Traumatic brain injuries, also known as TBIs, are brain injuries that are caused by physical force. Car accidents, slip and falls, and other types of accidents can lead to traumatic brain injuries. If someone else’s actions caused your traumatic brain injury, you could have the right to pursue a claim for your damages. Understandably, prospective clients want to know, What is the value of a traumatic brain injury in California? To learn more about the potential value of your case, speak with one of our skilled California personal injury lawyers.
At Wells Call, we have over three decades of experience helping clients just like you recover financial compensation for their injuries. We understand how scary a traumatic brain injury can be and the fears you can face about paying for future treatment. Let us help you fight for the compensation you deserve.
Like other types of personal injury claims, the value of a traumatic brain injury claim in California will vary between victims. There is no average settlement amount because no two claims are exactly alike. Someone who suffers a catastrophic brain injury will have a higher claim value than someone who had a minor concussion with no lasting side effects. Some of the most important factors that will determine the value of your claim include:
The compensation you receive for a traumatic brain injury claim can also vary depending on whether you share any responsibility for the accident. If so, your payment amount will be reduced by your percentage of fault. California is what’s known as a pure comparative negligence state. That means that even if you are mostly at fault for the accident, you could still recover some money for your injuries. For example, if a jury finds you 20% at fault, you will receive 80% of the award. If the jury finds you 85% at fault, you will receive 15%.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), almost three million people seek emergency treatment for traumatic brain injuries every year. These numbers have been increasing every year, which is concerning as at least 50,000 people die from their brain injuries each year. While many brain injuries are relatively mild and victims make a full recovery, traumatic brain injuries contribute to a third of all injury-related deaths across the country.
Numerous injuries and traumatic events can lead to a brain injury. The severity of your damages will depend on the nature of your injury and how much force was involved. Some of the most common causes of traumatic brain injuries include the following events:
Certain age groups are at greater risk for traumatic brain injury, especially children under four, young adults between 15 and 24, and older adults 60 and over.
Symptoms of a traumatic brain injury will vary depending on the severity of your injuries. For mild traumatic brain injuries, symptoms can include:
Symptoms in moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries can include:
You may notice some of these symptoms in your child after suffering a brain injury. They may not be able to communicate their symptoms, so observing them closely after an injury is important. Watch for changes in your child’s behavior, such as losing interest in their toys, suddenly not eating or nursing, etc.
If you bring a successful traumatic brain injury claim, you could be awarded several different compensation types. Depending on the circumstances of your case, you could receive money for your:
In limited cases, you could receive compensation for punitive damages, which are designed to “punish” the defendant and discourage them from acting in the same way again. The court will award punitive damages only in cases where the defendant acted in a manner that is considered egregious, such as driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs or drag racing.
Victims usually receive compensation in one of two ways. The first method involves a settlement with the at-fault party’s insurance company. It’s not uncommon for negotiations to take place right up until trial. A settlement is when you and the defendant’s insurance company reach an agreement on how much they are willing to pay for your brain injury. If you are unable to resolve your case through negotiations, it will likely go to trial. Most injury claims resolve through settlement negotiations, but some do end up going to trial.
The second way to receive compensation is through a verdict. Usually, a jury hears your case and decides whether you deserve any compensation and how much. They will also determine what percentage of fault you had, impacting how much of the award you will receive.
If you are wondering whether you need a lawyer to assist with your traumatic brain injury claim, the answer is almost always yes. Unless your injury was very minor or you have already negotiated a fair offer from the insurance company, you may not benefit from a personal injury attorney. In most cases, insurance companies are not likely to settle for a fair amount as brain injury claims are typically worth a lot.
Insurance companies will take advantage of the fact that you don’t have any legal or negotiating experience. They may argue that your brain injury isn’t that severe, or they will try to assign a high percentage of liability to you. An experienced California personal injury lawyer will make sure the insurance company is not mistreating you.
Your claim may require numerous experts who can testify that your injury was consistent with the facts of the accident and that your treatment was reasonable and necessary. The at-fault party’s insurance will be looking for any way to reduce the payout. By claiming that your brain injury wasn’t that severe or that your full treatment wasn’t necessary, they can save their company money. Hiring the right experts is crucial, which is why you need a skilled legal advocate on your side.
You have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit in a personal injury claim. In most cases, you have only two years from the date of the accident to file. If you miss that deadline, the court can throw your claim out, and the at-fault party doesn’t have to pay you—even if there was an offer on the table. Your attorney will make sure all claim deadlines are met and that your case is timely filed.
If you suffered a traumatic brain injury in California due to someone else’s negligence or intentional actions, you deserve to be compensated for your damages. A skilled California personal injury attorney can fight for the compensation you are owed. At Wells Call, we have the necessary experience and the skills to help you get the maximum compensation possible. Since 1984, we’ve recovered more than half a billion dollars for our clients. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation to learn more about how we can help. We have offices conveniently located in Fairfield, Napa, Richmond, Vallejo, Woodland, and Vacaville. Meet with one of our seasoned attorneys to learn what your traumatic brain injury claim is worth.