Recovering compensation after a catastrophic injury is of vital importance, because after such an injury you may no longer be able to work and earn, and you could be facing life-long medical expenses. The period immediately after a catastrophic accident is of high stress, and without legal guidance you may be unable to take the right steps in a timely manner.
Read on to learn what you need to do in order to develop a strong case for compensation.
A catastrophic injury, as the name suggests, is a serious one. Recovery can take time and often, complete recovery may not be possible.
In the absence of a clear legal definition as to what constitutes a catastrophic injury, you need to consult experts. It is advisable to hire a lawyer who can use the services of medical experts to determine the exact nature and severity of the injury.
An injury can be considered catastrophic if you require live-in care or a full-time assistant. A decline in the quality of life is another indicator. Catastrophic injuries include traumatic brain injuries, loss of limb, loss of sight, severe burns, spinal cord injuries, and organ damage.
Events leading to such injuries are usually followed by more than one surgery, a long recovery process, and mental trauma.
Apart from the medical aspect, you need to consider the legal aspect of a catastrophic injury suffered in Texas. To begin with, the nature of the injuries necessitates a very long recovery process, substantial medical expenses, and pain and suffering. The compensation that you deserve will be higher. And because of the high amounts involved, the process for obtaining compensation requires greater effort because the insurance companies will be loath to pay huge amounts. It can set a precedent for them in such cases, and they will fight tooth and nail to resist substantial compensation payouts.
Also, the defendant’s insurance cover may fall woefully short of meeting your medical expenses. Punitive damages can be a help. Or, you may have to file a separate lawsuit against the defendant’s personal assets. In Texas, there is no cap on compensatory damages. However, punitive damages are capped at twice the economic compensatory damages. The amount cannot be more than $750,000 for non-economic compensatory damages.
Damages for catastrophic accidents are awarded based on costs that the jury ascertains to be reasonable for procedures, and also from precedents.
Since Texas is a comparative fault state, the compensation you receive will depend on the extent to which you’re guilty.