Catastrophic injuries are severe and often require extensive medical attention. When you hire a personal injury attorney, they can provide information on exactly what you need to know when filing a catastrophic injury claim.
One important thing to know about catastrophic injury claims is that you could recover more in damages. A catastrophic injury could leave you with high medical bills and the inability to work. A personal injury attorney can help you file a claim and pursue the money you need.
Steps to File a Catastrophic Injury Claim
The first step to filing a catastrophic injury claim includes seeking legal guidance from an attorney. They can do everything possible to ensure you have a solid case against the liable party. With an attorney, you can rest assured that the correct legal steps are taken.
If the below steps don’t remedy the situation, your attorney can file a lawsuit on your behalf and represent you in front of a judge and jury to present your case.
Investigate the Accident
Contacting an attorney soon after the accident can help the investigation. When an attorney starts working on the case right after the accident, they have a better chance of collecting quality evidence, which can help develop a stronger case.
Steps a lawyer can take to investigate the accident include:
- Reviewing the police report
- Analyzing photographs and video footage
- Speaking to witnesses
All of these can help an attorney determine what caused your accident and who is responsible.
Identify the Liable Party
An essential aspect of any personal injury case includes identifying the liable party. This shows you whom to file the claim against. Once identified, your attorney can speak to the liable party’s insurance company on your behalf.
Identify Your Recoverable Damages
To determine your case’s potential value, an attorney can calculate your recoverable damages. Recoverable damages refer to the monetary and non-monetary losses you sustained because of your injuries. For example, in catastrophic injuries, you could have suffered extensive financial losses because of high medical bills and missed work.
Examples of damages you could recover through a catastrophic injury claim include:
- Medical expenses: A catastrophic injury could require surgeries and long hospitalizations (which could cause you to pay a lot of money out-of-pocket). Other medical expenses could include the cost of prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, diagnostic testing services, and doctor’s visits.
- Rehabilitative care: If your injury requires rehabilitative care, such as occupational therapy, physical therapy, or speech therapy, you could recover compensation for those out-of-pocket costs.
- In-home nursing care: Since catastrophic injuries could leave you disabled or medically fragile, you could require around-the-clock care from a nurse. You could recover compensation for in-home nursing if your injuries require that level of care.
- Lost income: Many catastrophic injuries can prevent you from working at your regular job. If you can no longer work (whether temporarily or permanently), you could recover compensation for the income you lost through a claim or lawsuit.
- Pain and suffering: Catastrophic injuries often cause some level of physical pain. If you or a loved one experienced physical pain or discomfort, you could recover compensation through a personal injury claim. An attorney can help you determine the value of compensation to seek for that loss.
- Emotional distress: A catastrophic injury could leave you with emotional trauma, anxiety, or even depression. If you have dealt with negative psychological issues because of your injury, you could recover compensation.
An attorney can guide you through the process of identifying your damages. They can help to ensure nothing gets missed so you can seek the maximum compensation possible for your losses.
Send a Demand Letter
Once your attorney determines how much compensation to pursue in your case, they can send a demand letter. The demand letter will outline the parameters of the agreement you seek. For example, it can include the amount of compensation you want the liable party to pay. Also, you can attach evidence and documentation proving why they owe you the compensation you seek.
The opposing party can accept or deny the demand letter. If they accept, they will pay you promptly, and you can have a quickly resolved case.
Negotiate for a Fair Settlement
If the opposing party doesn’t accept the terms of your demand letter, your attorney can negotiate to reach a fair settlement. Having an attorney through this stage can help significantly. Attorneys often have strong negotiating tactics and can be fearless in standing up to large insurance companies with powerful legal teams.
If a fair settlement cannot be agreed upon, your attorney can file a lawsuit against the opposing party.
Injuries Considered Catastrophic
Catastrophic injuries generally involve the head, spine, and brain. They often cause long-term (or even permanent) damage and health issues.
Injuries considered catastrophic include the following:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- The loss of a limb
- Severe burns
Any of these injuries could impact you for the rest of your life, causing you to deal with ongoing medical treatments. In addition, if you aren’t able to work anymore, you could be at risk for financial hardship.
An attorney from KJT Law Group can explain what you need to know about filing a catastrophic injury claim. Our team works tirelessly for our clients and has helped many people dealing with catastrophic injuries. Let us do the same for you. We can do all the legal heavy lifting while you focus on rest and recovery.