A traumatic brain injury (TBI) can have an extensive impact on your life, affecting your work, relationships, and daily living. The associated medical costs can be massive, compounded by the income you lost due to your injury. Because of these, it’s crucial to find avenues to get compensated.
California’s legal system allows you to claim compensation from the party that caused your head injury. Let Gavel Law Firm help you. Our Riverside brain injury attorney has unique and invaluable knowledge of TBI claims, having prior experience in the insurance industry. This is a solid advantage that lets us obtain maximum compensation for our injured clients.
See how Gavel Law Firm can help you with your brain injury claim. Consult with us for free at (951) 289-0202.
What is a Traumatic Brain Injury? Definition and Types
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is the umbrella term for various injuries caused by an external physical force on the brain. They typically occur when the head suffers a blow such as in an accident, but some TBIs involve a penetrating object like a bullet or debris that pierces the skull.
TBIs range from mild concussions to life-threatening brain bleeds. The following are some types of brain injuries that commonly give rise to an injury claim:
- Concussion – Though many concussions heal on their own after a few days, some have symptoms that persist and can be debilitating. A long-lasting form of this injury is called post-concussion syndrome.
- Contusion – This is bruising of the brain tissue, often caused when the brain hits the inside of the skull during a violent shaking or jerking motion.
- Hematoma – Commonly called brain bleed, a hematoma is the pooling of blood from a damaged blood vessel. It can occur between the brain and the skull, between the brain and its protective layer, or in the brain tissue itself. Any of these can be life-threatening.
- Diffuse axonal injury – This severe injury occurs when the brain’s nerve fibers are torn as the brain is violently jolted or shaken. Because connecting nerves are injured, the damage is widespread across various parts of the brain, often resulting in a coma.
Whether you have a head injury that seems minor, or have a loved one diagnosed with a serious TBI, it’s worth consulting with a traumatic brain injury lawyer. Gavel Law Firm provides you with a free consultation where we can assess what you’re entitled to and determine your legal pathways to claim it.
Why You Should Look Out for TBI Symptoms After an Accident
Too many people with brain injuries don’t immediately recognize it. After a car accident or a slip-and-fall accident, for example, victims may experience a headache or confusion that they believe will clear up on its own. But these seemingly negligible experiences often indicate a more serious injury to the brain that needs prompt medical attention.
If you suffered a blow to the head, look out for any of these symptoms of traumatic brain injury:
- Severe headaches
- Headaches that persist for days
- Nausea or vomiting
- Sensitivity to light or sound
- Dizziness or loss of consciousness
- Changes in vision, hearing, or taste
- Tingling, numbness, or weakness of limbs
- Issues in motor skills or balance
- Issues in speech
- Memory problems
- Sleep problems
- Cognitive problems
- Changes in mood or personality.
Once you notice these TBI signs in yourself or your loved one, don’t hesitate to see a doctor. Immediate medical care can spell the difference between a treatable condition and a costly, life-altering brain injury.
Can I Claim Compensation for a Brain Injury in Riverside?
Yes, you may seek compensation in Riverside if you suffered a brain injury caused by someone else’s actions. Examples of situations that lead to a TBI compensation claim include:
- Car collisions
- Motorcycle or bicycle crashes
- Pedestrian accidents
- Workplace accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- ATV crashes
- Boating accidents
- Medical malpractice
If you’re wondering whether you have a valid brain injury claim from your particular accident, approach us at Gavel Law Firm. We’re eager to listen to you and provide sound legal advice suited to your specific situation.
How Much Compensation Do You Get for Traumatic Brain Injury?
Successful brain injury claims often result in five- to six-figure settlements, and in severe cases, outcomes could reach millions of dollars. Industry estimates say the median brain injury verdict as of 2020 is $1.4 million nationwide and nearly $1.6 million in California. However, these amounts should not be considered ‘standard,’ as each case is unique and can have a vastly different outcome.
In general, TBI compensation should cover economic and non-economic damages, such as:
- Medical bills, including emergency room costs, diagnostic tests, brain scans, doctors’ fees, hospital bills, medication, surgeries, and more
- Rehabilitation costs like speech therapy, cognitive therapy, or occupational therapy
- Disability needs such as wheelchairs or home care assistance
- Lost income
- Diminished ability to earn
- Pain and suffering
- Psychological distress
- Diminished quality of life.
In the tragic event that your family member died of a brain injury, you may be able to seek compensation in a wrongful death claim. If successful, this claim could compensate for the related medical expenses, funeral and burial costs, lost benefits, and lost companionship from the deceased.
How Do You Prove Traumatic Brain Injury?
Some brain injuries are immediately apparent, but many others have subtle symptoms that don’t manifest physically. These TBIs are challenging to prove, and if you’re trying to negotiate for fair compensation, you’ll need the help of a competent TBI attorney.
An example of a TBI that’s difficult to establish is post-concussion syndrome. People who sustain this injury after an accident may experience persistent headaches, fatigue, or insomnia, significantly affecting their daily lives. But such experiences are not easy to demonstrate, especially to insurance companies that aim to minimize settlements.
To help prove a traumatic brain injury, take these important steps:
- Document the accident. As much as you can, take photos and videos of the accident scene, including specific damaged spots and surrounding factors (like beer bottles, broken stairs, or cracked pavement). In addition, request the contact details of any potential witnesses.
- Get medical attention right away. Delaying your medical care could be taken to mean that your injury isn’t serious. See a doctor as soon as you can and show up to all appointments. Also, keep all medical records, prescriptions, test results, and receipts.
- File a report. If you got injured in a car accident, secure a crash report from the responding officers. If your injury was from a workplace accident, immediately notify your employer in writing. If, for instance, you slipped or tripped at a store or restaurant, ask the manager to make an accident report.
- Keep a journal. It can be useful to write down your daily experiences after your accident. Highlight anything that’s different from your pre-accident life, such as dizziness, weak limbs, memory issues, or trouble sleeping.
- Contact an attorney. A competent TBI lawyer can build a strong case even when brain injury symptoms are complex or not physically visible. Choose a lawyer who has particular experience handling brain injury cases. You’ll find a reliable attorney when you reach out to Gavel Law Firm.
What Should You Not Do In Case of Traumatic Brain Injury?
- DON’T delay medical care if you sustained a strong blow to the head.
- DON’T shake your head if you’re dazed. Likewise, don’t shake anyone who has just bumped their head.
- DON’T move your head if it is bleeding. Instead, while waiting for medical personnel to arrive, apply a clean cloth on the wound but don’t press on it in case of a skull fracture.
- DON’T wash or attempt to clean a deep head wound as this can hamper blood clotting and invite outside microbes into the wound.
- DON’T attempt to remove any lodged object from the skull.
- DON’T drink alcohol for at least 48 hours after a head injury, or until your physician gives the green light.
How Common are Brain Injuries in California? TBI Statistics
Each year, thousands of Californians sustain a traumatic brain injury that sends them to the hospital or leads to their death. In 2020 alone, more than 36,000 older adults in California suffered a dangerous TBI, according to the California Department of Public Health. Here are more statistics:
- In 2020, there were 15,708 emergency room visits, 17,528 hospitalizations, and 2,912 deaths in California due to traumatic brain injuries among older adults.
- Adults aged 80 to 84 had the highest rates of TBI emergencies, hospitalizations, and fatalities.
- The leading causes of these TBIs included unintentional falls, motor vehicle collisions, and unintentional strikes to the head.
Many brain injuries are a direct result of someone else’s carelessness, such as a reckless driver, a substandard nursing home, or a negligent property owner. This makes these injuries all the more distressing, knowing they could have been prevented. The law allows you to hold accountable those who caused your or your loved one’s head injury. Talk to Gavel Law Firm to learn your options.
Contact a Riverside Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer from Gavel Law Firm
Residents of the Inland Empire now trust Gavel Law Firm for their complex injury claims, including cases of brain injury. Since we opened our doors in 2016, we’ve obtained ideal compensation for injured clients and bereaved families. We do this through our strategic and tenacious legal work while treating each client with sincere care throughout the process.
Your consultation with Gavel Law Firm is free. You also won’t have to pay us any lawyer fees unless and until we win compensation for you. Call us now at (951) 289-0202.