How Much Is a Traumatic Brain Injury Worth?
Many people who suffer injuries due to the negligence of others wonder how much they might secure in compensation through personal injury claims. A personal injury lawsuit is often the only option for recouping medical expenses, lost income, and property damage after an accident caused by negligence. Additionally, plaintiffs in personal injury cases can hire a West Virginia brain injury lawyer and also secure damages for their pain and suffering caused by negligence.
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is one of the most severe injuries a person might suffer. The victim can sue the negligent party for damages when an individual suffers a TBI due to another person’s negligence. Personal injury lawsuits based on TBIs often lead to substantial settlements and case awards.
Damages in Traumatic Brain Injury Cases
Plaintiffs in TBI lawsuits can secure various types of compensation, similar to other personal injury cases. Damages in TBI lawsuits can be substantially larger than other personal injury claims for less catastrophic injuries due to the severity of most TBIs and the nature of their long-lasting effects. Plaintiffs who sue for damages in TBI lawsuits can secure compensation for:
- Property damage. If the defendant’s actions caused property damage as well as injury, the plaintiff may sue for the costs of repairing or replacing the damaged property.
- Medical expenses. The plaintiff can sue for all medical expenses resulting from the defendant’s negligence. These can include emergency room fees, hospital bills, ambulance fees, and long-term medical costs. It’s important to note that plaintiffs can only sue for medical expenses that directly resulted from the defendant’s actions, but, due to the nature of TBIs, these expenses can be significant and ongoing for quite a long time.
- Lost income. If a TBI prevents an individual from returning to work for an extended time, the victim can sue for the wages he or she would have earned in that time. If a TBI prevents the victim from ever working again, he or she can sue for the wages that would have been reasonably expected to be earned in the future.
- Pain and suffering. “Pain and suffering” applies to the physical pain, mental anguish, and emotional suffering a plaintiff experienced as a result of a defendant’s actions. TBIs can leave victims partially or completely incapacitated for a long time. The mental shock of losing the use of parts of the body can also be devastating. Plaintiffs’ punitive damages are often the largest damages sought in TBI lawsuits. A TBI victim who incurs $25,000 in medical expenses will likely sue for that amount in direct compensation for medical expenses and also for $100,000 or more in pain and suffering damages, for example.
- Punitive damages. A judge may award the plaintiff punitive damages if a defendant’s behavior was grossly negligent or intentional. Punitive damages “punish” defendants and aim to discourage similar acts in the future.
The amount of compensation a plaintiff can ultimately collect will hinge on his or her attorney’s skills. A good West Virginia personal injury attorney will help a TBI client gather all the evidence necessary for building a personal injury lawsuit and explore every possible avenue for compensation. There is no single answer for how much a TBI lawsuit will be worth. Plaintiffs typically receive substantial amounts of compensation for TBI damages due to their devastating nature relative to other injuries.