The human organism possesses great capacities of adaptation and ingenuity to favor the creation of elements that can make human life easier. The brain is one of those organs that science is still discovering every day.
Many of the functions of this marvelous organ are still a mystery to science. It is not entirely clear how geniuses achieve the feats they do or how anyone can adapt their body to withstand extreme temperatures, like the athletes who have climbed the Himalayas. In all these events, the human brain was involved.
Over the years, human brains evolved to the point where they discovered technology, digital tools, new forms of communication, and new means of transportation, such as airplanes or space travel.
There have been no limits to the brain. However, this organ could turn out to be, at the same time, a susceptible part of the body to damage from the outside. A blow after a fall or a violent impact could affect the functioning of the parent organ of the human body, and the consequences could be devastating and challenging to solve.
Traffic accidents in Brooklyn have more than once resulted in brain injuries to victims. At The Ward Law, our TBI Lawyers have received hundreds of such cases, and in all of them, we have always recommended a thorough and prompt medical evaluation. That is why we have seen so many people recover from these injuries because they started treatment early and followed experts' recommendations.
Everything is not lost after a brain injury; with the proper follow-up, the prognosis, if some veins of the brain are not permanently affected, should be a prognosis for recovery. However, not all cases are the same.
Certain risk factors, such as not wearing a helmet properly, riding at extreme and reckless speeds, or being thrown into the air after impact with a larger car, could result in the driver of the vehicle or pedestrian who suffers such an impact not living to tell the tale.
When we first started in the legal field of accidents of all kinds, our professionals did not know precisely the types of injuries triggered by these events. Over time we became experts in identifying these events.
After years of working alongside healthcare professionals who helped speed the recovery of hundreds of our clients, we can say that we have seen them all—injuries of all kinds.
Emotional and physical consequences. We cannot deny that brain injuries are the ones we would least like to see while helping a client because of the dire consequences it could have.
However, we are also not afraid to take on the responsibility of helping someone with this type of injury. Instead, we see it as a challenge to build a case in which we can pursue a commensurate and satisfactory compensation to recover as much as possible in damages.
It is curious how the legal and medical sectors can be closely linked in the wake of catastrophic incidents involving human health. This also supports our position that to obtain a satisfactory outcome in this type of accident and to be able to come out successful in both the legal and medical aspects, it is necessary to provide a holistic approach that takes into account the various aspects that revolve around a person going through such a critical situation.
These aspects can range from the emotional and physical environment accompanying the victim to optimism, some spiritual support, and advice from a competent legal professional.
Our law firm has taken the time to analyze these types of brain injury accident cases in Brooklyn to share valuable information with our entire community so that victims of these types of events can be empowered to deal with these situations without problems. Join us as we review the highlights and become a more informed Brooklyn citizen.
Importance of seeking expert legal advice from a Brain Injury attorney following a traumatic brain injury accident.
As we have described before in other posts we have made on these topics, efficient legal advice from a traumatic brain injury lawyer is crucial to obtain the desired results. Navigating the procedures and deadlines involved in the New York legal system on your own can be an unnecessary waste of time. It is better to optimize every step you take from the beginning of the process to the final part where the compensation you will obtain for your damages is determined.
However, a mistake in the deadlines or in the documents that will help to support your position could bring negative consequences for your interests, and that is precisely what you will avoid as long as you are fully advised by our professionals. We will help you identify the best arguments to obtain a solid case and an efficient response from the authorities in charge of your case.
Some of the most relevant points on which one of our professionals will advise you are the following:
- Complexity of TBI Cases: Traumatic brain injury is not like a simple head injury; these cases can be legally intricate, necessitating specialized legal expertise to navigate the complexities.
- Determining Liability: Expert legal help can determine who is at fault for the accident and who should be held responsible for your TBI. Car accidents can be complex. An appropriate research should be done to determine liability and recover compensation.
- Insurance Negotiations: Experienced attorneys can handle negotiations with insurance companies to ensure you receive fair compensation regarding medical care, medical bills, and damages.
- Maximizing Compensation: Legal professionals can help victims maximize their compensation by considering long-term medical costs and the impact on future quality of life.
- Understanding Legal Timelines: Lawyers are well-versed in legal deadlines, ensuring that crucial steps like filing claims and lawsuits are done promptly.
- Evidence Collection: Skilled attorneys can gather essential evidence, such as medical records and accident reports, to build a robust case.
- Expert Witnesses: Lawyers can engage expert witnesses to testify on your behalf, providing credible opinions on the extent of your injuries and their consequences.
- Fighting Legal Battles: Legal representation is invaluable if your case goes to court, as lawyers will advocate for your rights and interests.
- Ensuring Fair Settlements: Legal professionals work to ensure you aren't pressured into accepting inadequate settlements from insurance companies.
- Peace of Mind and getting rid of stress: Knowing you have a dedicated legal team can provide peace of mind during a challenging recovery process, allowing you to focus on healing.
Types of Brain Injuries Handled
As mentioned above, the health diagnosis and the evaluation of the case from a legal perspective can be integrated approaches with the objective of resolving the case in the most efficient way for the interests of our clients.
That is why identifying the types of brain injuries that were caused after the impact can also help identify the best legal strategy to apply and the definition of the compensation to be obtained.
Traumatic brain injuries encompass a range of conditions that can have life-altering consequences. When seeking legal assistance, working with professionals with experience handling various types of brain injuries is essential.
We asked our professionals and our medical friends to help us draw up a list of the most common brain injuries following this type of accident, and they mentioned the following as the most relevant:
- Concussion: Often considered a mild TBI, concussions can still lead to cognitive and physical impairments.
- Diffuse Axonal Injury: A severe TBI caused by violent shaking or rotation of the head, leading to widespread damage within the brain.
- Contusion: These are bruises or bleeding within the brain, often caused by a direct impact on the head.
- Anoxic Brain Injury: Occurs due to a lack of oxygen supply to the brain, resulting in potentially severe damage.
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): A broader category encompassing various brain injuries resulting from trauma.
- Acquired Brain Injury (ABI): Brain injuries are not present at birth but develop later in life, often due to accidents, strokes, or infections.
- Penetrating Brain Injury: Caused by an object penetrating the skull, leading to localized brain damage.
- Shaken Baby Syndrome: Infants can suffer TBIs when shaken violently, which can have severe, long-term effects.
- Coup-Contrecoup Injury: This occurs when the brain is injured on both the impact side and the opposite side due to the force of an accident. Medical treatment is requested immediately.
- Second Impact Syndrome: A rare but severe condition where a second concussion occurs before the first fully recovers, often resulting in catastrophic consequences.
These injuries vary in severity, but all require expert legal representation to secure the appropriate compensation for victims and their families.
Legal Rights of Brain Injury Victims
The objective of the legal framework that regulates the coexistence of human beings in large cities is not to leave any victim without adequate reparation. To this end, rights that should be inalienable in a balanced scenario have been identified.
However, in accidents, this legal balance is often broken, and after an investigation of the details, responsibilities must be determined.
- Compensation for Medical Expenses: Brain injury victims can seek compensation for all current and future medical bills related to their injury, including hospitalization, surgeries, medications, and therapy.
- Loss of Earning Capacity: If the injury affects a victim's ability to work, they can pursue compensation for their reduced earning capacity, including lost wages and potential future income.
- Pain and Suffering: Victims are entitled to seek damages for the physical and emotional pain and suffering they endure due to the brain injury.
- Rehabilitation Costs: Brain injury victims often require extensive rehabilitation, including physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy, which should be compensated.
- Future Care Needs: Those with severe brain injuries may need lifelong care and assistance, and they have the right to seek compensation for these ongoing costs.
- Loss of Consortium: Spouses and family members affected by the victim's brain injury may also have legal rights to seek compensation for the loss of companionship, affection, and support.
- Adaptive Equipment: Brain injury victims may need adaptive equipment, such as wheelchairs or assistive technology, which should be included in their claims.
- Home Modifications: In some cases, home modifications are necessary to accommodate the needs of a brain injury victim, and the costs can be claimed.
- Punitive Damages: In cases of extreme negligence or intentional harm, victims may seek punitive damages to punish the responsible party and deter similar behavior.
- Legal Fees: Brain injury victims have the right to recover their legal fees, ensuring they can pursue justice without financial burden.
- Preservation of Evidence: Victims should take immediate steps to preserve evidence, as it can significantly impact their legal rights and the success of their case.
- Statute of Limitations: Understanding the statute of limitations is crucial, as it sets the time limit for filing a brain injury claim. Victims should seek legal counsel promptly to ensure they don't miss the deadline.
To determine which situation or possible compensation argument applies to your case, a personalized assessment must be made. Contact us for a free evaluation.
Brooklyn and New York State Laws on Brain Injuries
New York’s No-Fault Insurance Law and its limitations:
Under New York's No-Fault Insurance Law (NYIL), accident victims are entitled to certain benefits, regardless of fault. However, this system has limitations, especially for victims of severe brain injuries. NYIL typically covers basic economic losses such as medical expenses and lost wages.
Victims with serious brain injuries often exceed these limits, making it necessary to seek compensation from at-fault parties through a personal injury lawsuit. For instance, New York Insurance Law Section 5102(d) defines what constitutes a "serious injury" eligible for legal action, which can include severe brain injuries.
Comparative Negligence in New York:
New York follows the doctrine of comparative negligence (CPLR Article 14), which means that even if a brain injury victim is found partially at fault for an accident, they may still recover damages.
However, their compensation will be reduced in proportion to their level of responsibility. This principle emphasizes the importance of proper legal representation to ensure a fair evaluation of fault in brain injury cases.
Legal Definitions of Brain Injury under New York Law:
New York law recognizes various types of brain injuries. For instance, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is defined under New York State Public Health Law Section 2999-cc as an acquired injury to the brain caused by an external physical force, resulting in total or partial functional disability or psychosocial impairment.
Understanding these legal definitions is crucial for determining the appropriate legal course of action and seeking proper compensation under New York statutes and regulations.
By considering these legal aspects alongside specific New York statutes and regulations, brain injury victims can navigate the complex legal landscape effectively and ensure they receive the compensation they deserve under the law.