Catastrophic injuries can completely change the course of your life. This is because they deal with permanent damage to your body or mind. According to the National Center for Catastrophic Sports Injury Research (NCCSIR), a catastrophic injury is defined as any injury that results in permanent functional disability. For this reason, catastrophic injuries differ from common personal injuries.
There are three common categories of catastrophic injuries. These three categories include; physical, cognitive, and spinal cord injuries. Each category has its own set of most likely causes, lifelong effects, and legal ramifications.
Physical Catastrophic Injuries
Catastrophic injuries that deal with physical trauma also include any permanent damage to your body’s orthopedic function or tissue. You can sustain a physical catastrophic injury from partaking in any physical activity. Whether you are driving your car, playing a sport, or even walking down a flight of stairs, you could be at risk of getting hurt and suffering a catastrophic injury.
Many physical injuries could be considered catastrophic because they leave their victim with permanent damage. Common examples of physical catastrophic injuries include:
- Bone fractures
- Loss of limbs
- Organ damage
- Internal bleeding
- Serious diseases like cancer
All of these ailments listed can leave you with life-altering effects, which is why they are considered catastrophic. Get in touch with a personal injury lawyer from Boettcher, Divenney, Ingle, and Wicker (BDIW), and they can help you with building a case against the at-fault party for the compensation that you may be entitled to.
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Cognitive Catastrophic Injuries
Cognitive catastrophic injuries are those that deal with severe blunt-force trauma to the brain. You can be at increased risk of suffering head trauma when you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, a high-intensity and violent sport (like football or wrestling), a workplace accident, or a violent assault. This permanent neurological damage can affect your ability to hear, see, speak, walk, think clearly, remember, and even form new memories.
Spinal Cord Catastrophic Injuries
Spinal cord catastrophic injuries are what most people think of when they hear the term catastrophic injury or when they think of accidents resulting in permanent damage. Along with physical and cognitive, spinal cord catastrophic injuries can result from car accidents, sports-related accidents, and physical fights. They can also result from medical malpractice (like a surgery gone wrong) or even simple slip-and-fall accidents.
The major lifelong effect that results from a spinal cord injury is paralysis which is the loss of control over body functions and body systems. However, you do not have to suffer from some sort of form of paralysis to have a life-altering spinal cord injury. You could also experience exaggerated reflexes and spasms.
Plus, these types of injuries can deal with respiratory and circulatory problems. No matter which form of catastrophic injury you or your loved ones may suffer from, it is best practice to sit down and chat with an experienced personal injury attorney. They can give you at least some peace of mind by arguing for a financial compensation package from the at-fault party that you are entitled to.
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Catastrophic Injuries vs. Standard Personal Injuries
Catastrophic injuries differ from standard personal injuries due to the severity of their nature and the effects it has on you. A standard personal injury is one that you might sustain from a slip or fall, sports or exercise accident, or a low-intensity car accident.
These injuries will not be near-fatal, and they will not cause permanent damage. Yet, you can, and should, still hire a personal injury lawyer from BDIW and sue the at-fault party for financial compensation that you might be entitled to.
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Catastrophic Injury Cases and their Statute of Limitations
Although catastrophic injuries are severe in their nature and can completely alter the course of your life for the worse, you still have a tight deadline as to when you are allowed to file a claim. Failure to adhere to a statute of limitations means that you have lost out on the opportunity to hold the at-fault party accountable for their negligent and reckless actions. Plus, you will have lost out on winning a financial compensation package based on your medical bills, loss of wages, and overall pain and suffering.
The average period of time that statues are based on is between 2 to 4 years, starting from the onset of the accident. The state of Oklahoma allows for a 2-year period with all personal injury statutes of limitations. This goes for cases dealing with catastrophic injuries as well. There is no sense in waiting around and debating about filing a claim when you could be talking with a personal injury attorney and going through, in-depth, your legal options and not missing out on the short period of time for when you are allowed to file a suit.
Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help with Catastrophic Injury Cases
A common misconception that catastrophic injury victims hold is that they do not think that they can hire a standard personal injury because of the severity and rarity of their injuries. However, according to the U.S. Department of Justice and its Bureau of Justice Statistics, there were between 300,000 and 500,000 personal injury cases in the latest year of reporting. 52% of those cases were related to severe car motor vehicle accidents. This shows that personal injury attorneys do indeed have the knowledge and expertise to deal with serious and catastrophic injury cases.
It is smart to hire a personal injury lawyer for your accident that resulted in catastrophic injuries. You can hold the at-fault party liable for what they did, and you can receive financial compensation for all of your troubles. BDIW personal injury lawyers always investigate the details surrounding the accident by combing through official police reports, examining insurance claims, interviewing witnesses, and looking over medical records.
The same report from the Bureau of Justice Statistics shows that 61% of car accident-related personal injury cases were won by the victims and their legal teams. You and your loved ones can be a part of that 61% by contacting BDIW today for a free and confidential consultation to get the ball rolling on this entire process.
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