Are Brain Injuries Common after Car Accidents?
March 1, 2022 | Brain Injuries
Brain injuries happen when you suffer head trauma or a sudden jolt, which car accidents commonly cause. Serious brain injuries often have catastrophic effects and can be life-altering. If another driver’s negligence leaves you with a brain injury, seeking the professional legal guidance you need from an experienced car accident attorney is always in your best interest.
Do Brain Injuries Commonly Result from Car Accidents?
Yes, brain injuries are common car accident injuries, including concussions, severe traumatic brain injury (TBI), and other forms. Car accidents are responsible for a full 14 percent of all TBI cases in the country, making them one of the primary causes for the general population-and the leading cause for young adults and children.
Every 23 seconds, someone suffers a brain injury in the United States, many of which happen in crashes. Further, about 50,000 people die each year from these traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). A TBI is an injury that interferes with how the brain works and is a major cause of death and disability in the United States.
Consider these sobering statistics:
In one recent year, about 166 persons lost their lives to TBIs every day in the United States-60,611 throughout the year.
More than 233,000 people need hospitalization for TBIs in this country each year.
TBIs commonly result from a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, which often happens in traffic collisions.
Losses From a TBI
TBIs are so unpredictable that even a relatively minor TBI can wreak considerable damage. Further, TBIs can be slow to present with obvious symptoms, which means that if you are involved in a car accident of any significance, it is always in your best interest to seek medical attention.
An early diagnosis goes hand in hand with an improved prognosis, which makes erring on the side of caution to your advantage. The losses stemming from TBIs tend to be considerable.
The medical costs from a brain injury can be high, and if your injury is more serious or leads to challenging complications, they can be far more so.
Consider all the following treatment costs:
Emergency treatment and transportation
- Hospitalization and medical supplies
- Surgical care and follow-up care
- Medical procedures, treatments, and tests
- Prescription medications
- Physical therapy and occupational therapy
- Chiropractic care
- Pain management
- Care from doctors, medical specialists, and other medical professionals
- Home health care
Lost Earnings on the Job
The recovery period after a brain injury can be lengthy, and you can expect to be off the job for a considerable stretch – that is, if you can return to work in your former capacity. If your injury precludes you from doing your job or advancing your career, the financial losses can be devastating. If your injury disrupts your career path and earning potential, it can also take a hefty emotional toll due to the significance our careers often carry in our lives.
Physical and Emotional Pain and Suffering
Brain injuries can bring overwhelming physical and emotional pain and suffering. A TBI can alter your thinking and personality, a loss you cannot overstate.
The psychological consequences of a TBI can include:
A noticeable shift in personality
- Difficulty concentrating
- Severe mood swings
- A tendency to self-isolate and to push others away
- Increased anxiety that can include panic attacks
- Bouts of depression that can be ongoing
- Crying jags and other signs of emotional lability
- Fear of getting back behind the wheel of your car
- Terrifying accident flashbacks
- Sleep disturbances that can include night terrors
- Feelings of being disconnected
These emotional consequences add to the tragic nature of TBIs.
Ensuring that your car accident claim effectively addresses each category of loss you experience is essential to obtaining the compensation to pay for your maximum recovery.
The Insurance Company
Your car accident attorney will seek compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance provider. Although the insurance company should fairly cover the losses you experience due to its policyholder’s negligence, the insurer is in business to make money. This means that it will do what it can to minimize your settlement, and adjusters have many tactics to do so.
#1. Early Settlement Offer
You’re facing considerable financial setbacks, and an early settlement offer from the insurance company may feel like the answer you’ve been desperately awaiting. However, an early offer like this is very likely a ploy to settle your claim before you’re fully aware of your sustained losses.
With a TBI, the difference between the settlement offer and the losses you actually suffered can be vast. It is always in your best interest to consult with a knowledgeable car accident attorney before accepting a settlement offer because once you sign, there is no going back.
#2. Claim Denial
The insurance company may deny your claim right from the start not because it isn’t valid but because the insurance company is hoping you’ll be too financially desperate to fight back. The insurance company does not have the final say on whether your claim is valid the law does and if your car accident attorney believes in your claim, so should you.
#3. A Prolonged Claims Process
Car accident claims are complicated and lengthy enough, and if the insurance company decides to make it more so, it can cause you to lose hope. This result is what the insurance company is going for, but you shouldn’t let your discouragement get the better of you.
The insurance company faces considerable legal constraints related to artificially extending or complicating the claims process, and your attorney will hold the insurance company to its legal responsibilities. The insurance company does not want to face a bad faith denial claim.
#4. Minimizing Your Damages
Another common tactic that insurance companies often adopt is questioning the extent of the damages claimants pursue. Adjusters might claim that your injuries are not as serious as you state or you did not need all the treatment you received. They might question whether you still need to be home from work or if your pain and suffering are as severe as you claim. All of this aims to reduce your compensation.
Your car accident attorney can gather the evidence and documentation necessary to prove your full range of damages, and you can help yourself by:
- Following your doctor’s orders and instructions carefully (demonstrating that you take your injuries seriously)
- Taking a vacation from social media (the insurance company is adept at twisting posts and photos to mean something that they do not, and it’s best simply to take a pass)
- Telling the adjuster that all communications will go through your attorney
Proving the severity of your injuries to someone who doubts you is challenging. You need the right attorney on your side who can prove this for you.
Make the Call to an Experienced Car Accident Attorney for the Help You Need Today
If you or someone you love has suffered a brain injury because of another driver’s negligence, you want a car accident law firm with experience handling TBI claims. This is a complex injury that leads to complicated legal matters, so get the right legal representation to help you.