Types of Catastrophic Accidents and Catastrophic Injuries

Garrison Law helps people throughout the state of Michigan, especially in Royal Oak, Detroit, and the surrounding areas, as Michigan catastrophic injury lawyers for more than 14 years. Some types of catastrophic injuries Garrison Law handles include:

  • Loss of hearing or sight;
  • Internal organ injuries;
  • Severe, disfiguring burns;
  • Loss of limb or amputation;
  • Birth injuries;
  • Spinal cord injuries;
  • Partial or total paralysis; and,
  • Concussions and traumatic brain injuries.

If you have suffered a catastrophic injury, contact our office today so we can help you with your claim.

Filing a Claim with an Insurance Company

In an effort to minimize their loss, insurance companies will often ignore a claim or delay making a settlement offer. What they won’t tell you is that the time you have to file your lawsuit is limited depending on the type of accident or cause of your injury. This is called the statute of limitations. 

It is important to know what time limitations apply to your claim when negotiating with an insurance company. As with any insurance claim, you should consult with a Michigan attorney and ask questions about how much time you have to bring a claim, so as not to lose your potential cause of action. 

Liability in Personal Injury Cases

In most situations, an injured party (also referred to as a claimant or plaintiff), must establish that another party (or defendant) was responsible, or liable, for those injuries.

Establishing Fault

A person or corporation may be negligent if they breach a standard of care, that is, if they act (or fail to act) in the way that reasonable people are expected to. If that action causes injury to another, then the defendant will be responsible for payment of monetary damages.

Sometimes liability may be based on a different standard, such as gross negligence, strict liability, or deliberate indifference. For more complex claims, an expert is typically required to testify about the standard of care or the cause of the injuries.

Proving Damages

Regardless of the standard used to prove fault, the injured party must show that they suffered injuries or loss as a result of the defendant’s actions. Some damages can be documented through medical bills, wage statements, and other invoices. These include things like:

  • Medical and hospital bills;
  • Rehabilitation costs;
  • Lost wages; and,
  • Property damage.

Other damages may require the help of an expert to prove, such as:

  • Lost earning capacity;
  • Future lost wages; and,
  • Future medical bills.

Additionally, an injured person may recover damages for intangible items such as:

  • Pain and suffering;
  • Emotional trauma;
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder;
  • Nightmares;
  • Memory loss;
  • Depression and anxiety; and,
  • Disability or disfigurement.

Anticipating Defenses

At each step, the defendant’s insurance company will try to lessen their responsibility to pay your damages. For instance, the insurance company may argue that you had a pre-existing condition or injury that they are not responsible for. Or they may claim that you exaggerated your injuries after the accident or incurred unnecessary medical costs. The defendant’s insurance carrier may also argue that you were partially at fault for causing the accident. Under Michigan law, if they can prove that you were 50% or more at fault, they can avoid paying damages altogether. Experienced personal injury attorneys know how to respond to these kinds of defenses.

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