The human brain controls all of the body’s major functions. An injury to the brain can therefore be tragic and life-altering for the victim. On top of that, the victim’s family must suffer as they watch their loved one struggle with the consequences. No one should have to suffer a brain injury because of another person’s negligence. But when it happens, strong legal representation is needed to hold the wrongful party accountable. The Alexandria brain injury attorneys of Koonz McKenney Johnson & DePaolis LLP are here for you and your family.
Understanding Brain Injuries
Not all brain injuries are the same, but there are generally two categories into which a brain injury will fall: non-traumatic and traumatic. Understanding the difference is key to making a claim for damages after an accident.
These injuries occur because of something inside the brain. But don’t let the name fool you; a non-traumatic brain injury can be just as devastating as a traumatic brain injury. And in many cases, negligence of some kind is to blame. These are a few common examples of non-traumatic brain injuries:
- Hemorrhage, which is bleeding in or around the brain
- Not getting enough oxygen in part of the brain (hypoxic injury)
- Not getting any oxygen in part of the brain (anoxic injury)
- Cancer, infection, disease, and other problems
- Stroke, aneurysm, blood clot, and other cardiovascular issues
A traumatic brain injury is caused by something outside of the brain. It is the result of external force or trauma sustained to the head. These injuries tend to be violent and cause powerful blows that may or may not damage the skull. Usually, the injury is the result of forceful movements and collisions the brain experiences inside the skull.
Why Brain Injuries Happen
A non-traumatic brain injury is often unavoidable, but not necessarily. Medical negligence, also called malpractice, may be responsible. These are typically cases in which a brain condition could have been foreseen and effectively treated had the medical professional exercised reasonable skill and due diligence. Malpractice is more than a mistake; it indicates an error that is unreasonable in light of the circumstances, including the injury itself and the physician’s training and experience.
As mentioned above, traumatic brain injuries are often caused by violent force to the head. The potential causes are therefore numerous. These sometimes result from something like an automobile accident, truck accident, or slip and fall. Failure to fix a hazard on one’s property can also be to blame. The important thing to know is that negligence, in general, is frequently responsible for these injuries.
Who Is To Blame For A Brain Injury?
The responsible party could be a single individual, like a drunk driver, or it may be a number of wrongful parties like a negligent doctor, nurse, and hospital. Your attorney should investigate to determine all possible individuals, businesses, and other entities who may be held liable.
Establishing blame starts with identifying potentially responsible parties, but it doesn’t end there. It’s up to the victim to explain precisely why every individual named as a defendant is liable for the brain injury. That means examining why and how the accident occurred and pointing out specific acts or omissions that constitute negligence.
Proving Damages In Alexandria Brain Injury Cases
Another role of a brain injury attorney is to prove the nature and extent of the victim’s damages. Regardless of whether your case settles outside of court or goes to trial, you only have one chance to get the damages right. After your case settles or is decided by a court, you won’t get to ask for more money. Inexperienced brain injury attorneys don’t understand how to properly value future damages, like medical treatments you may need in the months or years to come.
Depending on your injuries, these are some of the damages you may be eligible for:
- Medical bills, including past, present, and future expenses. They may include costs for hospitalization, surgery, physical therapy, rehabilitation, adaptive medical equipment, and more.
- Lost wages. If you miss time from work during your recovery, the defendant can be ordered to compensate you.
- Lost future earnings. Brain injuries often cut short a promising career, forcing the victim to work below what had been their true potential. Limits you face in your career due to your brain injury may therefore be compensated.
- Pain and suffering. Brain injury victims may endure significant pain and suffering for years or possibly the rest of their lives.
- Emotional distress and similar damages. Brain injuries often cause anxiety, depression, and related mental and emotional problems.
- Loss of enjoyment of life. Your brain injury may make it difficult or impossible to enjoy activities you once loved. The victim can demand damages for this loss.
A skilled brain injury attorney will have a reliable network of expert witnesses who can be called upon to help assign a proper dollar figure to these and other damages. For example, a vocational expert can discuss what sort of impact the brain injury will have on your long-term career prospects. Damages are one of the most hotly contested issues in a brain injury lawsuit, so you need an attorney who understands how to prove your case to a jury.
Contact Our Alexandria Brain Injury Attorney
At Koonz McKenney Johnson & DePaolis LLP, we pride ourselves on standing up for our clients and winning them the compensation they deserve. If you or someone you love has suffered a brain injury, put our experience to the test. Call today to schedule your confidential consultation.