Personal injury claims and lawsuits deal with different types of injuries. However, there is a certain category of injuries that are especially debilitating for individuals and their families. This is not to discount the seriousness of other types of injuries, for which plaintiffs deserve a chance to seek damages, but to bring attention to how expensive and debilitating catastrophic injuries can be.
What Is a Catastrophic Injury?
A catastrophic injury is a type of injury where a person suffers severe (often permanent) disabilities or deformities that significantly reduce that person’s quality of life and standard of living.
Although catastrophic injuries often affect the brain and spinal cord (and have major functional and cognitive effects on the person), severe burns and crush injuries may also count as a type of physical catastrophic injury. Examples of catastrophic injuries may include:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Brain injuries with major functional impairments
- Burn injuries
- Severe disfigurement
- Organ damage
Catastrophic injuries have lasting and permanent effects that keep people from working and carrying out basic activities. It is not uncommon for catastrophic injuries to result in millions of dollars in damages for plaintiffs and their immediate family members.
For example, a complete C1 spinal cord injury that resulted in tetraplegia is a perfect example of a catastrophic injury. Someone with this type of injury would have no functionality in all four limbs. According to Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, this type of injury could result in more than $4 million in lifetime expenses for a 25-year-old. However, this figure does not take many other costs into account, and the amount in damages is most likely going to be much higher.
Why You May Need a Washington Injury Lawyer
It can be more difficult to recover full compensation for damages associated with a catastrophic injury. These are enormously expensive injuries. You need to ensure that you will receive a settlement or verdict that takes all of your damages, including pain and suffering damages, into account. This is true whether it was you who suffered the injury or a family member.
In a worst-case scenario, Washington’s comparative negligence rule could potentially limit the value of what you eventually receive.
Compensation for a successful catastrophic injury claim can account for damages that include medical bills, medical equipment, home modifications, rehabilitation services, home medical services, lost income, loss of future earning capacity, pain and suffering damages, and damages associated with loss of consortium.
A Washington personal injury attorney can help negotiate a settlement, file a lawsuit, or take the case to a jury trial if necessary. Our attorney can work with medical experts and other professionals to provide additional evidence that offers a true assessment of your damages. In addition, an attorney can hold an insurance carrier accountable for breaking Washington state law.
With injury claims involving catastrophic and general personal injuries, the sooner you hire an attorney, the better protected your claim.
About Our Seattle Personal Injury Law Firm
Our Seattle personal injury law firm can help with injury claims and lawsuits. You may schedule a free consultation with Herschensohn Law PLLC by dialing (206) 588-4344 or by using the contact form on our website.
Seattle personal injury lawyer Zach Herschensohn can help you determine which legal options could be available for your situation.