According to data reported by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major cause of death and disability across multiple age groups. Even more disturbing is that the number of victims of TBI is on the rise. From 2006 to 2014, there was a 53 percent increase in TBI-related deaths, hospitalizations, and visits to the emergency room. In 2014, 2.87 million people were treated for various types of head injuries and another 56,800 individuals died due to TBI. Survivors suffer from a wide range of complications, both short- and long-term. The effects are devastating for the victim, but they can also impact entire families.
Fortunately, Nevada law provides you with rights if you or a loved one sustained a TBI in an accident that wasn’t your fault. Our team at Henness & Haight can help enforce them by filing a claim for monetary compensation. Time is of the essence with personal injury cases, so please contact our office right away to schedule a no-cost consultation with a traumatic brain injury attorney in Las Vegas. You may also find it useful to review some general information about these claims.
Common Causes of Traumatic Brain Injuries
Medically speaking, a TBI occurs when a victim experiences a blow or jolt to the head that disrupts normal functioning of the brain. The severity of the injury depends upon the level of force, so a TBI could be as mild as a concussion or brief period of unconsciousness. However, an extremely violent blow could cause a longer term of unconsciousness, memory loss, permanent brain damage, and disability.
There are various factors that can cause TBI, many of which are a result of an accident. Examples include:
- Car, truck, and motorcycle collisions;
- Pedestrian and bicycle accidents;
- Slips, trips, and falls due to hazardous conditions on property;
- Dangerous and defective products;
- Workplace accidents;
- Medical malpractice;
- Intentional assault and other misconduct; and,
- Many more.
Your Rights as the Victim of a Traumatic Brain Injury
While the specific causes may vary, many TBIs occur because of another person’s careless or reckless acts. In the practice of law, these cases are based the legal theory of negligence. You may be entitled to recover compensation by proving that:
- The responsible party had a duty to exercise reasonable care;
- That person or entity breached this duty;
- The breach of duty was the direct cause of the accident which led to your TBI; and,
- You suffered losses because of being injured.
In many situations, you seek monetary damages by filing an injury claim with the responsible party’s insurance company. While the claims process may seem straightforward, you may encounter considerable challenges when attempting to pursue compensation. A claims adjuster may try to blame the accident on you or dispute the nature of your injuries. These allegations may serve as grounds to deny your claim or pay out an amount that’s not sufficient to cover your losses. A TBI attorney is a valuable asset when dealing with an insurer, as they know the relevant laws and arguments to overcome a claim adjuster’s tricks.
If the insurance company isn’t willing to pay out a fair, reasonable sum to cover your losses, it may be necessary to file a lawsuit in court. Litigation is extremely complex, requiring high-level legal skills and knowledge. Retaining a TBI lawyer is critical to ensuring you get the compensation you deserve in court, through such litigation-related tasks as:
- Drafting the complaint and documents to initiate the lawsuit;
- Representing you in court for required hearings and appearances;
- Filing and defending pre-trial motions;
- Conducting discovery, including requests for documents, interrogatories, and depositions; and,
- Advocating for you during the full trial in a TBI case.
Recovering Compensation for Your Losses
Regardless of whether you negotiate a settlement with an insurer or litigate your TBI claim, there are multiple types of damages you can recover. Because head injuries can have a profound effect on your life and family, the amount of compensation in TBI cases can be considerable. Your monetary damages may include:
- Medical bills for surgery, physical therapy, medications, long-term care, and related treatment;
- Lost income, if your TBI prevents you from working temporarily or permanently;
- Pain and suffering;
- Emotional distress;
- Losses based upon how a TBI affects your relationships with your spouse, children, and other loved ones; and,
- Other monetary compensation depending on the nature and severity of your TBI.
Limitations on Injury Claims in Nevada
Despite being able to prove the four essential elements described above, there may be legal implications that affect your TBI claim. One is Nevada’s statute of limitations. You have two years to file a lawsuit in court, measured by the date of the accident that caused your TBI. If you don’t initiate litigation within this time frame, you’re forever barred from recovering monetary damages for your losses.
Another factor that may impact your TBI claim is Nevada’s law regarding comparative negligence, which puts the focus on your own actions. If you were careless or reckless in causing the accident, your compensation may be reduced by the amount of fault attributable to you. Therefore, monetary damages for $100,000 could drop to $75,000 if you were 25 percent to blame for the circumstances that led to your TBI.
Schedule a Free Consultation with Our Traumatic Brain Injury Attorneys in Las Vegas
TBI and other head injuries are among the most serious types of bodily harm a person can suffer, so it’s critical to have experienced representation when enforcing your rights. Unless you have a legal background, you risk being undercompensated or receiving no monetary damages at all. To learn more about your legal options as a victim or family member, please contact Henness & Haight by calling 702.805.HELP or checking us out online. We can set up a free case assessment to review your circumstances. Our lawyers represent clients in Las Vegas, Clark County, and throughout Southern Nevada, and we look forward to hearing from you.