Catastrophic injuries can change a person’s life forever. There are various types of injuries that could be considered catastrophic including loss of a limb, impaired mobility, loss of vision or other senses, disfigurement, disruption or loss of normal bodily functioning, disabling pain, and cognitive impairments.
Accident victims who suffer catastrophic injuries might have legal remedies and the opportunity to seek damages if someone else’s negligence contributed to the event. Consulting with a skilled personal injury lawyer as soon as possible could be the best thing you do to preserve your rights and secure your family’s future after an accident. A Clayton County catastrophic injury lawyer could keep the case on track and make the best possible argument for the recovery of damages.
What Makes an Injury Catastrophic?
The term “catastrophic injury” means a fundamentally life-changing injury. Someone is considered to have suffered a catastrophic injury if it caused:
- Severe brain injury;
- Amputation of a limb;
- Second or third-degree burns over 25 percent of the person’s body;
- Third-degree burns covering more than five percent of the person’s face or hands; and
In addition, injuries that impact a person’s mobility, cause severe neurological or behavioral disorders, result in obvious disfigurement, prevent the person from working in their chosen profession, or render the person unable to participate in activities they previously enjoyed may be labeled catastrophic. A competent lawyer could attempt to persuade the courts that a particular accident had catastrophic results for the plaintiff.
The Claimant Must Establish Negligence
According to Georgia law, an injured person cannot recoup losses if their responsibility for an accident exceeds 50 percent. If the other party’s negligence is found to be more than 50 percent, the injured claimant may be able to collect monetary damages.
There are several elements to determining negligence. A catastrophic injury lawyer could explain whether a specific case meets the requirements to establish negligence. First, it must be established that the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff, such as adhering to traffic laws while driving a car, or properly maintaining their premises from hazards. The second element is to show that the responsible party breached their duty. Failing to mark a hazard on a sidewalk, driving recklessly, or providing inadequate safety warnings for a product are all examples of breaches of duty.
Next, the claimant must show that the defendant’s breach was the cause of their accident and that the accident would not have happened but for the defendant’s conduct. Finally, the claimant must prove that they suffered physical injuries or other losses because of the accident, such as the inability to work their job or the loss of enjoyment of life.
Claimant’s Fault Could Reduce Damages
Georgia allows a claimant who is partially responsible for an accident to seek damages from others who bear more responsibility. However, the claimant’s share of liability will be taken into account when damages are awarded.
For example, a pedestrian tripped over an unmarked sidewalk hazard and suffered a catastrophic injury, but it was determined that they were texting when the accident occurred. A court could hold the claimant partially liable for their injuries because they were not paying attention.
A savvy local attorney could present evidence to show that parties other than the claimant bear most of the responsibility for an accident.
Get a Clayton County Catastrophic Injury Attorney to Fight on Your Behalf
Recovering from a catastrophic injury can be an arduous process that might never fully heal. A catastrophic injury can affect not only the injured party, but their family as well. The injured person’s family might also have to adjust to a new normal if their loved one’s injury leaves them paralyzed or in need of long-term assistance. Let an experienced attorney in your community help you and your family get the compensation you need.
Allowing a Clayton County catastrophic injury lawyer to handle the negotiations to secure appropriate compensation from liable parties could allow a person to focus their attention on healing. Call today to learn more about how a local attorney could help your case.