Life-altering injuries can happen in the blink of an eye. These incidents are even more tragic when they are caused by another person’s careless or reckless behavior. A singe negligent action could lead to a devastating injury that prevents you from working, interacting with your family, or caring for yourself in the same way as you did before.
If someone else’s negligence contributed to an accident that left you or a family member with a severe, permanent injury, consult with an Arlington Heights catastrophic injury lawyer. A skilled attorney could guide you through the process of getting money damages to compensate for your losses and help ensure you get the care you require going forward.
When is an Injury Catastrophic?
Some states define catastrophic injury, but Illinois does not. Generally, this term is used to describe injuries that dramatically change the quality of a person’s life and the range of activities available to them.
Common types of catastrophic injuries include:
- Spinal cord damage
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Severe burns
- Permanent loss of organ system functioning
Other injuries might be considered catastrophic if they leave the injured person unable to work or live independently.
Common Causes of Traumatic Injuries in Arlington Heights
Devastating accidents can happen anywhere and at any time. However, there are several scenarios that often cause traumatic injuries. These include:
At the Law Offices of R.F. Wittmeyer, Ltd., our local attorneys have extensive experience handling various types of catastrophic injury cases. One of our skilled lawyers in the area could evaluate the circumstances of an accident and identify who may be held accountable in a civil claim.
Compensatory Damages for Severe Injuries
Catastrophic injury victims often need significant treatment and rehabilitation, sometimes even for the rest of their lives. In a civil claim, compensatory damages can help ensure that an injured person gets all the treatment, aftercare, and support that their condition requires. A catastrophic injury attorney at our Arlington Heights office could help calculate the full extent of a victim’s losses.
Economic Damages for Traumatic Injury Recovery
Economic damages are meant to compensate for losses that can be documented or projected with a reasonable degree of certainty. These could include:
- Past and future medical treatments
- Rehabilitative therapy
- Home health care services
- Necessary home renovations
- Durable medical equipment
- Lost income and lost future earning opportunities
Non-Economic Damages for Catastrophic Accidents
Another component of compensatory damages are non-economic damages. These are meant to compensate for the changes in an injured person’s quality of life after their accident. Depending on the specific case, an award of non-economic damages could include:
- Physical pain and emotional suffering
- Lost enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
Punitive Damages Available in Certain Cases
Unlike compensatory damages, punitive damages are not available in personal injury cases where a defendant’s conduct was merely negligent. However, 735 Illinois Compiled Statutes §5/2-604.1 allows a plaintiff and their attorney to seek punitive damages if a defendant’s behavior was malicious, intentional, or grossly negligent.
For instance, a court might award punitive damages if a drunk driver caused catastrophic physical harm to another person. Punitive damages also might be appropriate when a company puts profit over safety and knowingly allows a defective product on the market that causes severe injury. At the Law Offices of R.F. Wittmeyer, Ltd., our lawyers are skilled at assessing the circumstances of a catastrophic injury to determine whether punitive damages might be warranted.
Seek Help from an Arlington Heights Catastrophic Injury Attorney
A catastrophic accident can forever change the lives of the victim and their family members. Because these types of injuries cause such devastating harm, it is crucial to work with a compassionate legal advocate to hold the responsible party accountable and get much needed compensation.
If you were hurt in a severe accident, an Arlington Heights catastrophic injury lawyer at our firm could tirelessly pursue your legal claim and provide dedicate representation on your behalf. We have over thirty years of experience helping accident victims get the restitution they deserve. Call us today to discuss your case and learn how we could help.