Brain Injuries Change People’s Lives
We have represented victims of auto accidents with a wide variety of both types and severity of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Such injuries can range from mild concussions to severe brain injury causing catastrophic life changes. Any TBI raises the stakes in an auto accident claim, for you and for the driver of the vehicle that hits you and their insurer.
Evaluating brain injuries can be complex. Concussions can have very serious and long-term consequences even if there is no observable brain injury on medical imaging. The brain is very susceptible to damage from the forces generated in vehicular collisions. The brain can be knocked back and forth against the inside of the skull, causing permanent injury. In many cases, there is a fact issue of whether there was loss of consciousness and for how long, since some doctors see that evidence as crucial to a claim of serious TBI.
You need attorneys and experts trained in evaluating serious brain injury. A neuropsychologist can administer a battery of tests that can identify loss of brain function that shows a pattern typical of traumatically injured brains. These tests can be combined with other evidence demonstrating significant loss of brain function—which is critically important for any adequate compensation settlement or verdict. It is the attorney’s job to bring together all of the evidence showing the nature and extent of the brain injury, how this injury was caused by the accident, and how the injury is likely to affect the client and their family into the future.
Even what seems like a straightforward claim can become very contested and difficult. If the injuries are serious, you should be consulting with a lawyer as soon as possible to protect your rights. It can be critical to do an investigation immediately while the scene of the accident is preserved and witness memories are fresh. You can be sure the insurance company or governmental entity liable for the driver’s negligence will be investigating this accident right away! Don’t let them get to witnesses first if you can help it. It is simply reality that a witness’s memory can be influenced by the person asking the questions and even put something in writing which is not the whole story.
We investigate in a thorough and ethical way, making sure the true story is preserved and liability is carefully established so you can concentrate on healing from your injuries.
We have handled cases that settled for millions of dollars and handled lesser brain injury cases without serious permanent harm that were still a significant factor in achieving a reasonable award for the client. Often, when we begin representing clients in such cases, usually soon after the accident occurs, the long-term effects of the brain injury are not clear. What is clear, however, is that these are serious cases and that we need to handle them with the seriousness they deserve.
Our goal, as with any injury case we handle, is to maximize your recovery through ethical and thorough representation. We take our responsibilities to you and your family seriously. We recognize that if there has been a serious brain injury, you will be very apprehensive about the future. We will do our best to reassure you that your legal rights are protected and work to make sure you get the compensation you deserve.
Like with any injury that is catastrophic like severe brain injury, amputations, or severe spinal injury, there is often inadequate insurance coverage from the driver causing the accident. Insurance companies will mightily resist any inquiry into their policy limits. An experienced attorney can usually get the insurance company to reveal such limits because they know that they would be required to reveal the limits if a lawsuit was filed.
If the driver is employed by a governmental entity or a large employer and the accident occurs in the course of their employment, that may relieve coverage concerns. If there is a roadway design issue, that also may be something worth looking into carefully.
Part of the evaluation of a TBI, therefore, involves assessing possible sources of coverage. If there are no other entities at fault, insurance is limited, and the at-fault driver does not have significant assets, the best advice may lead to an early settlement for policy limits without costs and lawyer’s fees eating up the net amount that would better go to the injured person and their family. We have represented many individuals and families with catastrophic injuries. We take our job very seriously. There is a balance to be reached in trying to find the best result for the client. Sometimes that means recommending a settlement. Sometimes that means filing a lawsuit and aggressively pursuing defendants in court. You need experienced lawyers who can advise you which way you should go and help you get the best result. Whether through settlement or trial, we will help you get that result.
Start with a free, confidential case review.
If you or someone you love has suffered from a serious brain injury, SGB is here to help. Let us help you. There is no charge for us to review your potential claim. If we take your case, we do so on a contingency basis, meaning that you don’t pay our fees unless we successfully resolve the claim in your favor. Contact us for a free, confidential case review or call us at 1-800-809-2234.