Santa Ana Brain Injury Lawyers
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) can be devastating. In fact, some TBIs can be so severe that you’re forced to alter or completely overhaul your lifestyle. A TBI may render you unable to work, making it difficult to earn a living, and your disability could force you to rely on your family and loved ones for help.
If you’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury in an accident in Santa Ana, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact the Santa Ana personal injury lawyers of OnderLaw, LLC. You can either give us a call at (314) 963-9000 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We can review your case and advise you about what legal options you have and whether you may be eligible for compensation.
Causes of Traumatic Brain Injuries
TBIs occur when excessive force or pressure is put on the head or skull. Some of the most common causes of TBIs include:
- Motor vehicle collisions
- Violence, abuse, or neglect
- Sports injuries
- Explosive blasts or other combat injuries
- Self-inflicted injuries
Types of Traumatic Brain Injuries
There are several different types of TBIs. Of course, the type and severity of your TBI will depend on the type of accident you were involved in, as well as the amount of force or pressure that was put upon your body. Generally, TBIs can be separated into two broad categories:
- Closed brain injury. A closed brain injury is when injury occurs without penetration of the brain or a break in the skull. This type of brain injury can occur in car accidents, falls, and sports.
- Penetrating brain injury. A penetrating brain injury is when something breaks through the skull and into the brain. This type of brain injury can occurs through violence, such as a gunshot to the head or some other penetrating force.
The most common type of TBI is a concussion, otherwise known as a mild TBI. Concussions are almost always closed brain injuries. They can result from events like motor vehicle collisions, falls, and high-contact sports.
Compensation for a Traumatic Brain Injury Claim
Compensation for a TBI claim can’t be calculated without a review of your specific case, injuries, and records. The amount and types of compensation you can expect to receive depend on the severity of your injuries and the duration of your recovery. A TBI injury victim could be eligible for any of these types of compensation:
- Medical expenses. No matter the severity of your TBI, it’s crucial that you seek medical attention right away. Should you delay seeking the opinion of a licensed medical professional or refuse medical attention, your TBI may worsen, and your condition could become far more severe than what it seems to be initially. You’re likely to incur a number of medical bills associated with your TBI. Medical expenses include ambulance rides, doctor and hospital visits, x-rays, MRIs, prescriptions, rehabilitation therapy, emergency room visits, and more.
- Lost wages. Your TBI may force you to take time away from work to focus on recovery. During your time away from work, you’ll temporarily lose your ability to earn a living for yourself. When you’re dealing with a TBI, the last thing you’ll want to worry about is how you’ll continue to afford your living expenses, food, and other necessities while you’re trying to pay for all those new medical bills. Fortunately, you can seek compensation for your lost wages.
- Lost earning capacity. If your TBI prevents you from returning to work or performing your work at full capacity, you may find yourself wondering how you’ll take care of yourself. You can pursue compensation for your lost earning capacity. The compensation you could obtain includes past, present, and future lost earning capacity.
- Property damage/loss. If your personal property was damaged, destroyed, or lost in the accident, you can seek compensation for repairs or replacement of those items.
- Pain and suffering. You’re likely to experience a great deal of pain and suffering from the injuries you sustained. As a result, you’re entitled to seek compensation for that trauma.
- Emotional distress. The accident and resulting injuries may have been so traumatic that you developed emotional disturbances or mental health disorders, such as depression, anxiety, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Some of these disorders may be comorbid, meaning that you can be affected by two or more of these disorders at the same time. When you’re affected by any of these or other disorders, you can experience a decline in your quality of life. However, you can seek to recover damages for the emotional distress you suffered because of the accident.
- Loss of enjoyment. Following the accident, you may be unable to participate in recreational or other activities which brought you joy prior to becoming injured or disabled. If this is your new reality, you can seek compensation for your loss of enjoyment of life.
- Exemplary damages. Exemplary damages are awarded in cases where it’s evident that the injuries you’ve sustained were caused by another person’s willful, malicious intent to cause you harm. Exemplary damages are only awarded by a judge or jury and will not appear in a settlement. In order to convince the court that exemplary damages should be ordered, you must show that the at-fault party acted with malice, oppression, or fraud.
Proving Negligence in California
In California, negligence is when another person fails to exercise caution and good judgment when performing a duty or activity. That said, in order to prove negligence in California, you’ll need to provide sufficient evidence that another person owed you some type of duty. For example, if you’re on the road, other drivers owe it to you to obey traffic laws just as you owe it to them to do the same. Next, you’ll need to show that the other person failed to follow through on their duty, which led to an accident that caused your injuries. In keeping with the example above, say that you were preparing to make a right turn at a green light, and another driver ran a red light, colliding with your vehicle and causing you harm.
If you’re able, it’s important that you document details regarding your accident before, during, and following the incident. This way, when you’re ready to file a personal injury claim, you have evidence to support your claims.
Statute of Limitations on Personal Injury Lawsuits
The statute of limitations on personal injury lawsuits in the state of California is two years from the date of injury. If you seek to file a lawsuit beyond this deadline, your case will likely be dismissed, and you’ll lose the ability to pursue compensation through the court system.
Santa Ana Accident Statistics
We’ve compiled some statistics on TBIs to emphasize just how common this type of injury is. Here’s a glimpse into the reality of how devastating TBIs can be:
- According to the EpiCenter, a division of the California Department of Public Health, 22,131 citizens suffered a traumatic brain injury requiring hospitalization in 2015.
- Data collected by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reveal that 224,000 people were hospitalized for TBI-related issues in 2017.
- Additionally, the CDC reported that men are overwhelmingly more likely to sustain a TBI than women, and falls are the number one unintentional cause of TBIs in males (6.1 versus 3.2).
Why Do I Need a Lawyer?
There are several reasons why it’s in your best interest to have a skilled lawyer on your team. An attorney can investigate your claim, seek relevant medical information and documents, and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf. Additionally, should your claim be denied, a lawyer can help you identify your next steps and file a lawsuit if required.
Not only can an attorney help you work through the logistics of your claim, they can also help to ease the emotional burden that comes with filing a personal injury claim. For these reasons and more, you can focus on recovering more fully from the injuries you’ve sustained while an experienced lawyer works to try and secure the compensation you deserve.
Why Choose OnderLaw, LLC?
For nearly two decades, OnderLaw, LLC has been the go-to law firm for those involved in accidents in the Santa Ana area and beyond. Our team is experienced in handling personal injury cases of all types, and throughout the years we’ve been in practice, we’ve recovered over $21 million in damages for those injured in accidents resulting in a TBI.
Our firm and some of our team members are highly decorated, with recognition paid to them by some of the most prestigious legal organizations throughout the U.S. We’re proud to be members of The American Trial Lawyers Association, The American Society of Legal Advocates, and Top Verdict. Simply put: we’ve achieved a lot in our 19 years in practice, and we’re certain we’ll continue to help our clients recover the compensation they deserve while preserving client rights in the process.
Contact a Santa Ana Brain Injury Attorney
If you’ve been injured in an accident that’s left you with a TBI in Santa Ana, contact the team at OnderLaw, LLC today. Contact us online or give us a call at (314) 963-9000 to schedule a free consultation. Remember, our firm won’t require payment from you until we’ve obtained compensation for you.