Being seriously injured can lead to overwhelming physical, emotional, and financial pain. Victims of someone else’s carelessness can experience a loss of income in addition to a seemingly insurmountable level of medical expenses.
Consulting with our Georgia catastrophic injury lawyers from Griffin Durham Tanner & Clarkson LLC can support the best possible outcome in your case. They’ve invested years working to fight for the rights of those whose lives have been irreversibly damaged as a result of someone else’s recklessness, inattention, or malice.
If you have suffered an injury caused by the actions or inactions of someone else, you have the right to financial compensation. Connect with a Savannah catastrophic injury attorney by calling (912) 867-9140, and read on to learn more.
How Georgia Law Defines Catastrophic Injury
When it comes to accidents, Georgia Law Sec. 40-6-394 defines “bodily harm” as an injury which:
- Deprives him or her of a member of his or her body
- Renders a part of his or her body useless
- Seriously disfigures his or her body
- Causes brain damage which renders his or her body or any member thereof useless
The way the law defines injuries will influence how your case is constructed, and ultimately, what damages you’re entitled to. Working with an experienced attorney who knows how the law applies to the unique facts and circumstances of your injury is the best way to support your recovery.
Serious injuries that may qualify as catastrophic include: Georgia Code defines an accident that results in serious injuries or fatalities as:
1. Amputation or loss of limb
The loss or surgical removal of a limb due to the accident can have long-term implications for both the physical and financial health of the catastrophic accident victim. Loss of limb can also lead to permanent changes in earnings ability that may be recoverable in your damages.
2. Severe disfigurement
Severe disfigurement falls under the legal definition of “bodily harm” under Georgia Statute. Ongoing healthcare is often essential, in addition to mental health counseling to address the psychological effects of disfigurement.
3. Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
A traumatic brain injury is a form of “organic brain damage” as defined by Georgia Code Section 40-60394 – Serious injury by vehicle. A traumatic brain injury can lead to permanent changes in brain chemistry that can impact a person’s ability to enjoy their personal life as they had before the accident and also prevent them from returning to work.
4. Severe burns
Severe burns are defined under Georgia Code Sec. 40-5-55 as a serious injury in a traffic accident. Burn injuries can have lifelong consequences in terms of healthcare demands and lost wages.
As above, dismemberment is a serious injury within the context of traffic accidents and is very similar to amputation or loss of a limb.
6. Partial or total loss of vision or hearing
The senses are essential for a person to function completely as they had prior to an accident. When a catastrophic accident impacts your vision or hearing in a traffic accident caused by the malice of another, Georgia Code protects your interests.
7. Loss of consciousness
The loss of consciousness in a traffic accident falls under the Georgia Code definition of “traffic accident resulting in serious injuries or fatalities.” When you lose consciousness, there is the potential for brain injury. Seeking medical attention for follow-up opinions is important to protect your health.
Long-Term Effects of Catastrophic Injury
The purpose of pursuing a claim or settlement for your catastrophic injury is “to be made whole.” This is a legal term that describes the purpose of personal injury lawsuits, which is to put the injured party in as close a financial position as possible as though the accident had never happened.
While some injuries will never be fully recovered from, receiving financial compensation helps ensure that your family has the financial support it needs to deal with the costs linked to your injury.
The following damages are available generally for your catastrophic injury. Your attorney will put together the evidence necessary to prove them.
Physical disabilities that may result from a catastrophic injury vary widely and can include a variety of injuries as explored above. When your disability leads to ongoing medical expenses and impacts your ability to work and support your family, compensation is available.
Changes in your mental ability can impact your ability to enjoy life and engage in pleasurable activities. Additionally, mental disability can impact an individual’s ability to focus, which can impact working ability, the capacity to drive and get around, and many other essential functions.
Financial Hardship and Employment Difficulties
The cost of surgeries, medications, treatments, rehabilitation, and other ongoing medical care can quickly add up.
When you don’t receive a settlement that fully covers the costs associated with your medical expenses, the costs will come out of you and your family’s budget, leading to the potential of long-term financial hardship.
If your catastrophic injury impacts your ability to work, the long-term financial stability of your household is put at risk. You could be entitled to the difference in your earnings ability from the time of your injury through the remainder of your working life.
Calculating this amount and gathering evidence to prove it can be difficult, but your Savannah catastrophic injury lawyer handles everything for you so the full amount is pursued in your claim.
How Our Firm Can Help
When it comes time to collect compensation for your catastrophic injury, you’ll generally be filing a claim with the insurance company of the liable party. Insurance companies increase profits by denying your claim or paying as little as possible.
With Griffin Durham Tanner & Clarkson LLC behind you, you can rest assured that the insurance company will be held fully accountable for your damages.
The sooner you reach out to our firm for your catastrophic injury, the sooner we will be able to begin building a case against the person or entity that caused your injuries.
As soon as we have our initial consultation with you, we will begin:
- Taking over all negotiations and communications with opposing attorneys and insurance claim adjusters
- Investigating the site of the accident before evidence is lost forever
- Examining police records and medical reports to build evidence in support of your case
- Investigating the defendant’s prior history of any similar or relevant negligence or misconduct
- Consulting with experts in relevant fields to later testify and provide evidence in support of your case
- Interviewing witnesses for evidence while they still remember details of the crash
- Putting together a strategy aimed toward bringing you maximum damages
Working with one of our attorneys allows you to focus on recovering from your injuries while we handle the rest to ensure you collect the compensation you deserve.
To accurately measure the costs and implications of your injuries, follow-up opinions from occupational and medical experts are essential. Your Savannah catastrophic injury attorney may schedule these appointments on your behalf to ensure you have the evidence you need to win your case.
Damages You May Be Able to Recover for a Catastrophic Injury
Certain factors will influence the amount of your settlement. Your experienced attorney applies the law and outcome of similar cases to your accident and determines the best strategy to achieve maximum damages.
The first form of damages you may recover for your catastrophic injury is economic damages. Economic damages are measurable, objectively verifiable, real losses linked to your accident.
Economic damages linked to your accident include:
- Repair to any property damaged in the accident
- The cost of any short-term medical expenses like the emergency room
- Any long-term medical costs like surgeries, rehabilitation, treatments, and medications
- Lost wages as a result of the accident and related injuries
- Lost work benefits like accrued sick time and paid vacation leave
- Lost earnings potential due to the symptoms of your injury
Additionally, there may be non-economic damages available in your case. Non-economic damages are sometimes referred to as “general” damages and are not as easy to measure as economic damages.
While economic damages will have a set number whether from bills or lost paychecks, non-economic damages cannot be calculated by adding up the amount of documented bills and receipts.
Non-economic damages include:
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Physical impairment
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of companionship
- Loss related to reputation
- Disability and disfigurement
Non-economic damages will naturally vary from case to case. Strict guidelines are generally applied in different jurisdictions and will vary depending upon the rules in your local courts.
Recovering the full non-economic damages you are entitled to requires knowledge of these guidelines and how to apply them to your case.
Who May Be Liable for Your Injury
Some common defendants who have catastrophically injured our clients include:
- Private property owners including shopping centers and movie theaters who failed to keep their premises safe for visitors from slip and falls
- Drunk, negligent, reckless, or distracted drivers
- Dog owners who failed to protect persons against bites
- Construction companies that failed to adequately warn and protect passersby from hazards on a construction site
- Car and motor vehicle manufacturers who have produced and sold defective vehicles or included parts that resulted in motor vehicle accidents
- Departments of public works who caused dangerous conditions on the roads due to a failure to maintain them
- Pharmaceutical companies that distributed compromised or tainted products and medications, causing injury or death
- Financial, legal, medical, or professionals in other fields who engaged in malpractice that caused harm
The savannah catastrophic injury lawyers at Griffin Durham Tanner & Clarkson approach each catastrophic injury as an opportunity to help our client make things right. We’re not afraid of going against large companies or government organizations in pursuit of the compensation you deserve.
Did you or a loved one suffer a severe injury in Savannah? We can help.
The symptoms of your injury may forever change your life in both the personal and professional spheres. When you do not recover compensation to cover the associated costs, you could encounter permanent costs and negative impacts on your financial stability.
Reach out to Griffin Durham Tanner & Clarkson LLC by calling (912) 867-9140 or schedule a consultation to discuss options on how we can help on your case. Our Savannah catastrophic injury lawyers are prepared to take over your case and pursue maximum compensation on your claim.