessary to hold parties responsible for their actions and protect your personal and financial well-being. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your case. We’ll help you decide the next steps in your case so that you and your family can focus on recovery.