4 Reasons You Need A Lawyer For Your Traumatic Brain Injury
Legally Reviewed and Edited by: Terry Cochran
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) lawsuits are complex. A lawyer can be invaluable in helping you decide what to do.
Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) occur when there is a severe bump, blow, jolt, or penetration of the skull that injures the brain. Sometimes the effect is immediate, and sometimes a TBI takes weeks (or months) to emerge.
The most common causes of TBIs are falls — if you’re under 17 or over 55 years old. For adults in-between, motor vehicle accidents (car/motorcycle/truck ) are the leading cause of head and brain injuries.
Falls, car accidents, athletic competitions, medical/surgical errors — if negligence is present and can be proven — can often provide the basis for filing a personal injury lawsuit against a liable party.
If you or a family member is a brain injury victim, there are four significant ways that a personal injury attorney can help you secure the compensation you need and deserve for your injuries and other losses.
1. Peace of Mind
If you or someone close to you has suffered a serious head injury, you may find yourself filled with questions about the future. Will you be able to return to the same job when you recover? Will you be able to return to work at all?
If you are unable to return to work, how do you calculate the lost wages, lost earning potential, long-term medical costs, and other nonmedical losses associated with your injury? Such things are extremely difficult to calculate without the assistance of an experienced brain injury attorney.
Don’t sign anything — or even agree to meet with someone representing an insurance company — until you’ve received some legal advice. If you sign a release before you fully evaluate and understand your injuries and the long-term impact of these injuries on your life, you may not be able to recover further damages when these other impacts emerge in the future.
Sometimes a mild TBI can lead to something much more serious, including sudden loss of consciousness, slurred speech, weakness in the arms or legs, and permanent brain damage.
Call Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. any time (24 hours) and let us know about your situation and concerns. We’re happy to meet with you at a time and in a place that’s convenient and comfortable for you, including your home or hospital room.
After this free consultation, if we decide to work together, it will be on a contingency fee agreement, which means that we don’t get paid until we achieve a settlement or jury award for you. In Michigan, contingent legal fees in personal injury cases are set by statute (MRPC Rule 1.5) and can be up to one-third of the settlement/damages award.
2. Who Is Negligent? Who Is Liable?
Proving negligence in a personal injury lawsuit, or in a settlement hearing with insurance companies is challenging. Sometimes determining fault isn’t the same as determining liability. Did faulty equipment contribute to the crash? Who actually owns the vehicle that hit you? Did you fall because your neighbor or landlord failed to address a hazardous condition?
Success in settlement hearings and in the courtroom requires a thorough knowledge of the local Michigan court system, the procedures that are specific to that county, and the judge(s) who may preside in your case.
Proving liability also requires that police reports and other documentation be assembled, witnesses interviewed, and other evidence collected. It’s also very important to do this work as soon after the accident as possible.
What are the negligent party’s policy limits? Does the negligent party have an accident record? Previous citations? Prior arrests? A skilled attorney will know who to call, where to find answers, and what information to discover from the other side.
The professionals at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. have many years of experience practicing personal injury law in Michigan. Our entire law firm is dedicated to helping individuals and families who have been injured through the negligence of another receive just compensation for their injuries and losses.
3. Developing A Case
A personal injury lawsuit requires a significant amount of evidence-gathering work, including securing statements from all medical personnel who have been involved in your case, witnesses to the accident that caused the brain trauma, police records (if relevant), and other evidence that could be pertinent in cases involving Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).
TBI litigation is complex and highly technical. Medical records are crucial. You’ll need to have records of a doctor’s evaluation of your thinking, motor function (movement), sensory function, coordination, and reflexes. A brain injury lawyer will know what’s important to include for your claim.
Senior Partner Eileen Kroll specializes in medical cases at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. and can help you understand your situation from both a medical and legal perspective. Eileen’s training as a Registered Nurse is invaluable in evaluating your injuries, medical records and other documentation for legal purposes. She may also recommend that certain specialists be consulted, or tests conducted — like CT scans — that can help provide the foundation for a strong case.
4. Meeting Deadlines
Depending on your case and the specifics about how your TBI happened, the Statute of Limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit in Michigan is three years from the date of the accident that caused the injury. If the TBI is the result of medical malpractice, the statute of limitations is two years from the procedure, treatment, or surgery that caused the TBI. Depending on the type of case, there may be other filing and notification deadlines involved.
Michigan law also describes certain exceptions to this statute, including what’s called the discovery rule. This is particularly relevant for TBI cases when the discovery of the injury may not coincide with the accident or action that caused it.
Don’t wait too long. Getting legal assistance early in your claims process — particularly if your injuries are serious — can make a significant and positive difference in the outcome.
Call us toll-free (24 hours) at 866-MICH-LAW or use our convenient online contact form to schedule your free consultation with a member of our legal team.
Disclaimer : The information provided is general and not for legal advice. The blogs are not intended to provide legal counsel and no attorney-client relationship is created nor intended.