Being injured by someone else’s negligence is challenging even when the injuries are relatively minor, but if you’ve suffered permanent injuries, the situation is obviously that much more difficult. To make matters worse, you’ll need to prove that your injuries are indeed permanent and to advocate for the compensation to which you are entitled. An injury attorney in Austin, TX can help you prove permanent injuries – in pursuit of just compensation that covers the full range of physical, financial, and emotional losses you’ve experienced.
What’s in This Guide
- Permanent Injuries Defined
- Common Permanent Injuries
- Considering Permanent Injuries
- Maximum Medical Improvement
Permanent Injuries Defined
Permanent injuries are those injuries that remain a health concern after you have reached what is called your maximum medical improvement, which means when you have reached the level of recovery (based on reasonable medical probability) where no additional significant health improvements are reasonably expected. To prove a permanent injury, your doctor or medical team (working in close conjunction with you and your personal injury attorney) will ultimately make the determination, and your personal injury attorney will build your strongest claim in support of fair compensation that allows you to better cope with your permanent injury while continuing to move forward with your life.
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Common Permanent Injuries
For some injuries, such as blindness and complete paralysis, it is less difficult to prove their permanency, while others can be more nuanced and will require more medical proof and evidence gathering. There are a variety of serious injuries that commonly qualify as permanent injuries.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injuries are often caused by an impact to the shoulders, neck, or back (traffic accidents of every variety and slip and falls are common culprits). When the spinal cord is badly injured or is completely severed, the result is paralysis, which is a permanent injury that is life-altering and not only requires ongoing medical care but is also very likely to require assistance with the activities of daily living. Even spinal cord injuries that are less serious by comparison, however, can lead to permanent injuries, such as chronic pain and significant losses in range of motion.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are typically caused by a blow to the head or by the severe shaking of the head, and because they affect how the brain itself works, these injuries often have profound physical and emotional consequences that can profoundly reverberate into victims’ futures. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports all of the following dire statistics for TBIs in the United States:
- TBIs are a primary cause of both disability and death.
- In 2019, approximately 166 people died every day from injuries related to TBIs.
- In 2018, more than 223,000 people were hospitalized for injuries related to TBIs.
- Traffic accidents and slips and fall accidents are two of the most common causes of TBIs.
A TBI can be a permanent injury, but proving your case’s permanency can be exceptionally challenging, and you’re well advised to have a dedicated personal injury attorney in your corner.
Burns and Cuts
Serious burns are exceptionally painful injuries that are also extremely susceptible to dangerous infections. Further, as burns heal, the skin and surrounding area thickens and tightens, which can lead to all the following:
- Diminished movement in the affected area.
- Issues with circulation in the affected area.
- Permanent scarring and disfigurement
Cuts that are on are near the face can be similarly disfiguring, and both cuts and burns can qualify as permanent injuries.
A Lost Limb or Amputation
If you lose a limb, hand, or foot, in an accident – or if a limb, hand, or foot needs to be amputated as a result of an accident – it is not difficult to prove permanent injury. Obtaining the compensation to which you are entitled for an injury of this magnitude, however, is critical.
Ongoing Psychological Trauma
The terror and immense pain associated with being injured in a violent accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence can be exceptionally difficult to overcome. Many victims suffer PTSD-like symptoms that can be ongoing and are sometimes classified as permanent injuries. Common examples of these emotional effects include:
- Severe mood swings
- Debilitating anxiety
- Depressive episodes
- Increased irritability
- Difficulty focusing
- Sleep disturbances
- Accident flashbacks
Accident victims who face these challenging emotional setbacks tend to have far more difficulty moving forward toward recovery.
Considering Permanent Injuries
One person’s less-serious injury can be another’s permanent injury – depending on his or her age, overall health, pre-existing conditions, and more. For example, when someone who is nearing retirement age suffers a complicated fracture, it can amount to a permanent injury (while a younger person may bounce back completely if given enough time to do so). Permanent injuries typically alter victims’ lives in ways that are difficult to predict and that are just as difficult to address, which makes permanent injuries exceptionally challenging injuries that should be carefully accounted for in personal injury claims.
Maximum Medical Improvement
While maximum medical improvement means that you are not reasonably expected to improve with continued medical care, it does not mean that the need for ongoing medical care ends. In order to preserve your health to the degree possible and to continue living your fullest life in relation to the limitations imposed by your personal injury, you’ll very likely need to continue receiving medical treatment, which should be included in your personal injury claim.
An Experienced Austin Personal Injury Attorney Can Help Prove Permanent Injuries in Your Case
If you’ve been seriously injured by someone else’s negligence, the formidable personal injury attorneys at The Patel Firm in Austin have the experience and legal skill you need. We’re committed to helping you prove permanent injuries and to knowledgeably campaign for just compensation that covers your losses now and into your future. To learn more, please don’t wait to reach out and contact or call us at 361-400-2036 today.