When referring to an injury that is so severe that it permanently alters a person’s everyday life, the term “catastrophic injury” is frequently used in legal contexts. Catastrophic injuries come in a variety of forms, and the circumstances that give rise to such severe cases might fluctuate greatly from person to person.
Although catastrophic injuries are frequently fatal, they can also significantly lower overall quality of life, including the capacity to carry out everyday tasks or activities. You might be entitled to compensation if you were involved in an accident that left you with a catastrophic injury.
Proving Fault and Establishing Liability
In California, a plaintiff must establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the defendant was responsible for their injuries before they are entitled to damages. Proving someone is responsible for injuries establishes liability.
No damages, no matter how severe or significant the injuries, may be recovered if fault cannot be shown. While demonstrating who is liable, and why, may be difficult, fault is not always obvious.
This occurs more frequently in cases involving catastrophic injuries because at-fault defendants or their insurance carriers will attempt to disassociate themselves from liability when confronted with sizable damage claims.
The next step after establishing liability is to determine what damages are payable once fault has been established. A plaintiff who has been harmed generally has a claim for compensatory damages.
The goal of compensatory damages is to give the lawsuit’s plaintiff enough money to completely cover the true cost of their loss or harm. Special damages and general damages are the two main categories of compensatory damages.
What are Special Damages?
The monetary compensation for replacement costs for items lost or spent as a result of an injury is known as special damages. Special damages can include mostly everything related to the medical recovery from the catastrophic injury.
Economic losses, such as medical costs, lost wages, and other direct costs incurred as a result of the harm are referred to as special damages. In a personal injury case, the plaintiff is entitled to compensation for reasonable medical costs. The plaintiff must demonstrate that any prior medical expenses are reasonable in light of the cost of the treatment, its necessity, and the fact that it was necessary to treat the plaintiff’s injuries as a result of the defendant’s negligence.
Establishing special damages can be easy as long as you keep record and receipt of all medical expenses related to the injuries.
General Damages vs. Punitive Damages
General damages, as opposed to special damages, compensate a victim for intangible losses sustained as a result of the defendant’s actions.
Estimates of loss resulting from an injury that does not include actual financial outlays are included in general damages. Every case is unique, and there is no formula or “one-size-fits-all” way to determine general damages. Ultimately, the award for general damages is up to a jury.
The court may grant the plaintiff “punitive damages” where the defendant acted with severe carelessness or with the intent to cause harm. In addition to compensatory damages, punitive damages are given in order to hold the offender accountable for their careless actions.
Contact the Catastrophic Injury Attorneys at Abir Cohen Treyzon Salo, LLP
Call the Los Angeles catastrophic injury attorneys at Abir Cohen Treyzon Salo, LLP if you or a loved one has suffered a catastrophic injury.
We can retrace the events of your case using our expertise and resources, and we will strive to get you the maximum amount of compensation to which you are entitled. For a free consultation, call us right away at 833-ACTS-LAW or send us an email.