Getting Compensation for TBI from Auto Accidents
Although more difficult, it is possible to be compensated for traumatic brain injuries sustained in a traffic accident. As with other injuries sustained in a traffic accident, compensation for traumatic brain injury (TBI) can come either through a settlement with the insurance company or, if necessary, by going to trial. Damages may include compensation for medical bills, rehab, physical therapy, loss of income, pain and suffering, loss of quality of life, punitive damages, and more.
However, getting compensation for a TBI can be challenging.
How TBI Can Impact a Survivor’s Life
First let’s look at the ways brain injury can affect someone’s life.
In the short term, many victims of TBIs experience symptoms like headaches, loss of balance, and nausea in the days and weeks immediately following the accident. Many recover fully within a month after the TBI with no long-term repercussions. Unfortunately, many others experience persistent physical, emotional, behavioral, and/or cognitive symptoms for months – sometimes years – after the initial accident.
Because the range of potential symptoms of a TBI is so wide, the consequences can affect every aspect of a person’s life. For example, cognitive impairments from a TBI like difficulty with learning, memory, and thought processing can affect someone’s prospects for career advancement and ability to make money. Increased anger and irritability can strain or destroy someone’s marriage. TBI may also be accompanied by PTSD, anxiety, or depression, which further affects quality of life.
It’s worth noting that loss of consciousness is not correlated with more severe symptoms. A three-week coma may be clear sign that the brain has sustained damage, but the absence of coma or loss of consciousness does not mean the brain hasn’t been injured. What looks like a mild concussion can have significant long-term consequences.
Considerations When Seeking Damages For TBI Sustained In A Motor Vehicle Accident
When seeking compensation after a traffic accident for any injury, it’s vital to demonstrate the other party’s liability and to be proactive about seeking medical treatment as soon as possible after the accident. Beyond that, there are specific points to consider when seeking compensation for a TBI.
Unlike broken bones or flesh wounds, brain injuries are “invisible,” usually not even showing up on brain scans. Without this kind of evidence of injury, it’s necessary to document the TBI and its repercussions in other ways that are compelling to an insurance company or a jury.
The insurance company may argue against the symptoms listed, since many of them are likely to be general, such as headaches and irritability. They may argue that the symptoms are not the result of the car accident but were pre-existing or arose from a separate, unrelated condition.
Finally, symptoms may not emerge for several weeks or months, making it hard to tie them directly to the accident. The insurance company may again try to argue that they are not the result of the accident.
Are You Seeking Compensation for a TBI Sustained in a Car, Truck, or Motorcycle Accident?
If yes, work with an attorney like Andrew Barr of Fulton & Barr who has experience fighting TBI cases. It is possible to present a solid case to an insurance company or jury that helps you get the compensation you deserve. Call the Greenville office at (864) 235-3154 to schedule your free initial consultation today.
Attorney Andrew C. Barr’s practice areas include personal injury, workers’ compensation, and product liability. Andrew graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Law and has been practicing law since 1989. He has represented persons in all courts including family court, circuit court, magistrates court, property damage arbitration, mediation, federal court, the SC Court of Appeals and the SC Supreme Court.
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