Marion County Catastrophic Injury Lawyer
A catastrophic injury can wreak havoc on your life. You could face a long recovery, permanent disability, financial hardship, or depression. A personal injury lawsuit may not be able to solve all your problems, but it could help offset some of the losses you have suffered as a direct result of a severe injury
If another person caused you life-threatening harm, a Marion County catastrophic injury lawyer can help you recover damages from the liable party.
What is a Catastrophic Injury?
Catastrophic injuries incapacitate victims, rendering them unable to return to work or properly care for themselves for a significant period of time, if not for their entire lives. They may end up suffering from accident-related chronic medical problems that include:
- Extensive scarring from fires and chemical burns
- Loss of limbs
- Intense pain-and-suffering
- Shortened lifespan
- Brain injury
- Partial or full paralysis from spinal cord injuries
- Partial or total disability
A significant injury is most often caused by a motor vehicle collision, but workplace incidents, medical malpractice, and property accidents are also common. Accidents rooted in negligence on the part of others who have a responsibility to take the proper safety precautions could be held liable for their carelessness and forced to pay for their mistake through a lawsuit.
Negligence Causing Significant Injury
To bring a civil action for a catastrophic injury, plaintiffs must prove that the defendant owed them a duty of care but did not provide it, and because of this failure to oblige, an individual was harmed as a result. For example, if a motorist is speeding or texting and causes an accident, negligence most likely can be established on their part. A Marion County attorney familiar with negligence claims can review all facts of the case to determine if a duty of care was owed to the plaintiff.
Types of Damages in Personal Injury Cases
If a court determines that the negligence of another caused a victim’s injuries, two types of damages can be awarded, compensatory and punitive.
Compensatory damages include economic and non-economic losses meant to reimburse the injured party for financial hardships caused by the injury, such as the cost of medical, rehabilitative, and ongoing care. Current and future lost wages may be reimbursed, as well as payment for pain and suffering and loss of consortium. Compensatory damages for catastrophic injuries are generally higher than in other less severe personal injury accidents.
Punitive damages are rarer and can only be awarded when the plaintiff establishes that the defendant purposely and with malice caused the injury. If the defendant was outrageously reckless and indifferent about the safety of others, and that results in injury, the court may deem an award to the plaintiff in order to discourage future negligent behavior of the same sort. However, it is important to keep in mind that, under West Virginia law, punitive damages may not exceed $500,000. A Marion County catastrophic injury attorney can evaluate an accident and help determine if the victim could be entitled to punitive damages.
Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Cases
State law limits how long someone who was injured in a significant accident has to file a claim for injuries. A lawsuit can be filed up to two years from the date the accident occurs. The court’s mandate for expediency is based on the idea that the longer a victim waits, the harder it will be to recreate or locate the facts of the accident. A legal representative could assist in compiling evidence and meeting filing deadlines.
Contact a Marion County Catastrophic Injury Attorney After a Significant Accident
West Virginia laws governing personal injuries are complex. Yet, if you do not understand them, you risk losing the opportunity to recover damages from the party that harmed you. Contact a Marion County catastrophic injury lawyer for a consultation if you are suffering after a life-threatening accident.