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What Is TBI Disability?

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December 3, 2023 Personal Injury

A traumatic brain injury, or TBI, may arise when an individual sustains a forceful blow to any part of their head. Individuals frequently experience these injuries in serious car crashes, slip and fall accidents, and other similar circumstances.

Whenever an accident victim suffers a TBI, they require prompt medical care – and they need treatment continuously for their injuries until a medical provider formally discharges them. Otherwise, their TBI may significantly worsen.

In some cases, these injuries lead to permanent disabilities and complications.

If you suffered a TBI in an accident that resulted from someone else’s negligence, you need legal help as quickly as possible.

A knowledgeable traumatic brain injury attorney near you can investigate your accident circumstances and promptly file a personal injury claim with the responsible party’s insurance company.

If the insurance company does not offer you the compensation you need for your TBI disability, your lawyer can pursue a resolution in court.

Throughout the process, your attorney can aggressively fight for your legal interests by negotiating with insurance company representatives and representing you in court.

Your attorney can also answer all your questions, enabling you to make informed and intelligent decisions every step of the way.

Types of TBIs and the Serious Disabilities that Can Arise

What Is TBI Disability?

TBIs and their resulting disabilities come in all shapes and sizes. The type, nature, and extent of a TBI that an accident victim suffers will usually depend upon the force of the accident, the type of accident that occurs, and other related factors.

One of the most common TBIs that an accident victim may suffer is a concussion. A concussion disrupts the brain’s neurons and axons, which relay information between the brain and other body parts.

Short-term concussion symptoms include temporary memory loss, vision impairments, nausea, dizziness, and minor headaches.

However, some concussions may result in permanent disabilities, including:

  • Permanent cognitive impairments
  • Post-concussive migraine syndrome
  • Permanent (and recurrent) headaches
  • Permanent pain in the accident victim’s neck and upper back
  • Frequent nausea and dizziness
  • Permanent or long-term memory losses

Additionally, an accident victim who suffers a TBI disability may fall into a coma, where they cannot respond to external stimuli. The accident victim may enter a permanent vegetative state and must rely on life support to keep breathing and remain alive.

If you or someone you love suffered one of these TBI disabilities, you need to retain a skilled personal injury lawyer in your area who can aggressively advocate on your behalf and fight for your legal interests.

Your attorney can swiftly investigate the circumstances of your accident, as well as the medical treatment that you endured after your accident. Upon gathering the necessary documents, your lawyer may file a personal injury claim on your behalf with the at-fault party’s insurance company and begin negotiating for the fair settlement compensation you deserve for your TBI disability.

Accidents That May Lead to a Severe and Disabling TBI

Many different types of accidents may lead to a severe head injury that results in disabilities and other medical complications.

In any accident where an individual sustains a sharp and forceful blow to their head, they may suffer a TBI.

Some of the most common accidents that lead to head injuries (and which result from others’ negligence) include:

If you or a person you care about suffered a TBI disability in one of these occurrences, you may have legal options.

A personal injury attorney can review your accident with you and, if necessary, retain an accident reconstructionist who can make an independent determination about how the accident occurred and who likely caused it.

Your lawyer may then engage the at-fault party’s insurance company in settlement negotiations and pursue the most monetary recovery you can receive for your TBI disability.

Legally Proving a TBI Disability in a Personal Injury Claim or Lawsuit

To recover monetary compensation in a TBI disability case, the accident victim has the sole legal burden of proof. They must establish several legal elements, or they will not recover monetary compensation for their head injury.

First, the injured accident victim must establish that the at-fault party owed them a legal duty of care. For example, if the accident victim suffered a head injury in a motor vehicle or pedestrian accident, the other driver owed them a duty to drive reasonably safely and carefully by following all traffic laws and regulations.

Additionally, the injured accident victim must show that the other party violated or breached their legal duty of care somehow.

For example, in a motor vehicle accident scenario, the other driver may have broken one or more traffic laws, engaged in distracted driving, or operated their vehicle while they were under the illegal influence of alcohol or drugs.

Next, the accident victim must establish that as a foreseeable and actual result of the other party’s breach, both the accident and their TBI disability occurred.

In other words, they must prove the accident caused their TBI disability. To establish this, your attorney can retain a healthcare provider or other medical expert to testify in your case or draft a medical report. During that testimony (or in their medical report), the medical provider can state, to a reasonable degree of medical certainty, that the TBI disability directly resulted from the accident. In cases where the accident victim suffered a lifelong injury, the expert medical provider can state that on the record.

Additionally, if the insurance company disputes fault for the accident, an attorney can retain a certified accident reconstructionist who can formulate their own opinion and draft a report about how the accident occurred (usually after reviewing police diagrams and photographs), reviewing video footage, and speaking with witnesses to the occurrence.

An accident reconstructionist may also testify at a discovery deposition or civil jury trial in a personal injury case.

Negotiating With the Insurance Company After a TBI

Negotiating With the Insurance Company After a TBI

Insurance companies make negotiating a fair settlement an uphill battle in a TBI disability case. They do not have an incentive to fairly compensate you for your TBI or other accident-related injuries.

Instead, the insurance company wants to resolve your case quickly and cheaply. That way, they can keep as much of their money in-house as possible.

To discredit your case, an insurance company adjuster may try to claim that your TBI pre-dated the accident or that it is otherwise unrelated to the subject occurrence. The adjuster may also argue that you over-treated for your injuries or that you received medical treatment that was not truly necessary, given the nature and extent of your head injuries.

Your attorney can counter the insurance company’s arguments by pointing to favorable medical reports and expert testimony. Your lawyer can also threaten litigation if the insurance company adjuster refuses to compensate you fairly for your TBI disability.

Litigating a TBI Case in the State Court System

If the insurance company denies fault for your accident, or if they simply refuse to fairly compensate you for your TBI disability, you may file a personal injury lawsuit seeking monetary damages.

Because of the statute of limitations, accident victims must file a personal injury lawsuit within two years of their accident in a premises liability case, or three years if it was a motor vehicle accident. Otherwise, they will forever waive their right to recover the monetary compensation they deserve for their head injuries.

During litigation, the parties will engage in discovery, during which time they will typically answer written Interrogatories from the other party’s attorney and submit to discovery depositions. They might also attend in-court proceedings, such as mediation sessions or settlement conferences.

If the parties do not resolve their claim by the end of litigation, they may take their case to a civil jury trial. The jury then decides the outcome of all disputed issues (including monetary compensation).

The parties may also pursue one or more types of alternative dispute resolution, or ADR, such as binding arbitration.

Recoverable Monetary Damages in a TBI Disability Case

A TBI disability may result in lifelong impairments.

For example, a TBI victim may experience ongoing cognitive difficulties or suffer from painful symptoms, including head pain, nausea, or dizziness. This pain and suffering may also affect the accident victim’s overall quality of life and well-being.

First, an accident victim who can prove the legal elements of their claim can receive compensation for their related medical treatment expenses, along with their lost income.

If their permanent cognitive impairments require them to switch jobs and take a pay cut, they may recover compensation for losing their ability to work.

Similarly, an accident victim may receive monetary damages for their intangible or non-economic damages. These damages may compensate the accident victim for their permanent disabilities, permanent cognitive impairments, physical pain, suffering, mental distress, inconvenience, lost quality of life, and loss of the ability to use a body part due to their head injury.

A skilled personal injury lawyer in your area can determine the likely value of your case and provide you with the information you need to make important decisions throughout your case, including whether to accept or reject a pending settlement offer from the insurance company.

Call an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer about a Possible Case Today

If you or someone you love suffered a TBI disability in a recent accident, the most crucial step you can take is to seek out the prompt medical treatment you need to get better.

Given the severe nature of TBIs, the stakes are too high not to take action right away. A TBI can affect victims for the rest of their lives. You must hire a knowledgeable personal injury attorney as quickly as possible.

Keith Fuicelli, Attorney for Brain Injury

Keith Fuicelli, Brain Injury Lawyer

Upon entering into a retainer agreement, your lawyer can swiftly investigate the accident circumstances and determine your eligibility for filing a claim with the at-fault individual or entity’s insurance company.

If you can move forward, your attorney can aggressively represent you during ongoing settlement negotiations and explore litigation options for your case.

If your case proceeds to litigation, your lawyer will aggressively represent you at all court proceedings, introduce evidence, make arguments on your behalf, and do everything possible to maximize the total compensation you receive for your ongoing TBI disability.

Proving the full disabling effects of an invisible injury like a TBI is possible with the right injury attorney handling your claim. Seek your free case evaluation today.

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