Seeking Compensation After an Auto Accident Caused a Catastrophic Injury

A car accident can cause virtually any type of injury ranging from minor to catastrophic. For the purposes of a personal injury claim, an accident attorney will generally define a catastrophic injury as one that is permanently disabling in some way. Some examples including spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), limb amputation, and vision loss. When an auto accident survivor has sustained catastrophic injuries, a personal injury lawyer near Baltimore can seek considerable compensation for his or her permanent losses and lifetime care needs.

Calculating Economic Losses

Before filing a claim, the personal injury attorney must determine the amount of compensation to seek. Catastrophic injury victims can seek compensation for economic and non-economic losses. Economic losses include hospital bills and expenses for physical therapy, in-home health aides, durable medical equipment, and similar expenses. Survivors can seek compensation for past, present, and future expenses. The attorney at law may need to consult with various experts such as rehabilitative nurses to determine the appropriate amount of compensation that would cover the victim's future care needs.

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Estimating Non-Economic Losses

Non-economic losses are those that are not tangible, such as mental anguish, and pain and suffering. Victims of minor car accidents aren't as likely to successfully seek compensation for pain and suffering, but those who have sustained catastrophic injuries can often demand substantial sums for these non-economic losses. There are a few different methods of estimating non-economic losses. To help the attorney accomplish this, the client can fully disclose the extent to which the accident and the resulting injuries have affected his or her quality of life.

Identifying the Defendants

Another necessary step for seeking compensation after an auto accident is to identify the appropriate defendants. In many cases, the defendant is the other driver, who might be held liable for speeding, driving while distracted, or driving while intoxicated. In some cases, other parties may be held liable for catastrophic injuries. If the accident was a truck accident, the personal injury attorney might file a lawsuit against the truck driver's employer or the truck leasing company. Another possible option is to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer of defective vehicle parts or against a municipality if improperly maintained roadways were to blame for the crash. Once these steps are completed, the case may proceed to trial or the plaintiff might consider accepting a settlement deal.

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