Brain injuries are among the most devastating possible consequences of an accident. These serious injuries can affect your entire life, including how you perform day-to-day tasks, what kind of work you are able to do, and how you are able to interact with friends and family.
After a serious accident causes a brain injury, it is important to understand your right to compensation and the personal injury lawsuit process. You could be eligible for a wide variety of damages, including compensation for pain and suffering and other negative consequences of the accident.
If you or a loved one suffered a brain injury in a car accident, workplace accident, or other negligent situation, contact Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi. Our skilled attorneys have more than 80 years’ worth of combined trial experience, meaning you can rest assured that your case will be ready to go to court if necessary. We are committed to the thorough investigation and aggressive pursuit of your case, and we have achieved a number of significant verdicts and settlements for victims of brain injuries in New York and New Jersey.
Compensation in a Personal Injury Lawsuit
Monetary awards in personal injury cases are split into two categories: compensatory and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are awarded to compensate the injured for the monetary and emotional costs of the defendant’s negligence.
Compensatory damages may include compensation for:
- All medical expenses related to the injury (including future long-term care, rehabilitation costs, hospitalization costs, and ambulatory care)
- Lost wages
- Decreased earning potential in the future
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
There are no limits on compensatory damages in the state of New Jersey. Therefore, as long as you can prove the amount of damages (and that the defendant’s conduct was the direct cause of those damages), you are eligible to recover them.
Punitive damages are limited to certain cases of particularly egregious conduct. If the defendant caused your injury intentionally, or their behavior leading up to the accident was extremely negligent or intolerable, the court can award punitive damages. These damages are designed to punish the defendant for inappropriate behavior and discourage people from the same behavior in the future.
About Brain Injuries
According to the Mayo Clinic, a traumatic brain injury occurs when an external mechanical force causes brain dysfunction. Traumatic brain injuries can be caused by a blow to the head, such as during a car accident, or an object penetrating the skull, such as a bullet or broken piece of the skull.
The severity of brain injuries varies widely depending on several factors. “Mild” traumatic brain injuries, which are still extremely dangerous, can result in brief unconsciousness or change in mental status. Severe traumatic brain injuries can result in prolonged amnesia, unconsciousness, and even lifelong disability.
The most common form of mild traumatic brain injury is a concussion. Concussions, like other brain injuries, are most commonly caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head. More than 300,000 concussions occur in the U.S. every year among athletes alone—not to mention the vast number that occur outside of sports.