Accidents, medical malpractice, or any form of negligence that results in serious or catastrophic injuries can pose life-altering consequences to victims and their loved ones. Costly medical procedures, long-term care or treatment, and the inability to work can create extensive financial burdens and a significant increase in a victim’s quality or enjoyment of life. If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in an accident as the result of another party’s careless or wrongful act, you have the right to be fairly compensated for the damages you suffered. At Shook & Stone, we make it our mission to provide legal assistance during the personal injury claim process so that victims and their families have the adequate resources to recover and focus on putting their lives back together. Our experienced Nevada injury attorneys have compiled answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about serious injuries and how they relate to the claim filing process.
What is considered a “serious” injury?
Serious injuries, also commonly referred to as catastrophic injuries, can be any injury or illness that results in significant physical damage, life-altering repercussions, and / or long-term medical care and treatment. There are many forms of injuries that can be considered serious, some of which include severe bone breaks, burns, paralysis, amputations, loss of eyesight, neck or spinal cord injuries, and brain trauma. The immediate aftermath of catastrophic injuries can be debilitating, frustrating, and extremely limiting.
Are serious injuries always permanent?
Not necessarily. Any injury that takes a significant amount of recovery time or that requires extensive and costly medical procedures may be considered serious or catastrophic. Cases vary and courts will take many things into consideration, especially the amount of emotional or psychological damage suffered.
If my injuries are serious, will by case have to go to court?
It may be more likely for a case to reach the trial phase if the nature of the injuries are serious, permanently debilitating or the case as a whole is complex and involves intricate factors. No case is guaranteed to successfully resolve at the settlement table, just as no case is guaranteed to go to trial. Speaking with an attorney specifically about your case and the likelihood of trial would be most beneficial to answer this question.
How is compensation awarded for serious injuries?
Serious and catastrophic injuries are awarded in a similar method as other forms of personal injury cases. This can include monetary compensation for economic, non-economic, and punitive damages. As medical bills are commonly more expensive in cases involving serious injuries, compensation amounts are typically greater than other mild forms of personal injury.
What are the emotional damages involved in serious injuries?
Serious injuries have the highest potential for causing severe emotional damages. Severe pain and suffering, a decrease in a victim’s quality or enjoyment of life, their inability to function as they had before the accident, and the emotional strain placed on their families and loved ones are common emotional repercussions. In addition, many seriously injured victims struggle with psychological disorders, such as depression, which can be directly caused by their injuries and the limitations of their condition. The court will take all of these factors into consideration when awarding non-economic damages.
What if I was partially at fault for my injuries?
In Nevada, there is something called modified comparative negligence – if you were injured in an auto accident, for example, you can only recover financial compensation from insurance if you were 50 percent at fault or less. In other words, if you were the primary cause of the accident, then your own personal liability insurance would have to cover the cost of your injuries and damage. Some other states follow the shared liability rule. For example, if one person was responsible for 80 percent of the accident, they could still potentially recover up to 20 percent of the damages from insurance.
What are contingency fees?
Contingency fees can also be described as “no recovery, no fee” payment. Many personal injury law firms provide this service so that their clients do not have to front any of the legal costs, such as attorney and court fees. The law firm takes care of all of the fees and requires no upfront fees from their client. In fact, the client pays nothing until/unless the firm makes a recovery on their behalf. In the case of Social Security disability clients, the government actually sets the fees for representation. If you are an SSD client, please speak with the firm about fee arrangements.
How can a personal injury lawyer help my case?
As serious injuries require extensive periods of recovery and care, having an attorney from our firm handle the legal complexities involved with the claim can greatly reduce any additional frustrations and worries that may be counterproductive to your recovery. In addition, a competent, experienced, and knowledgeable attorney can fight aggressively on your behalf to ensure that you receive fair compensation to pay for financial burdens that you may have accumulated and the harsh emotional damages endured by you and your loved ones.
While we believe that our knowledgeable, experienced, and skilled attorneys are capable of winning cases before the trial phase, we are not afraid to go to trial when necessary. Our lawyers have more than 85 years of combined experience and are all aggressive and intelligent litigators who will fight on your behalf in court to get you the compensation you and your family deserve. With more than $500 million in compensation recovered for our clients in both verdicts and settlements, our hard-working attorneys have what it takes to win both inside and outside of the courtroom. If you would like to discuss the nature of your serious injury and learn more about how Shook & Stone can help, contact us today.