A traumatic brain injury can dramatically change a victim’s life in an instant. Without our brains being in “working order,” we can’t make a living for ourselves or our families, we can’t do the things we enjoy doing, we can’t take care of our responsibilities, and we often require others to take care of even our most basic needs. Brain injuries can vary in nature. Some can be mild, and we can recover fully. Others are quite traumatic and, unfortunately, permanent. You may not be able to work in your chosen field or at all. You may need long-term rehab to learn to walk and talk again. And all the while, medical bills continue to mount along with the regular monthly bills.
When another person’s negligence causes a brain injury, the victim may be entitled to financial compensation. If you or someone you love suffered a brain injury of some type because of another person’s negligence in Phoenix or the surrounding area, schedule a free case review by the experienced Phoenix personal injury lawyers of Hastings & Hastings.
The lawyer that you choose to represent you or your family can have a significant impact on the outcome of your case. In brain injury cases specifically, it is vitally important that your attorney maximizes your financial compensation. Brain injuries can affect a victim’s life in profound and far-reaching ways. If your attorney does not understand how to properly assess the injury, the impact on your life, and your needs moving forward, you may end up with a settlement that is woefully inadequate. At Hastings & Hastings, our Phoenix brain injury lawyers have significant experience handling cases involving mild and traumatic brain injuries. We know how to build strong cases for our clients to maximize the compensation that they receive. Our attorneys handle all brain injury cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning there are no fees unless we win.
Many people are often hesitant to seek legal representation, especially when faced with mounting medical bills and lost wages due to their injuries. They might think that hiring a lawyer will just add to their financial burden, but we’re here to tell you that this isn’t always the case. Most traumatic brain injury attorneys in Phoenix work on a contingency fee basis.
A contingency fee basis means that the attorney only gets paid if they win your case or reach a settlement. They will then receive a percentage of the settlement or judgment awarded, which usually ranges from 30% to 40%. This arrangement ensures that the attorney is motivated to work diligently on your behalf and secure the best possible outcome for your case.
While many attorneys in the TBI field work on a contingency fee basis, it’s essential to be aware of other additional costs that may arise during the legal process. Some of these costs might include:
Be sure to discuss these potential costs upfront with your attorney, as they may vary depending on the complexity of your case and the attorney’s approach. Some lawyers will cover these costs for you as part of their service, while others may ask for reimbursement. Make sure to clarify this with your attorney before signing an agreement.
There are several types of brain injuries. There is a closed head injury. It occurs from a blow to the head that does not cause the skull to fracture or break. It also does not cause the brain tissue itself to become pierced. However, it can cause swelling and bruising to the brain. An open head injury is an injury that opens or fractures the skull. It can also result in the brain being penetrated. It can also cause bleeding from the brain.
From here, the most common brain injuries include and are not limited to:
Some of the most common causes of brain injuries in Phoenix occur because of the negligence of another person. These occurrences include:
A severe brain injury is defined as a condition when the person was unconscious for at least six hours or remained in a state of post-traumatic amnesia for a minimum of 24 hours. Statistics show that individuals who are diagnosed with a serious or severe brain injury are more likely to require hospitalization or ongoing rehab after their initial treatment has finished. Bleeding on the brain is an example of a serious brain injury.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were almost 70,000 TBI-related deaths in 2021 in The United States, and lifetime costs for care and lost productivity range from $85,000 to $3 million for each injury. The costs vary depending on the severity of the injury and other personal factors. Below are some of the major categories of costs associated with TBIs:
TBI patients often require varying levels of ongoing medical care, including emergency care, hospitalization, surgeries, medications, and rehabilitation.
Depending on the severity of the injury, TBI patients may need assistive devices such as wheelchairs, hearing aids, or communication aids.
Home modifications to improve accessibility and safety for the injured person, including ramps, lift systems, and bathroom adaptations, can add up to considerable expense.
Many TBI patients will require long-term or even lifelong care, and expenses may fluctuate as new issues or therapy needs emerge.
TBI patients may be unable to continue working or may have reduced earning capacity due to physical or mental impairments. This loss of potential income is a significant factor in determining lifetime costs.
Several other factors can influence the lifetime costs of TBIs, including:
The severity of the TBI will determine the level of care, therapy, and assistance required. More severe injuries will likely result in higher costs and ongoing care needs.
A younger person with a TBI would likely face a longer period of disability and higher lost earning potential. Additionally, pre-injury health issues may compound the effects of the injury and increase healthcare costs.
Medical costs and living expenses vary substantially across the United States. Higher costs in densely populated urban areas may increase the total lifetime cost of a TBI. However, travel costs need to be considered for those in more rural areas where medical services are more difficult to find and reach.
The more therapy and support services required, the higher the lifetime costs may be. Physical, occupational, and speech therapy, as well as cognitive rehabilitation, are common needs for TBI patients and can add up over time.
Retaining a skilled traumatic brain injury attorney also adds to costs, but can help ensure that you or your loved one receives appropriate compensation to assist with the financial strains of a TBI. They understand the complex medical issues involved, can communicate with medical experts, and are familiar with the various damages one can claim in a TBI lawsuit.
If your case cannot be settled through negotiation, your attorney will be prepared to take your claim to court and fight aggressively for the full compensation you are owed. Insurance companies and defendants alike may be more likely to offer a fair settlement if they know you have strong legal representation, increasing the chances of a favorable outcome.
Insurance companies are for-profit businesses, and their primary objective is to minimize their expenses and maximize their profits. When dealing with personal injury claims, including those for traumatic brain injuries, insurance adjusters may try to settle cases as quickly and inexpensively as possible.
As a result, they’ll often present you with an initial low settlement offer, anticipating that you’re likely in a vulnerable state and might accept without thinking twice.
Here are some specific reasons why you shouldn’t accept the first-time offer:
TBIs are complex injuries that often require extensive medical treatment, therapy, and rehabilitation. In many cases, the lifetime cost of care can be staggering, running into hundreds of thousands of dollars. Insurance adjusters might make a low initial offer that covers only your present medical bills, without accounting for:
A TBI can put you out of work for an extended period or even permanently, depending on its severity. Accepting the insurer’s first offer may not provide adequate compensation for the wages and benefits you’ve lost or your diminished earning capacity due to new physical or cognitive limitations.
TBIs can lead to chronic pain, emotional turmoil, and a reduced quality of life. In Arizona, you’re entitled to compensation for non-economic damages like pain and suffering. Insurance companies may not factor these damages into their initial offer or may undervalue them, leaving you with insufficient compensation to address your emotional and psychological needs.
When you or someone you love is impacted by a brain injury because of another person’s negligence, it creates a very scary and uncertain future. The entire family is affected. The experienced Phoenix brain injury attorneys of Hastings & Hastings have a long, proud history of assisting victims and their families in getting the financial compensation that they deserve. We believe that our clients have the job of focusing on their recovery. It is our job to help our clients get the financial compensation they need. Schedule your free consultation now.