If you’ve sustained a traumatic brain injury (TBI) due to someone else’s negligence, you have a right to seek damages.
Since recovery from this type of injury requires substantial personal and financial resources, compensation can make a significant difference. An experienced Lithonia personal injury lawyer from John Foy & Associates can help you find liable parties, prove their negligence, and get the money you deserve.
Proving Who Is Responsible for a TBI
If another party’s negligence led to your traumatic brain injury, they may be responsible for covering your damages. The common liable parties are:
- Motor vehicle drivers – the driver breaks a traffic law and causes a crash that leads to a TBI.
- Manufacturers – the manufacturer designs, assembles, manufactures, and sells a defective product that causes a TBI. They may also be held responsible for failing to provide proper safety instructions.
- Property owners – commercial or residential property owners fail to arrange a reasonably safe environment for their visitors or warn them about possible hazards.
- Healthcare professionals – doctors, hospital staff, and hospitals could act negligently and cause a patient’s TBI.
Liability in a TBI incident isn’t always straightforward. Meanwhile, more than one party may be responsible. You may need to consult an attorney to get assistance with determining the responsible party or parties.
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Four Elements of Negligence in a Traumatic Brain Injury Lawsuit
To recover damages in a traumatic brain injury case, you need to prove that the at-fault party was negligent. This means demonstrating four elements of negligence:
1. The Legal Duty of Care
To be held responsible, the defendant should have a legal duty of care to the plaintiff. For example, a car driver has a duty to act safely and reasonably behind the wheel. Meanwhile, a property owner should make their property reasonably safe for visitors.
2. Breach of the Legal Duty of Care
To be negligent, the defendant has to breach the legal duty of care to the plaintiff. For example, a car driver may run a red light or exceed the speed limit. Meanwhile, the property owner may fail to put guardrails on a steep staircase.
To recover damages, the plaintiff has to prove that the defendant’s breach of the legal duty of care caused the traumatic brain injury.
For example, a speeding car crashed into the plaintiff’s vehicle, and the impact of the collision caused a traumatic brain injury. Meanwhile, the absence of guardrails on the property caused the plaintiff to fall and sustain TBI.
In order to back their claim, the plaintiff has to demonstrate that sustained injuries led to damages. For example, traumatic brain injury required surgery, post-op care, and at-home therapy. Meanwhile, the treatment caused the plaintiff to miss work and lose wages.
In many cases, negligence may seem obvious. However, it’s still your responsibility to prove it. To do that, you may want to consider hiring a Lithonia traumatic brain injury attorney. Otherwise, you may make mistakes that could eventually minimize your payout.
Damages in a TBI Claim
Even seemingly minor TBIs can lead to serious consequences. The lifetime cost of a TBI can vary from $600,000 to $1,875,000 and beyond. That’s why it’s imperative to seek damages to cover current and future expenses.
- Economic damages – these damages can usually be backed by tangible evidence that includes bills and reports. For example, medical bills, surgery costs, prescription drug costs, therapy, lost wages, and loss of earning capacity.
- Non–economic damages – these damages have to do with the physical and emotional consequences of the injury. For example, loss of consortium and loss of enjoyment of life. Since severe TBIs often lead to disabilities, non-economic damages can be sizable.
- Wrongful death damages – every year, around 50,000 Americans die from the consequences of TBIs. If it happened to your loved one, you can seek wrongful death damages that include funeral and burial expenses as well as loss of companionship, inheritance, and support.
If you aren’t sure about the extent of your injuries, don’t rush to file a claim. You may not realize how many expenses are in store for you. Take the time to obtain an extensive evaluation from your healthcare provider. It can help your attorney come up with a reasonable figure.
The Statute of Limitations for a TBI Lawsuit in Georgia
TBI injuries are often debilitating. They may keep you from filing a lawsuit on time. In Georgia, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases is two years. The exceptions to this statute are:
- Age – if the person who sustained an injury is a minor, they have two years from the time they turn 18 to file a claim.
- Mental incapacity – if the person is mentally incapacitated due to TBI, the clock may start running once the plaintiff is capable of filing a claim.
- Location – if the defendant leaves the state before the plaintiff can file a claim, the clock may start running once the plaintiff finally serves the defendant.
While two years appears to be a long time, putting off legal action could weaken your case. As the months pass, it becomes harder to locate eyewitnesses and collect evidence. That’s why you should consider contacting a TBI lawyer as soon after sustaining a TBI as possible.
What a Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer in Lithonia Can Do for Your Case
An experienced TBI legal professional can help:
- Find liable parties.
- Prove liability and negligence.
- Conduct an investigation, collect evidence, and speak to witnesses.
- Hire expert witnesses.
- Provide professional legal advice throughout the case.
- Negotiate a fair settlement with an insurance company.
- Represent you in court if necessary.
The expertise of your attorney is an important factor that contributes to the final amount of your payout.
Call an Experienced Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney in Lithonia Today
If you suffered a TBI due to someone else’s negligence, don’t wait to take legal action. Hire an attorney to build a strong case and obtain fair compensation.
At Jon Foy & Associates, we have a strong team of lawyers who focus on recovering TBI damages. Call us for a free consultation today.