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Understanding the Basics of “Catastrophic Injuries” Under Florida Law

new windowIn a moment, your life can change forever. Suffering from any type of injuries, big or small, can be an unnerving experience. When the injury is so severe that it has a long-term impact on your day-to-day life, the experience can be downright traumatic. Victims who suffer serious long-term injuries also have to deal with the emotional, mental, physical, and financial consequences that typically accompany such an injury. South Florida personal injury attorney Robert Dixon is committed to helping victims of serious and catastrophic injuries get the compensation they deserve. While no amount of money can ever make up for an accident, it can help ease the burdensome costs arising from the accident.

What Causes Catastrophic Injuries?

Negligent behavior varies from cases to case, as do the injuries that result from different accidents. The types of accidents that are most commonly associated with catastrophic injuries in the state of Florida include:

  • Car accidents
  • Truck accidents
  • Motorcycle accidents
  • Work-related accidents (e.g., construction accidents)
  • Boating accidents
  • Biking accidents
  • Pedestrian accidents
  • Fire
  • Chemical-related accidents

Pursuing a catastrophic injury claim is no different than filing an ordinary negligence claim. The plaintiff must show that the defendant had a duty to exercise reasonable care, that the defendant breached that duty, that the breach caused the plaintiff’s injuries, and that the plaintiff suffered damages.

What are Catastrophic Injuries?

According to the American Medical Association, a catastrophic injury is a severe injury to the spine, spinal cord, or brain. Catastrophic injuries can leave victims with a permanent severe disability or with head or neck trauma and can even lead to a victim’s death. Some common examples of catastrophic injuries are:

  • Injuries to the neck and spine – accidents that can leave the victim paralyzed due to severe damage to the spinal cord, disc, or vertebrae
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) – accidents involving injuries to the brain or loss of consciousness of a long stretch of time. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that approximately 1.4 million Americans a year suffer from TBI.
  • Loss of limbs – accidents that result in a limb being severed or later having to be amputated
  • Blindness – accidents that result in partial or complete blindness
  • Burns – accidents that result in severe second- or third-degree burns requiring extensive treatment.

What can you Recover?

While certain catastrophic injuries may be treatable with prolonged medical care and rehabilitation, many people who suffer from them will experience a severe, permanent loss in quality of life. In both instances, the costs of medical treatment can add up quickly.

If you are able to establish liability, you may be entitled to recover damages such as current and future medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, and even loss of earning capacity. Loss of earning capacity simply captures the idea that you may not be able to work the same way you did before because your injuries somehow hinder or diminish your earning capacity.

Thoughtful Representation in Catastrophic Injury Cases

If you or someone you know has suffered a catastrophic injury, you should contact an experienced and competent attorney who can inform you of your rights. Miami catastrophic injury lawyer Robert Dixon understands the pain and anxiety that stem from these types of accidents, which is why he will fight aggressively to get you what you deserve. To find out about your options, contact us online or call us today at 1-877-499-HURT (4878).