Most catastrophic injuries result in significant changes to the victim’s life. They usually result in serious medical expenses, lost time at work, chronic pain and suffering, and countless changes to your general lifestyle and standard of living. They can cause the victim to suffer severe, life-altering personal injuries which may mean being unable to engage in the same work, leisure, or other activities that the victim enjoyed before their accident.

What Are Catastrophic Injuries, and How Do They Happen?

In general, a catastrophic injury is one that was fatal, caused a permanent disability, or led to a marked change in the circumstances of the victim’s life. In personal injury law, there is no single, set definition of catastrophic injuries, and whether an injury is considered catastrophic will depend largely on the unique facts of each case.

Some examples of catastrophic injuries include traumatic brain injuries, back and spinal injuries, paralysis, severe burns, the loss of limbs or amputations, and serious internal injuries. They can happen under many different circumstances: car or trucking accidents, workplace injuries, serious burns, and injuries on someone else’s property are just some examples. 

How Do Catastrophic Injuries Affect the Victim’s Life?

After a long-term catastrophic injury, the victim may need significant medical care and intervention. They may have extensive hospital stays, need substantial medical treatments, and need to see various specialists or other medical professionals on their journey to recovery. They may need physical or occupational therapy, life care, and significant help with everyday activities. In some cases, they may never fully recover and may need adaptive equipment or other technologies to assist with daily life. Chronic, long-lasting pain and suffering are very common after a catastrophic injury.

In addition to the physical effects of such an extensive injury, the victim may also suffer mental anguish, emotional trauma, and even post-traumatic stress. The injury may leave them unable to work for a time, causing lost wages or income, and in some cases may prevent them from working altogether, causing loss of future earnings. They may lose enjoyment in the activities they once enjoyed, and they may not be able to provide the care and companionship they were once able to provide to their loved ones. Essentially, a catastrophic injury can substantially decrease the victim’s quality of life. 

How Do Catastrophic Injuries Affect the Victim’s Family Members and Loved Ones?

Catastrophic injury effects are not just limited to the victim—in many cases, the victim’s family and loved ones also experience life-changing effects from the injury. Your loved one may need substantial assistance with daily tasks, and family members may need to be available to help or may need to hire appropriate caregivers. Therapy and rehabilitation costs may pose a significant expense to your family, and you may need to purchase adaptive equipment or technology to help your loved one adjust to life after their injury.

Moreover, your family may no longer enjoy activities that you used to do together, as your time may be spent taking care of your loved one, or as your loved one is unable to participate due to their injuries or chronic pain. Your family may lose some of the care and companionship that the victim was able to provide previously, and your family’s overall quality of life may be significantly altered.

What Can You Do to Recover for Your Damages if You or a Loved One Has Suffered a Catastrophic Injury?

If you or your loved one have suffered a catastrophic injury as a result of wrongdoing or negligence by another party, you may be able to recover compensation for the monetary damages you have incurred. Damages include medical and hospital bills, therapy and rehabilitation costs, and lost wages if you cannot work due to your injuries. They can also include compensation for pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment, and the overall decline in your quality of life.

Generally, recovering damages for a catastrophic injury means filing a claim for negligence, where you will need to prove liability — that your injuries happened as a direct result of someone else’s wrongful or negligent conduct. The issues of liability and damages can be complicated, particularly in a catastrophic injury case, and retaining an experienced and knowledgeable attorney can be invaluable. They will negotiate with the other party and their insurance company on your behalf, and they will work hard to prepare a strong case for trial if a favorable settlement does not result from those negotiations.

How Can Johnson Garcia Help With Your Catastrophic Injury Case?

Simply put, the goal of our client-focused practice is to focus on your needs so that you can focus on putting your life back together. We have over 35 years of combined experience, and we have helped clients with catastrophic injuries recover compensation.

We negotiate on your behalf towards a favorable settlement — even when the other party or their insurer are not negotiating fairly, the personal injury attorneys at Johnson Garcia can help, and we will file a lawsuit on your behalf and take your case to trial if needed. If you or your loved one have suffered a catastrophic injury, contact Johnson Garcia for a free consultation.