Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyers Serving Maryland, Virginia And DC
Have you been the victim of a Traumatic Brain Injury or TBI in Maryland or Virginia?
OUR MARYLAND AND VIRGINIA BRAIN INJURY LAWYERS CAN HELP
Our team of lawyers is standing by ready to answer your questions and help you take action, make confident decisions and get the assistance and compensation you deserve. If you have suffered a serious injury to head, brain or spinal cord, and would like to speak with an attorney, call us today for a free consultation.
About Traumatic Brain Injury or TBI
One of the most common and pervasive forms of injury to the head is known as a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Whether your strike your head while playing a sport or slip and fall on milk at the grocery store, a TBI can quickly form inside your skull. The nature of the injury combined with the severity of the side effects is what makes a TBI so serious. A TBI is created when the head is hit with such a force that the brain hits against the inner layer of its covering. As we age our bodies recover less quickly and our brains are less able to physically handle trauma. As TBIs are so common, it is important to recognize them, seek treatment when necessary, and understand the severity of injury a TBI can create.
Are you or a relative suffering with physical pain or other neurological problems caused by a serious injury to your head, brain or spinal cord?
Are you currently asking yourself questions like:
- Is there a difference between a normal injury lawyer and a brain injury lawyer?
- Where should I go for sound medical advice about my head injury?
- What do I say to my insurance company?
- Should I give a recorded statement?
- What if I lose my job because I am injured and can’t work?
- Who is going to take care of my family if I can’t work?
- How do I know if I’ve suffered a serious brain injury or just a mild concussion?
- What kind of compensation am I entitled to after suffering a severe head injury that wasn’t my fault?
SYMPTOMS OF TBI
Accident victims who have suffered from traumatic injuries to their brains usually have their lives irrevocably altered and any number of serious and debilitating side effects can result. Victims may be unable to hold down a job, provide for a family, and in many cases, be unable to care for themselves. Additionally, victims of closed head injuries and other types of brain damage, can suffer from other less obvious side effects including but not limited to:
- Loss of memory
- Blurred vision
- Hormonal disturbances
- Increases in anger or other emotional instabilities
- Depression and anxiety
WHY YOU MAY NEED A LAWYER IF YOU HAVE SUFFERED A SERIOUS HEAD OR BRAIN INJURY
Traumatic brain injuries are complicated, expensive and life altering. Rehabilitation can take years in some cases. The big insurance companies know this and they can afford to hire aggressive and experienced defense attorneys to defend these claims. If you aren’t similarly equipped, you may already be at a disadvantage.
TBI CLAIMS CAN BE EXPENSIVE TO PROSECUTE
TBI claims can be some of the most expensive claims for the insurance companies to pay because victims of TBI often require lifetime care plans or extensive future medical care. As a result, insurance companies sometimes do everything in their power to minimize their own losses. They will often spend large amounts of money to hire medical experts and other liability experts to draw a moat between your claim for injuries and their pocketbook.
CAUSATION OF A TBI CAN BE DIFFICULT TO PROVE
In many cases, establishing a link between an injury to one’s head and a more subjective symptom can be difficult. Take loss of memory for example. We frequently deal with insurance companies who take the position that the TBI victim is faking the emotional or physical symptoms or otherwise exaggerating symptoms. Some injuries cannot be seen on an x-ray or an MRI imaging study. Some injuries require more complex neuro-psychological evaluations to determine whether there has been a loss of brain function.
This can be difficult for a layperson/claimant to prove. Especially when they are trying to make their case to a well-funded and financially motivated insurance company.
The bottom line is that it is very important that you have an experienced brain injury lawyer working for you, who not only has a deep understanding of brain injury law, but who also cares about you and your case and is willing to fight for your rights.
SPORTS-RELATED CONCUSSION INJURIES
A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury (TBI) that occurs when the brain comes into contact with the interior of the skull, whether due to some exterior force that causes violent head movement or a blow. The skull is extremely effective at protecting the fragile brain from injury, and the fluid surrounding it acts as an excellent buffer. However, these tissues are not a sufficient barrier safeguarding the brain injury against all impacts.
When the brain strikes against the interior of the skull, the impact rips layers of membranes and produces chemical changes. For one, a concussion causes free radicals to build up and cause stress. The brain responds by sending specialized immunity cells to repair the affected area, which can disrupt neural connectivity and leave the brain extremely vulnerable for some time.
Symptoms of Concussion
The disruption in the brain’s chemistry as a result of concussion leads to a variety of symptoms in the immediate aftermath, including:
- Confusion, dizziness, and disorientation;
- Blurred vision and the inability to focus;
- Ringing in the ears;
- Headaches, ranging from dull to throbbing;
- Problems with balance and coordination;
- Nausea and vomiting;
- Memory loss;
- A metallic taste in the mouth;
- Powerful, heightened emotions and sudden changes in emotion;
- Slurred or incoherent speech;
- Trouble sleeping; and,
- Many others.
Note that loss of consciousness is one symptom, but blacking out is not a definitive determination of whether a person has experienced a concussion. In addition, it is important to appreciate that professional athletes are not the only players that can suffer a concussion during competition. Children and amateurs are also at risk.
Long-Term Effects of Concussion
Even when the immediate symptoms of a concussion have subsided, the long-term implications may be considerable. The extensive chemical changes can lead to abnormal brain wave activity and partial deterioration of motor pathways, which may mean attention disorders for the victim. Some athletes display symptoms similar to those associated with Parkinson’s Disease, such as memory loss and speech issues.
Sustaining multiple concussions increases the risk of extensive brain damage, especially when the subsequent injuries occur before the brain heals and is still at a vulnerable point.
Liability in Sports-Related Concussion Cases
In general, a person who is injured due to someone else’s negligence can recover compensation for losses related to medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. However, there are some special rules that apply to sports-related head injuries because the victim is voluntarily engaging in risky behavior.
Assumption of the Risk: This concept is a defense under Maryland law, which essentially means that you lose the right to file a claim for your losses if you exposed yourself to an unnecessary risk. To avoid liability, a defendant must prove:
- You had knowledge of the risk;
- You appreciated the nature of the risk; and,
- You voluntarily decided to engage in the activity.
Preventable Injuries: Many sports-related concussions are truly accidental and assumption of the risk may prevent recovery. However, where another person’s conduct amounts to certain levels of negligence or reckless, leading to a risk that was preventable, this defense will not work. You may be able to obtain compensation from:
- Coaches or school officials that ignore the signs of sports-related head injuries;
- Owners of a negligently maintained sports facility;
- Trainers or medical professionals that do not provide proper care;
- Manufacturers of defective equipment;
- Other players; and,
- Many more potential parties.
Damages for Sports-Related Concussion and Head Trauma
As in other personal injury cases in Maryland and Virginia, you can recover compensation for such losses as:
- The costs related to your immediate medical treatment;
- Expenses associated with your long-term, ongoing care;
- Lost wages, if you missed work due to your concussion or head injury;
- Loss of future income, in the event that your head trauma leads to cognitive problems that prevent you from returning to your normal employment;
- Pain and suffering, both physical and emotional;
- Losses related to your personal relationships, such as your spouse, children, and other loved ones; and,
- Other damages that depend upon the specifics of your circumstances.
STATISTICS REGARDING TBI
The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that there are 1.5 million people who suffer a traumatic brain injury every year. Around 85,000 people suffer long-term disabilities from TBI. Every year 50,000 people will die from the effects of a TBI. These numbers do not reflect the patients who are seen and treated for a TBI in the emergency room annually.
TBIs can result almost anytime the head is struck by a foreign object or is whipped around. The most common causes of TBIs are a car accident, a firearm, or a fall. Car accidents are particularly common because a person might hit their head during the impact or their head might jerk forward without touching anything. The impact can stop the body at such a speed and with such force that the brain inevitably hits the inside of its covering. The chances of damage are increased when the head actually hits something like the steering wheel or dashboard. It goes without saying that a bullet would create trauma to the brain. Falls are similar to car accidents in that it doesn’t always put a person in the clear to know that their head never made contact with the ground; the force of the fall itself might be enough to create a TBI.
When a TBI goes untreated or unrecognized the side effects can become more severe. Depending on the level of TBI suffered (mild or severe), the symptoms will vary. Lack of consciousness, loss of short-term memory, headaches after trauma, nausea and blurred vision are all general indications that a patient has a TBI. Helping to monitor a person’s behavior for a short time after a head injury can go a long way in preventing a TBI from worsening. If someone exhibits these symptoms after a head injury, help them seek medical attention.
When you suffer a head injury, medical bills can add up fast and the added stress will not help you on your road to recovery. At our firm we are dedicated to helping you and those you love seek compensation when you have been wrongfully injured. Contact our team today and let us help you seek the care you need.
WHAT CAN BOB KATZ DO FOR YOU?
Bob Katz can provide comprehensive legal services for you and your family. From the first meeting until the case is closed, Bob and his legal team will work tirelessly to answer your questions and resolve each and every aspect of your brain injury claim. We will even come to you if you can’t make it into one of our offices.
Our attorneys will work with you and your family to:
- Speak with all insurance companies involved and negotiate on your behalf
- Advise you on legal matters related to your case
- Consult with medical experts
- Resolve your property damage loss claims at no extra cost to you
- Properly document your injuries for you
- Direct you to medical professionals or a doctor you can trust
- Set up Estates, where applicable and advise you and your family on such matters
- Secure witnesses and other liability witnesses
- Document evidence necessary to prove your claim in a court of law
- Take care of all legal aspects of your claim, so you can focus on getting better.
- Help stave off the medical bill collectors until your case is resolved, so you can have peace of mind and focus on your recovery.
- Provide you with the resources you need to stand up to big insurance companies.
- Help you obtain compensation for medical bills, lost time from work, loss of life or loss of enjoyment of life
- Help you obtain compensation for future medical benefits
- Help you create a life care plan to provide for your family
- Take your case to trial to obtain justice for you and your family
If you’ve been injured in Maryland or in Virginia, through no fault of your own, and believe you may have sustained a traumatic brain injury, consult with an attorney today. Those responsible for causing your injury may be liable for not only the medical expense you’ve incurred and are likely to incur, but also for the pain, suffering disruptions to your life as well.