By Leonard Villafranco
Catastrophic Injury & illness can include brain injury, spinal cord injury, accidental amputation, severe burns, multiple fractures, or other neurological disorders and many other bodily injury types. A catastrophic injury usually occurs suddenly and without warning. Injuries are considered catastrophic due to the enormous impact they have on the lives of the individuals who experience them. A catastrophic injury very often causes severe disruption to the central nervous system, which in turn affects many other systems of the body. In addition to possible loss of movement, sensation, and cognitive abilities, the injury may impact respiration, circulation, skin, and other bodily functions. Individuals may recover from some catastrophic injuries if they receive proper, early medical treatment; however, many others experience permanent disability, disfigurement, significant suffering, and reduced life spans.
If a catastrophic injury was caused by the negligent or intentional act of another, or by a dangerous or defective product, a personal injury claim by the victim will be an important factor in determining his or her future quality of life, including the quality of the medical care and other support he or she will receive. Because of the huge financial implications a catastrophic injury has, one of the most important aspects of bringing a personal injury claim is the determination of the value of such a claim. A person whose earning capacity has been substantially impacted and who is likely facing a lifetime of care requires an experienced attorney, with specialized knowledge of his or her particular type of injury, to ensure that the injured person obtains all of the financial support he or she will need, possibly for decades to come.
The long-term implications of many catastrophic injuries often do not surface or become apparent until years after the original injury. For example, individuals who are injured as children may experience changes in their abilities/disabilities as they grow, requiring surgeries or other medical intervention to accommodate their growth. Similarly, a burn victim might continue to undergo reconstructive surgeries for many years after the original injury. Thus, an attorney who understands the long-term implications of such injuries will be better able to ensure the victims receive just compensation and sufficient resources for the future.
If you would like to speak to an attorney about this, or any other legal issue, you can contact Villafranco & Garcia, PLLC. at (772) 288-7338 or (772) 871-6441.
This column is an overview of the subject matter and is not intended as legal advice. Villafranco & Garcia, PLLC. are attorney’s practicing law in Stuart, FL and Port St. Lucie West, FL.