Morgantown Burn Injury Lawyer
When you or someone who you love suffers a burn injury due to another’s negligence, treatment and recovery could be lengthy and costly. If you have been badly burned and the incident was not your fault, contact a Morgantown burn injury lawyer right away for sound legal counsel and advice. A personal injury attorney could look into your case, collect the evidence needed to determine how the injury occurred, identify who was negligent, and fight zealously to hold the at-fault person or company accountable.
Degrees of Burn Injury
The worse the individual’s burn injury is, the lengthier and more costly their recovery time will be. Understanding the severity of the burn injuries could help victims and their Morgantown attorneys determine how much compensation they should pursue.
The severities of burn degrees are as follows:
- First degree — The skin becomes irritated and red but typically only requires first aid.
- Second degree — The individual’s skin becomes blistered and painful without treatment.
- Third degree — The victim’s pain is severe and their flesh whitens, requiring prompt medical attention.
- Fourth degree — The skin blackens, and muscle, bone, and nerves could be destroyed. Reaching a full recovery is not guaranteed, even if the person receives emergency medical care.
- Fifth and sixth degree — These burns are especially deep or widespread and are often fatal.
Causes of Burn Injuries
Numerous types of incidents or accidents could cause a burn injury, including defective product manufacturing, mining incidents, and industrial accidents. Furthermore, while individuals who work around certain substances could be at higher risk of suffering burn injuries, these accidents could even happen in someone’s home. Among the most frequent types of burn injuries and their causes include:
- Chemical burns — Individuals who are exposed to dangerous chemicals at work could be burned by acids or other toxic substances
- Thermal burns — A thermal burn occurs when the person’s skin contacts a hot substance, such as scalding liquids, a hot metal surface, or open flames
- Electrical burns — If the individual touches something that conducts an electrical current, they could suffer electrical burns
- Friction burns — A friction burn happens when an object rubs against someone’s skin, causing it to break
- Cold burns — In certain instances, very cold temperatures could freeze someone’s skin
A burn injury attorney in Morgantown could listen to the injured party’s account of the incident and review their medical records to pinpoint the source of the burn.
Financial Recovery for Burn Injuries
Besides medical treatment, burn victims often suffer intense physical and emotional pain. Typically, compensation could be sought for damages such as medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering.
Recoverable medical costs could include treatment, hospitalization, medication, and therapy. The plaintiff could also recover payments for past, present, and future lost earnings.
Laws Governing Burn Injury Claims
All states establish a statute of limitations for personal injury cases, which is the time frame in which the individual must file the lawsuit in the state’s civil court system. In accordance with West Virginia Code §55-2-12, burn injury victims have two years from the date of the accident to file their lawsuit. If the plaintiff fails to file within this time limit, the court could refuse to hear case.
West Virginia civil courts adhere to the comparative negligence rule when assessing damage awards in personal injury matters. A determination of liability on the part of the plaintiff does not necessarily bar them from recovering financial damages, but it could reduce their amount of compensation.
For example, if the jury assigns a burn injury victim 30 percent of the fault and attributes the remaining 70 percent to the defendant, the plaintiff can only recover 70 percent of their total damages. In the event that the plaintiff was equally responsible or more at fault than the defendant, they would be barred from recovery.
Set Up a Consultation with a Morgantown Burn Injury Attorney
If you were badly burned due to another’s negligence, consider seeking qualified legal representation from a Morgantown burn injury lawyer. An attorney could provide compassionate counsel about your options for recovery. To schedule an initial case review, call today.