Cambridge Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer
Impacts that cause traumatic brain injuries can happen in a variety of circumstances, even where the impact may seem mild. These injuries vary in severity but can lead to life-long complications including diminished cognitive ability and motor skills. Further, victims may be forced to undergo costly and invasive treatments such as brain surgery, physical therapy, and psychological counseling.
When a brain injury results from another person’s negligence, the injury victim has the right to pursue monetary compensation. This compensation will reflect the cost of medical expenses, lost wages, and the pain and suffering that the victim has and will likely experience as a result of their brain injury. If you suspect that you may have suffered a traumatic brain injury and are interested in pursuing legal action, you should seek the help of a Massachusetts traumatic brain injury attorney immediately as you only have a limited time to file your lawsuit.
When dealing with an injury as serious as a brain injury, you deserve serious legal help to match To learn more about your legal options, speak to one of the Cambridge traumatic brain injury lawyers at the Law Office of John Sheehan. To schedule your consultation today, call us at (617) 410-5364.
What Is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
A traumatic brain injury (or “TBI”) is an injury that causes damage to the brain. TBIs affect the way that the brain functions. They are typically caused by a sudden impact to the head or skull. This impact can be characterized as a blow or jolt and does not require direct physical contact. Many TBIs may be mild or present without any symptoms. However, if left untreated, these injuries can turn into serious or even life-threatening conditions.
Common Causes of TBIs
Victims can develop TBIs in a number of different circumstances. All that is required for a TBI is a significant force to the head or neck. Remember, TBIs may occur even without direct contact to the head. Below is a list of the situations that frequently lead to TBIs:
- Car accidents
- Falling objects
- Physical assault or abuse
- Contact sports injuries
- Proximity to explosions
Studies suggest that certain groups of people are more likely to sustain TBIs than others. Specifically, men are significantly more likely than women to develop a TBI. Adults over the age of 65 who sustain TBIs are at significantly higher risk of developing the most serious conditions associated with TBIs.
However, no matter which group you may fit into, TBIs pose a great danger to anyone and everyone. If you suspect that you may have sustained a TBI, seek medical care immediately.
Consequences of a Traumatic Brain Injury in Cambridge
To treat or care for a TBI, most victims must undergo substantial treatments in addition to any necessary surgeries. These treatments are certainly expensive and time-consuming. Victims may also find themselves in need of professional care or residency in a live-in facility. However, you should know that the damages from your successful lawsuit will cover the cost of these treatments all of these treatments and more.
Save copies of all invoices and receipts of medical treatment, such as surgical procedures, hospital stays, physical therapy, and modifications to your home. If your TBI forces you to miss time at work, damages will account for any lost wages. If the consequences of your TBI impact your ability to perform the functions of your job or chosen career path, compensation will be increased to account for your decreased earning potential.
Damages will also account for the pain and suffering that you experience as a result of your TBI. Brain injuries can lead to difficult psychological conditions such as depression and anxiety. In some cases, your TBI may affect your enjoyment of or participation in activities that you previously enjoyed. These psychological costs may last years or even affect you indefinitely. You deserve the compensation that will allow you to recover from the physical and mental toll of your injuries in comfort.
Compensation for Damages from a Traumatic Brain Injury Lawsuit in Cambridge
Victims of traumatic brain injuries are likely to suffer physical, psychological, and financial consequences. If the traumatic brain injury resulted from someone else’s negligent or reckless behavior, the victim may choose to pursue compensation in line with their harms in a Massachusetts court.
Damages in a traumatic brain injury lawsuit are calculated based on a number of different factors. To distinguish the calculation, it is helpful to separate the factors into three separate categories: economic, noneconomic, and punitive damages.
The most straightforward and predictable of the three categories, economic damages account for all of the victim’s harms that are directly related to financial loss. Everything that follows is potentially compensable in a traumatic brain injury lawsuit in Cambridge.
Traumatic brain injuries require substantial medical attention to treat them and prevent them from worsening. This will include hospital stays, imaging tests, specialist appointments, and potentially surgery. Traumatic brain injury victims often have to undergo long-term treatment protocols that will involve physical therapy and prescription medication. If the traumatic brain injury leads to the development of psychological conditions that require attention, victims may also face the burden of paying for psychological therapy sessions.
If recovery from a traumatic brain injury prevents the victim from meeting the requirements of their job, they may lose wages, paid time off, or opportunities for advancement in their career. If the effects of the injury diminish the victim’s ability to perform in their role for an extended or indefinite period of time, they may suffer a decrease in earning potential or even a loss of educational or training value.
If the consequences of the injury are so severe that the victim is no longer able to care for themselves as they once did, live-in care or space at an assisted living facility may factor in as a cost of the injury.
Though not quite as tangible as loss of income or medical bills, non-economic damages make up a substantial portion of recovery for traumatic brain injury plaintiffs. This is because the pain and suffering associated with a traumatic brain injury is just as real as the financial costs.
Traumatic brain injuries have the potential to wreak havoc on a victim’s ability to enjoy their life as they once did. Changes in brain function can impact a victim’s state of mind and their relationships with loved ones. Common psychological conditions associated with traumatic brain injuries, such as anxiety and depression, can complicate life after the injury while the victim is attempting to get back to normal. Chronic pain and the potential for reinjury can impact the victim’s ability to participate in activities that they once enjoyed.
Non-economic damages are difficult to estimate because they depend on the condition of the defendant both before and after they sustain their traumatic brain injury. Our experienced Cambridge traumatic brain injury attorneys can work with you to estimate the value of noneconomic damages in your potential lawsuit.
While economic and non-economic damages are available in almost every case, punitive damages are only awarded in certain circumstances. To assess punitive damages, the court must find that the defendant’s conduct was so reckless, intentional, or indifferent to the well-being of the victim that it warrants punishment beyond the specific damages that the victim suffered. As such, punitive damages for traumatic brain injuries are determined based on the conduct of the defendant rather than the harms to the plaintiff.
Common instances where punitive damages may be awarded for traumatic brain injuries include physical assault or drunk driving car accidents. If there is a criminal case against the defendant on the same issue, the outcome of that case will not impact your recovery for your civil suit. Though punitive damages are not available in every case, they can be substantial where offered, so it is in your best interest to speak with a Cambridge traumatic brain injury lawyer about what you stand to gain from your lawsuit.
When Should I Contact a Lawyer About a Traumatic Brain Injury in Cambridge?
If you believe that you have sustained a TBI, your first step should always be to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Your health is your first priority. Further, attending to your injuries quickly sends a message to others (specifically, a jury) that you recognize that your injuries are serious. Even if you are not experiencing symptoms, it is in your best interest to get a thorough evaluation.
Once your injuries have been assessed and diagnosed, you should speak to a Cambridge traumatic brain injury attorney as soon as possible. The medical expenses for treatment and rehabilitation from a TBI can pile up fast. It is best to get the process (which may take some time) started up quickly.
If you are concerned about your ability to afford your recovery and pay for legal assistance, you should know that our attorneys will work on a contingency fee structure. This is a creative payment structure where our attorneys will receive a percentage of your ultimate recovery amount. In other words, we get paid when you get paid, and we get more when you get more.
Statute of Limitations for Traumatic Brain Injury Lawsuits in Cambridge
You do not have unlimited time to file your lawsuit claiming negligence as the cause of your traumatic brain injury. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts sets the statute of limitations (or legal deadline for filing a personal injury lawsuit) at three years from the date of the injury. In other words, if you do not file your lawsuit less than three years after you sustain the injury, you likely will not be able to recover or even try your case in court.
Some exceptions may exist to the statute of limitations that could potentially open the door on claims that may have otherwise expired. For instance, if a potential plaintiff’s traumatic brain injury amounts to a mental disability, the clock may not start until the disability has been substantially “remedied.” These exceptions can be narrow and vague. Therefore, you should not rely on them to sustain your case beyond the three years. The sooner you file your lawsuit, the sooner you will see financial compensation for your injuries.
While three years may seem like an eternity, filing a lawsuit takes longer than you may think. This is particularly true in cases of traumatic brain injury, as the damages are often more complicated and require expert medical opinions to substantiate. By calling a Massachusetts traumatic brain injury lawyer today, you can put yourself in the best possible position to recover for your injuries without missing the state deadline on your claim.
Contact a Cambridge Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney as Soon as Possible
To learn more about how the Cambridge traumatic brain injury lawyers at the Law Office of John Sheehan can help, call (617) 410-5364 today to get a free initial case assessment.