Have you or someone you love been in an accident that resulted in burn injuries? Was this accident caused by another party’s negligence? If so, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. The San Jose personal injury attorneys of OnderLaw have been helping San Jose residents get compensation for burn injuries since 2002, and we can use our experience to help you get the restitution you deserve. Call us for a free consultation, and let us help get your life back after a burn injury.

Why Do I Need an Attorney for My Burn Injury Case?

If your accident caused you severe injury or losses and you believe it was caused by another party’s negligence, you should hire an attorney to assist in preparing your claim. There are several good reasons for this, such as:

Proving a claim can be difficult. Proving that another party was at fault for your injuries takes time and energy. A good attorney can fall back on their experience and resources to help prove your claim. We have extensive knowledge of California injury law that will be invaluable to you, and we can access expert witnesses and investigators that can help make sure your claim is complete and supported by facts.

Insurance companies will do what they have to. Insurance adjusters are paid to protect their customers from liability at all costs, and they will sometimes do and say things that are not entirely forthright to accomplish this goal. They will claim to have your best interests at heart when in reality, they will do whatever they can to minimize your experience, decrease the amount of compensation you’re owed, or deny your claim outright. A good attorney can help you counter these tactics and get the compensation you deserve.

Claims are complex. Personal injury law can be complex, and building a claim takes more than a strongly-worded letter. Certain forms have to be submitted, statutes must be adhered to, and there are myriad opportunities for error. An attorney can help you navigate the complex legal framework of your claim or lawsuit and avoid costly mistakes that can delay your claim or get it denied completely.

Estimating damages takes experience. Compensation for your burn injury depends on the actual damages suffered, but not all of these damages are material. Damages like pain and suffering or loss of enjoyment of life take experience to estimate. A lawyer can review your case and compare it with others like it to make an accurate assessment of your losses. Then we can help you seek compensation for all your losses, physical or otherwise.

We don’t give up. If the negligent party’s insurance company offers you a paltry settlement or denies your claim, we won’t stop there. A good attorney can provide you with options you don’t have on your own, such as filing a lawsuit. We will take whatever time is needed to get you the compensation you deserve for your injuries, even if it means taking your case to trial.

Why Hire OnderLaw for My Burn Injuries?

We have been helping residents of San Jose get compensation for their injuries for almost twenty years. We have decades of combined legal experience, and we’ve received accolades from a variety of organizations and publications for our past work.

We also believe in helping the communities that help us, so we give regular donations to organizations like MADD, Toys for Tots, and Lupus Foundation of America.

But most importantly, we are successful. We’ve obtained over $3 billion in settlements and awards for our clients. We can’t guarantee a positive outcome for your case, but we will represent you with the same fervor and tenacity we have used to get those results.

Common Causes of Burn Injuries in San Jose

Some of the more common causes of burn injuries include the following accidents:

  • Chemical burns
  • Electrical burns
  • Contact with fire or flame
  • Fireworks
  • Sunburns
  • Scalding
  • Thermal burns

Types of Injuries Suffered in Burn Accidents

There are four levels of severity for burn injuries. They’re referred to as first, second, third, and fourth-degree burns.

First-degree burns are damage to the top layer of skin only and are characterized by redness or swelling. Mild sunburn is a first-degree burn.

Second-degree burns damage the first layer of skin and the layer underneath, called the dermis. Second-degree burns will appear swollen, red, wet, and will develop blisters.

Third-degree burns damage all of the skin. They appear black, yellow, or white and are not painful as third-degree burns damage nerve endings as well as skin.

Fourth-degree burns are characterized by damage to the skin, bone, muscle, or tendon. Fourth-degree burns can be life-threatening.

What Kind of Compensation Can I Get for My Burn Injury?

Compensation should cover identifiable losses, or damages, received after an injury. Some of these damages are economic, like medical bills or lost wages, and can easily be counted up and added to your claim. Some damages, or losses, are non-economic and intangible, such as reputational damage or disfigurement. Your attorney can help you decide what losses to claim and how much you should demand in restitution.

You may be eligible for compensation for the following losses:

  • Medical bills. You can demand compensation to recover any losses due to medical treatment required after your injury. This can apply to hospital stays, surgery, tests, emergency room visits, prosthetics, rehabilitation, or therapy.
  • Lost wages. If your injury left you unable to work for any period, you can demand compensation to cover the wages you lost or any wages you will lose in the future.
  • Property Damage. If the accident that caused your burn injury also damaged your personal property, you can demand compensation to cover this loss.
  • Pain and suffering. Compensation for pain and suffering is meant to cover any losses to your quality of life after a burn injury. This can apply to pain, inconvenience, anger, worry, grief, insomnia, or depression.
  • Loss of future opportunity. If your injury leaves you unable to attend planned events, such as a vacation or family event, you can demand compensation to cover the lost time and money.
  • Wrongful death. If a burn injury ends in the worst-case scenario, you, your family, or specific people with a financial interest in the deceased’s estate can file a wrongful death claim for compensation for losses caused by the death.

Proving Negligence in California

California is a comparative negligence state, meaning that if you, the plaintiff, are found to be partially responsible for the accident that caused your injury, your financial award will be reduced by a percentage commensurate with your liability.

For example, imagine that you suffer burns because a cup of hot soup spilled on you at a restaurant in San Jose, and you seek compensation. If it’s discovered later that you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time, you may be found partially liable for your injury. For this scenario, let’s say a judge finds you 15% liable. Any financial award you receive would be reduced by 15%.

In California, liability for your injuries will rest with the party who was liable or whose negligent actions caused the situation that allowed you to be burned. That means you must be able to show that your injuries came about because someone allowed or caused an unreasonably dangerous condition to exist and that if they hadn’t been negligent, you wouldn’t have been injured. If you’re able to prove this either in a claim or lawsuit, you should be able to obtain compensation for your injuries.

California also has a statute of limitations on personal injury claims. Under state law, you have two years after the date of the injury to file a lawsuit for compensation. If the injury was not discovered right away, you have one year from the date the injury was discovered. If you attempt to file a lawsuit after the statute of limitations on injury claims has passed, the court may dismiss your claim without hearing it. Should that take place, you will lose your right to pursue compensation through the court system.

San Jose Burn Injury Statistics

Here are some statistics from the American Burn Association regarding burn injuries in the United States:

  • 73% of burn injuries occur in the home, and eight percent happen at work.
  • In data from 2011-2015, children were 2.4 times more likely to suffer burn injuries that require emergency medical treatment.
  • Almost one-quarter of all burn injuries occur in children under the age of 15
  • Every two hours and 35 minutes in the United States, one civilian fire death occurs.
  • Males are more likely to be treated at a burn unit than females (68% of patients being seen were male)

Call Today for a Free Consultation

If you’ve suffered burn injuries and you believe another party is responsible, don’t wait any longer. Call the attorneys at OnderLaw today to determine if you’re eligible for compensation. Call for a free, no-obligation consultation, and let us help you get the money you need to get your life back on track after a burn injury.