Cash Krugler Fredericks has vast experience representing individuals who have suffered traumatic brain injuries (TBI) as a result of violent impacts or injuries. Traumatic brain injuries are complicated injuries and the prosecution of cases involving a traumatic brain injury can be equally complex.
The National Institutes of Health defines a traumatic brain injury as an acquired condition that occurs when a sudden trauma causes damage to the brain. A TBI can be caused by a violent blow or jolt to the head that causes the brain to collide with the skull, a crush injury or an object penetrating the skull. A TBI can also occur without a violent, direct blow where an individual’s skull is subjected to rapid acceleration or deceleration. Car accidents are one of the most common acceleration/deceleration causes of TBIs. For example, when a stopped car is struck from behind at a high rate of speed, a passenger’s skull may accelerate and stop suddenly, causing the brain to slam violently against the skull. TBIs can result in bruising of the brain, torn tissues, bleeding and other physical damage to the brain that can result in long-term complications or death.
According to the Center for Disease Control, approximately 1.7 million people sustain traumatic brain injuries every year. Depending upon the area of the brain affected, an individual with a TBI may be unable to process information in the same manner or at the same speed as they could before the injury; their short-term and long-term memory may be impacted; they may become irritable, hostile or even violent; their judgment may be affected or limited; communication may become stifled; their ability to control and conform their behavior can be impaired and they may suffer devastating headaches and other symptoms. Compounding this, an individual with a TBI may appear outwardly “normal,” while suffering from one or more of these symptoms, causing them to feel alienated, even from their immediate family.
Cases involving TBIs present several unique challenges in litigation. Because a traumatic brain injury may exist without showing up on a CT or MRI, and the symptoms may be subtle and non-specific, TBIs often go undiagnosed. As a result, victims of traumatic brain injuries rarely receive immediate treatment for their physical and cognitive impairment, and their medical records after an injury may not mention “head injury” or “cognitive impairment.” It is only later, if lucky, that a health care professional validates and diagnoses the victims’ injury and treatment finally ensues. As a result, insurance adjusters and defense attorneys may often accuse or imply that individuals with TBIs are faking their injuries, malingering or exaggerating. This is primarily because victims of traumatic brain injuries may appear outwardly as they did before the injury.
Another complexity of cases involving TBIs is how insurance companies and adjusters assess and value these injuries. While a TBI can profoundly impact every aspect of a person’s life, insurance companies are generally reluctant to recognize these injuries and will be resistant to fairly compensate the individual.
For all these reasons, individuals suffering from an accident-related traumatic brain injury need to ensure that their attorneys know how best to establish medical proof of the brain injury.
As our results demonstrate, we have the experience and expertise to pursue these unique cases to obtain full compensation for our clients. (Case Results). Our goal is to provide the best possible representation for you and your family. If you believe you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury due to the negligence of others, give us a call for a free evaluation.