When someone suffers a traumatic brain injury because of another person’s negligence, recklessness, or willful act, the law entitles them to monetary recovery. The team at Reinartz Law Firm will work diligently with our Hackensack brain injury lawyers to ensure that injured people and their families get the best possible outcome for TBI claims.
At Reinartz Law Firm, our personal injury lawyers we have years of experience representing many different and complex personal injury claims, including severe injuries like those involving brain injuries.
You can count on us to be:
- Passionate about helping you with your injury claim
- Detail oriented
- Accountable to you and the law
We work tirelessly on behalf of our clients so they can receive the compensation they deserve for their injuries. Our recent case results speak for themselves.
Table of Contents
What is a TBI?
On average, 176 people in the U.S. die each day from traumatic brain injuries (TBI). Many others will have their lives or the lives of their family members drastically changed following such an injury.
A TBI occurs when the brain’s normal function is disrupted due to a bump, blow, or jolt to the head. Unlike brain injuries from the lack of oxygen, a stroke, infection, or a tumor, a TBI occurs due to an external force or penetration of the brain.
Examples of outside forces that can cause TBIs:
- An impact such as falling and hitting your head
- Penetration caused by gunshot wounds, knives, or other objects
- The rapid movement caused when a vehicle suddenly comes to a stop or hits a large object
Even a mild TBI can render a person unable to care for themselves any longer, change their personality, or can lead to their death. In many cases, a TBI occurs because of a negligent party.
Accidents that Can Cause Traumatic Brain Injuries
Sometimes brain injuries happen because another party didn’t uphold their duty to keep you safe. The injured party can file an insurance claim for compensation against another liable party.
The following accidents often cause TBI and may involve the negligence of another party.
Falls are the most frequent cause of traumatic brain injuries. Workers can fall from a ladder or scaffolding on the job. Shoppers can slip and fall at the grocery store or the mall. Renters can fall at home on flooring or stairs in need of repair. When the fall causes them to hit their head on a hard surface, severe injuries can result.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
Another frequent cause of traumatic brain injury is motor vehicle accidents, as the head is particularly vulnerable to outside forces during accidents. Bicyclists, pedestrians, and motorcyclists are at a higher risk due to the lack of protective gear than those riding inside a vehicle.
Accidents during sports or recreational activities can cause traumatic brain injury, especially in children. High-impact sports like football, baseball, hockey, and skateboarding are frequent causes of brain injuries. Other parties may sometimes be liable for these injuries due to defective products, premise liability, or other reasons.
Products such as toys, machinery, and even cars and their parts are sometimes defective. If a defective product causes a traumatic brain injury, the manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, and retailers can be responsible.
Traumatic Brain Injury Symptoms
With a wide range of symptoms, brain injuries are challenging to diagnose, understand, and treat. Traumatic brain injury symptoms are often different from one patient to the next.
Symptoms can depend on the patient’s:
- Injury type
- Injury severity
Physical symptoms of a mild to moderate TBI:
- Loss of consciousness of a few seconds to a few minutes
- Confusion or disorientation
- Nausea or vomiting
- Fatigue or drowsiness
- Problems with speech
- Difficulty sleeping or sleeping more than usual
- Dizziness or loss of balance
- Blurred vision
- Seeing stars
- Ringing in the ears
- A bad taste in the mouth
- Changes in the ability to smell
- Sensitivity to light or sound
Cognitive or mental symptoms: Memory (long- or short-term) and concentration problems
- Mood changes or mood swings
- Feeling depressed or anxious
Compensation for Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries are one of the most severe life-changing injuries a person can suffer. Many injured individuals and their families file civil lawsuits seeking recovery for TBI damages.
You or your loved one might have a claim worth pursuing if you or your attorney can prove:
- Another party owed a duty to you, such as to repair broken flooring, provide safety equipment at work, not abuse you, stop their vehicle at a red light, provide safe sports gear, or maintain the playing field
- That party did not uphold its duty to you
- Their failure to do so led to your injuries
- Your injuries led to your damages
Damages represent the losses or inconveniences an injured party suffers because of their injury. The type and amounts of the individual’s damages will help determine how much compensation they should receive.
There are damages with a predetermined value, such as:
- Medical bills
- Long-term care and rehabilitation bills
- Life care costs
- Medical devices
- Lost wages
- Property damage (for instance, in a car or slip and fall accident)
Medical bills, receipts, and wage information will be necessary to prove these damages.
Damages that are subjective and do not have a predetermined value include:
Proving these types of damages is challenging and best done with the help of an experienced Hackensack brain injury lawyer.
Sometimes the injured party’s attorney will call witnesses who can provide testimony. The attorneys for both the injured party and the liable party will interview them about the injured party’s life before the injury and what it is like now.
Those with a traumatic brain injury can also keep a daily journal of how their injury affects them. Injured individuals should write about their physical pain, how they feel emotionally, and events and activities they are missing out on. The journal can be useful as evidence.
Traumatic Brain Injuries: High-Value Claims
It can be challenging to value what someone’s life might be like if they didn’t have a traumatic brain injury disability. Their life might be less fulfilling overall. They may be unable to enjoy family and friends, attend events, or participate in activities that once brought them enjoyment.
Personal injury cases involving long-term disabilities and ongoing medical care need to address some unique factors to determine compensation.
- Type of disability: Will continuing medical care and equipment be necessary? Will the individual require help with mobility and daily living activities, such as brushing their teeth or combing their hair? Lifetime daily assistance for individuals with a traumatic brain injury can quickly add up to millions of dollars.
- Evident disfigurement: Compensation for emotional distress increases when permanent and noticeable scarring or disfigurement occurs.
- Age of the victim: Younger traumatic brain injury victims usually receive more compensation as their permanent losses will affect more of their lives. Whereas with an older individual, the injury will not impact as many years of their life.
- Pain and suffering: Those with permanent injuries due to others’ negligence are entitled to much higher compensation for pain, suffering, and emotional distress than the typical injury claimant. Additionally, those who endure multiple painful medical procedures or witness others die in an accident should receive more compensation.
- Future lost wages: Attorneys often hire expert accountants to complete an analysis to determine the wages the injured party might have earned during their lifetime if they did not have a head injury. In addition, the accountant considers the individual’s skills and education, how many more years of employment they might have had, projected wage increases, and the rate expected of inflation.
Costs of a TBI in the U.S.
The costs of a TBI can be astronomical and never-ending. Some victims require a lifetime of medical care and rehabilitation. Some may never go back to work. The direct medical costs of TBI and other related expenses, including lost productivity, are over $60 billion in the U.S. annually.
The lifetime costs for a survivor of a TBI can total $4 million. Victims who require rehabilitation will pay an average of $200,000 or more instead of just $18,000 for those who don’t. Patients who succumb to TBI injuries will incur an average of $450,000 in medical bills before their death. Employment support to help TBI survivors who can return to work can cost an average of $10,000 for the first year alone.
Why Traumatic Brain Injury Compensation is Essential
TBIs can cause uncomfortable symptoms, complications, and permanent changes within the brain. Severe traumatic brain injuries are life-altering. The financial and emotional expenses resulting from a traumatic brain injury can be astronomical, requiring legal help to obtain fair compensation.
Suppose you or someone you love is suffering from a TBI because of another person’s actions. In that case, you should strongly consider hiring a skilled Hackensack brain injury attorney. Legal representation is especially necessary if recovery will take a long time or will not happen. Without a lawyer on your side, you might never receive the compensation your injuries require.
Hackensack Brain Injury FAQs
What is Your Case Worth?
To determine your financial damages, add up your medical bills, lost wages, and any other expenses related to your injuries. Generally, attorneys advise their personal injury clients that their pain and suffering is worth one to two times the amount of their financial damages.
Additional factors that affect what your injury claim is worth:
- The facts of a case
- The extent of the traumatic brain injury
- If a secondary injury occurred
- The degree of hospitalization and medical treatment
Since a TBI can be a long-term health issue or even cause a permanent disability, those suffering from one deserve more compensation. Sometimes they deserve as much as four to five times the amount of their economic damages.
What are the Legal Concerns of a Traumatic Brain Injury?
Traumatic brain injuries are medically and legally complicated. Brain injuries need immediate medical attention, expert medical care, and legal experience.
A seasoned Hackensack brain injury attorney can help you with numerous legal matters surrounding your injury, including:
What are the Long-Term Effects of a TBI?
As many as 80,000 to 90,000 individuals who suffer a TBI each year develop long-term disabilities associated with their TBI. The long-term effects of such a catastrophic injury are far-reaching, potentially impacting nearly every facet of a victim’s life.
Common long-term TBI effects include:
- Slurred speech
- Ringing in the ears
- Balance problems
- Strange smells
- Problems with vision
- Occasional heartbeat irregularities or changes in blood pressure
- Sensitivity to light and noise
- Feeling overwhelmed
- Easy to distract
Evidence also shows that TBIs can increase the risk of progressive brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy, and Parkinson’s disease. You can recover compensation for these expensive and fatal conditions if we can show early symptoms connected to your accident.
Did You or Someone You Love Suffer a TBI? Call a Hackensack Brain Injury Lawyer for Help Today
At Reinartz Law Firm, we help victims with head injuries and TBIs recover financially. We know the burden of your damages and the uphill battles you must endure. When the insurance company doesn’t take your injuries seriously and responds with inadequate settlement offers, we can help. Don’t let them take advantage of you; hire a legal advocate instead to seek what is rightfully yours. For your free case review with our firm, call (201) 778-4878 or contact us online today.
"Richard guided me in my suit and made me feel confident in my decisions during my entire case. He made recommendations that I otherwise, would not have known about."