Los Angeles Brain Injury Attorney
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), traumatic brain injury (also referred to as head injury, brain injury, head trauma, or simply TBI) affects nearly two million people in the United States each year.
While some sufferers of traumatic brain injuries recover quickly without much medical intervention, many others require high levels of care and have their lives forever changed. A TBI can be devastating to both the sufferer and their loved ones. Severe TBI can even lead to death. No matter how serious the injury may initially seem, the period immediately following TBI is crucial for seeking both medical attention and legal counsel.
If you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury due to the negligence of another, please contact The Ryan Law Group today to discuss your case. You should not deal with the stress of figuring out the next steps alone. Our experienced Los Angeles personal injury attorneys will not only give you the compassionate assistance and attention you deserve, but also fight to get you the care and compensation you need.
What is Traumatic Brain Injury?
CDC defines traumatic brain injury as a “disruption in the normal function of the brain that can be caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, or penetrating head injury.” One of the most common TBIs is a concussion, which can range from mild to severe.
TBIs are unique in that they can also have long-lasting consequences. Recovery from TBI is often much more intensive than that of other injuries—and many people do not ever fully recover from traumatic brain injuries. In fact, many brain injuries have lasting effects, impacting not only your physical and cognitive abilities, but also your personality. The true effects of TBI may also be unclear for weeks or even months after suffering the injury.
Causes of Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injury can be caused in many ways, including:
- Car accidents
- Slip and fall accidents and other premises liability accidents
- Recreational sports
- Workplace accidents
- Defective or dangerous products
- Medical negligence
Symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury
There are many different symptoms of TBI, some of which may not immediately surface for months or even years. These include:
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Changes in vision
- Sensitivity to light and/or noise
- Difficulty with thinking clearly and/or remembering new information
- Feeling mentally slow or unfocused
- Changes in sleep patterns
- Mood swings
- Persistent or frequent irritation, anxiety, and/or sadness
- Exhaustion, lack of energy
If you suspect that you or a loved one may have suffered TBI, seek medical attention as soon as possible.
How is a Traumatic Brain Injury Assessed?
Doctors and other medical professionals may use a variety of methods to assess the severity of a patient’s TBI. Generally, many traumatic brain injuries are assessed as being mild, moderate, or severe. Concussions are one form of mild TBI.
One specific method commonly used to assess the initial severity of a TBI is the Glasgow Coma Scale. Medical professionals use this 15-point scale to test responsiveness in the TBI sufferer. Scores range from three to 15; a higher score means a less severe injury.
The Glasgow Coma Scale is frequently used in tandem with the Rancho Los Amigos Scale. The Rancho Los Amigos Scale is an eight-point scale often used to evaluate the progress of a patient’s recovery from the TBI. A higher score means a more highly functioning patient.
Is it Recommended to Create a Power of Attorney After a TBI?
The highly experienced brain injury lawyers at The Ryan Law Group advise our clients and prospective clients who have suffered head injuries to consider creating a power of attorney.
Depending on the severity of your TBI, it will likely be best for someone you trust to take over certain matters while you recover. You may choose to grant that trusted person the authority to handle these matters, allowing them to serve as your agent or attorney-in-fact.
A power of attorney can be general or specific. For instance, if you would like this trusted person to handle your legal and financial matters while you recover but do not want or need them to handle your medical care, then you will stipulate that.
Is There a Statute of Limitations on TBI Claims?
California law gives you as the plaintiff the right to file a civil suit against those who caused your traumatic brain injury—this means that you will be seeking monetary compensation from the defendant (person or entity that caused the TBI).
However, like all other states, California has a statute of limitations on traumatic brain injury claims—a deadline in which to file a valid lawsuit. Those seeking compensation have 2 years from the date of the incident that caused your injury, so it is crucial to act fast and retain an excellent injury attorney as soon as possible.
If the incident that caused your TBI occurred as a result of some negligence on the part of the government or a public agency or institution, California law gives you far less time to file a claim against the at-fault party. You have only 6 months to file a case against the State of California or any county, city, public college or university, public transportation system, etc.
There are some other exceptions to California’s 2-year statute of limitations rule, as well. It is highly recommended to consult a Torrance brain injury lawyer if you have any questions regarding the validity of your lawsuit.
What Damages Can I Recover?
The specific dollar amount of your compensation may vary depending on numerous circumstances. However, in general you may be able to secure both economic and non-economic damages. The former are damages that have an easily quantifiable value, while the latter is less clear in regard to monetary amount. Examples of both types of damages include:
- Medical bills and costs of healthcare
- Any future healthcare costs, such as follow-up appointments, specialist visits, and rehabilitation
- Any expenses due to an inability to independently care for yourself
- Lost wages
- Lost earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment
- Loss of consortium
In specific instances, you may also be awarded punitive damages. This is typically done in cases where the defendant expressed egregious negligence or willing carelessness and/or ill intent. Punitive damages serve as a harsh punishment for a party’s actions, as well as a deterrent from future bad behavior.
Why Do You Need a Los Angeles TBI Lawyer?
It is almost always recommended to seek legal representation after you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury in an accident. This is for a number of reasons:
Traumatic brain injuries are some of the most serious injuries that can occur in an accident, with a high potential to completely alter the future and decrease the quality of life in an individual. Those who have TBIs require constant care and attention in order to maintain some form of normalcy—care that is often costly. An attorney can assist in securing the maximum possible compensation necessary to ensure an injured party does not have to worry about affording any future healthcare.
Additionally, because traumatic brain injury cases typically result in significant damages, many defendants and their insurance companies will be significantly more invested in preventing a large payout. They may hire an aggressive legal team that will act in their best interests: to minimize compensation on your behalf. Retaining an attorney allows you to fight on equal ground against a party who is determined to prevent your recovery.
Further, if you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury, pursuing legal action against the at-fault party can be a daunting task. There are simply more important things you may have to prioritize in your life, such as you and your family’s health and wellbeing. Retaining an attorney allows you to focus on you and your family’s health and recovery, while your lawyer handles all the legal work on your behalf.
Ultimately, an experienced traumatic brain injury attorney can give you the peace of mind necessary to pursue the maximum possible compensation with minimal stress and frustration.
How the Ryan Law Group Can Help
At The Ryan Law Group, our brain injury lawyers have successfully assisted many other clients in Torrance and the Los Angeles area with difficult cases. As a full-service personal injury law firm, we can handle all the legal work on our end. This includes:
- Filing any paperwork necessary for your case
- Investigating your case to maximize compensation
- Seeking out the quality medical care you need
- Negotiating with any insurance companies
- Aggressively litigating for the compensation you deserve
- Taking your case to trial if it is necessary
Our focus is on the well-being of our clients. We understand the transformative nature of traumatic brain injuries, so work hard to fight for the compensation you deserve during this incredibly difficult time.
Contact the Ryan Law Group Today
If you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury due to the negligence of another, please reach out to us today to see how we can help. Suffering a traumatic brain injury is incredibly stressful and takes a toll on both the injured party and their loved ones—mentally, physically, and emotionally.
We understand your stress and frustration, and we want to help you win the compensation you deserve. Call our Los Angeles brain injury lawyers today for your free, no-commitment consultation.