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A brain injury or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is one of the most frightening injuries a person can sustain. Even a minor brain injury must be treated as an emergency since the consequences can rapidly become more severe if the injury is left untreated. Victims of brain injuries often require extensive medical treatment, including brain surgery. Even with the proper treatment, victims may never regain what they lost due to the injury.
How Our St. Louis Brain Injury Lawyers Can Help
At Miller & Hine, we understand how serious a brain injury can be, and the everlasting effect it can have on the victims and those who love and care for them. We also believe that if the injury is the result of someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, you and your family shouldn’t have to bear the consequences alone.
Over the years, our St. Louis brain injury lawyers have represented people from all walks of life – from blue-collar workers to business owners – and achieved positive results even in cases that were considered too complicated by many. We understand what it takes to succeed in a brain injury case, how to navigate the injury claims process in Missouri, and how to recover maximum compensation on your behalf.
Call Miller & Hine today at (314) 413-2053 or visit our contact form to arrange a free consultation with an experienced St. Louis brain injury lawyer.
Common Causes of Brain Injury
Every year, an average of 2.5 million people suffer brain injuries. Traumatic Brain Injuries are most common in young men between ages 15-24, but they also occur in the elderly population and children under age 5. The most common causes of TBIs are those that most often impact people in these age groups. Most brain injuries are caused by the following:
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Athletic injuries
- Violent assaults and gunfire
Brain injuries may result from blunt force trauma, sudden violent shaking, or penetrating injuries such as gunshots. When the delicate tissues of the brain bump against the bony inner surface of the skull, the tissue may bruise, bleed, swell, or tear. Injuries to brain cells have long-lasting or permanent consequences. Brain cell regeneration is an area of medicine that remains unclear. The brain has to rewire itself to regain lost function and in many cases, victims of severe brain injuries never fully recover but may live with varying degrees of impairment.
Consequences of a Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injuries can have catastrophic consequences for the victim. The severity of a brain injury depends on many factors, including the force of impact on the head or body, and the nature of the injury itself. For example, the consequences of a minor concussion, typically won’t be as severe as a coup-contrecoup brain injury, which is caused by the brain colliding with the inside walls of the skull.
Nevertheless, if you believe that you or someone you care about has sustained a brain injury of any severity, seek immediate medical attention. The injury must be thoroughly evaluated by a qualified physician and treated as soon as possible to mitigate the consequences.
Compensation in a Missouri Brain Injury Case
Brain injury victims often suffer physical and mental damages while having to deal with medical, financial, and legal challenges. But those whose brain injury is the result of someone else’s negligence may be entitled to substantial compensation for their injuries and financial losses.
Our St. Louis brain injury lawyers will work with you and your family to help navigate the personal injury claims process to recover monetary compensation through a brain injury lawsuit. While monetary compensation won’t undo the pain and suffering you and your family have endured, it can help pay for treatment, rehabilitation, and any other costs associated with your injury.
What Damages Can I Gain in a Brain Injury Case?
When the actions or negligence of another party causes an accident leading to a brain injury, the injured person is entitled to compensation for their economic and non-economic losses. If you or a family member suffered a brain injury and someone else is liable, you could gain compensation for damages such as:
- Medical expenses
- Future medical expenses for ongoing care or treatments
- Lost wages and any future lost earnings
- Diminished earning capacity in the event of a disability or impairment caused by the injury
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium (the ability to enjoy all aspects of relationships with loved ones)
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Mental anguish
While economic losses are tangible and easily calculated, non-economic losses are sometimes even more damaging to those who’ve suffered a brain injury. Injured victims deserve compensation for both types of significant damages.
Who Can Be Held Liable for a Brain Injury?
Brain injuries are commonly caused by accidents, whether a car accident, a slip-and-fall accident, a sports injury or another unexpected traumatic or violent event. If the accident that caused the injury directly resulted from the negligence, recklessness, or wrongdoing of another party, that person or entity can be held liable for damages suffered by the injury victim. Proving liability requires showing the following:
- That the person at fault owed a duty of care to the victim; for instance, a driver owes a duty of care to keep others sharing the roads safe by following traffic laws and driving responsibly, and a shop owner owes patrons a duty to care to prevent fall hazards on their property
- That the at-fault person breached their duty of care through an act of negligence or wrongdoing
- That the breach directly caused the brain injury
- That the injury victim suffered damages as a result of the brain injury
Once the evidence clearly proves liability, the person at fault for the injury owes compensation for damages, typically paid through their insurance company.
How Long Do I Have to File a Brain Injury Case?
Missouri has a generous time limit for filing personal injury cases, including those for brain injuries. The state’s statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim is 5 years from the date of the accident or five years from the date the injured person discovered their injury. This statute helps to preserve the quality of evidence and prevents plaintiffs from facing long, ongoing threats of lawsuits.
What to Do After Sustaining a Brain Injury in St. Louis
After sustaining a brain injury, you should visit an emergency room or medical facility immediately to have a qualified healthcare professional assess the injury, take steps to mitigate the damage, and officially document the injury for any future injury claim you might file.
You should then gather as much evidence as possible to document your injury and the accident that caused it, whether that be a slip and fall accident, motor vehicle accident, workplace accident, etc.
This evidence may include:
- Medical records
- Police reports
- First responder reports
- Photos and videos
- Personal written accounts
- Eyewitness testimony
- Other documents, statements, and records
Also, keep a journal of the treatment you receive as well as the difficulties and challenges you have to deal with as a result of your injury. All of this will assist your brain injury lawyer in building a strong case for compensation.
Finally, it is important to seek out and hire an experienced St. Louis brain injury lawyer to assist you with your personal injury lawsuit. At Miller & Hine, a team of knowledgeable and experienced personal injury lawyers is ready to help you pursue compensation for your suffering. Visit our contact page or call us today at (314) 413-2053 to arrange a free consultation where you can learn more about how we can help you.