Even in a seemingly minor car accident, victims can suffer several types of serious injuries, including broken bones, spinal cord damage, and brain trauma. According to the Centers for Diseases and Control Prevention (CDC), brain injuries are among the leading causes of disability and death in the United States. About 20 percent of brain injuries occur as a result of automobile accidents. The force of impact can cause a driver or passenger to hit his or her head on the dashboard or be thrown from the vehicle. If you or a loved one have sustained a brain injury as a result of another driver’s negligence, you should speak with an experienced personal injury attorney to learn about how you can recover damages.
Types of Concussions
Although concussions are considered a mild brain injury, they are one of the most common injuries suffered in a car collision. Concussions are categorized according to their severity:
- Grade 1 concussions produce no loss of consciousness, but the victim may experience temporary amnesia (30 minutes or less).
- Grade 2 concussions produce loss of consciousness with amnesia that lasts less than 24 hours.
- Grade 3 concussions produce loss of consciousness with amnesia that lasts longer than 24 hours.
Depending on the severity of the victim’s concussion, she or he may not even realize that a form of brain trauma has occurred. Although dizziness and headaches may be prevalent in this type of injury, additional symptoms such as changes in mood or sleep patterns could go unnoticed. Concussions can also be a sign of a traumatic brain injury (TBI), which is a more serious condition.
Filing a Lawsuit for a Brain Injury
Concussions and other brain injuries are very serious, even if the victim does not (at first) realize the severity of the injury. Head trauma can require immediate as well as ongoing medical treatment. In addition to medical expenses, brain injuries may contribute to other types of damages, including loss of earning capacity, rehabilitation, pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and a loss of companionship for the victim’s spouse. In Wisconsin, individuals who sustain brain injuries caused by a car collision where another individual is at fault have the right to seek compensation for those damages.
That being said, proving the negligence of the other driver is the first hurdle in a brain injury lawsuit. A driver’s careless actions may stem from distractions such as texting, or the driver may have been under the influence of drugs or alcohol. To help build evidence for a brain injury case, a victim should take photographs of the accident, secure eye-witness testimonies, and document all pertinent symptoms and medical treatments. It is important for victims to seek proper medical care and follow a physician’s instructions. Doing so will reduce the chance of the victim’s own actions (e.g., not taking care of the initial injury) worsening the brain injury.
Contact a Green Bay Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer
A brain injury can impact your life in many ways. If you or a loved one have sustained head trauma after a motor vehicle collision, speak to the skilled attorneys at Herrling Clark Law Firm, Ltd. to learn about your best options for receiving compensation. To schedule a free consultation, contact our dedicated Appleton, WI personal injury attorneys at 920-739-7366.