Major accidents can result in severe, life-altering injuries to those involved. Known as catastrophic injuries, this type of harm can permanently impact a person’s quality of life and ability to make an income.
As such, it is important to work with an experienced local attorney who understands the long-term impact of such an injury. A Seattle catastrophic injury lawyer could help you accurately catalogue the personal and financial impact of your injuries to ensure you are fairly compensated for your harm.
What Qualifies as a Catastrophic Injury?
The State of Washington does not define catastrophic injury or set aside special legal considerations for these types of injuries. Instead, these highly damaging harms are considered part of the personal injury process, and typically result in higher damage amounts when properly proven.
While the cause of a catastrophic injury varies, they all result in substantial harm that hinders a person’s ability to perform daily tasks, often for a lengthy period of time. Injuries that are frequently considered to be catastrophic include:
These injuries result in serious financial and personal losses. A skilled attorney in Seattle could assist in calculating the long-term impact of a catastrophic injury.
Importance of Expert Witnesses
Most catastrophic injuries require long-term medical treatment, including surgeries, rehabilitation, and more. The costs of these medical treatments can be highly consequential to the life and financial health of the plaintiff. Recovering medical damages, among others, is an important part of a personal injury claim.
Medical evidence is uniquely complicated for a jury to understand in many cases. Expert testimony may be required for the jury to understand the necessity of the procedures, the costs, and the long-term health effects on the plaintiff.
Impact of Comparative Fault in Severe Injury Claims
For many severe cases that involve catastrophic harm, a defendant may seek to blame the plaintiff for all or part of their own injuries. This is a common defensive tactic, one that may hold no merit and be disproved. In other cases, the plaintiff may share some fault, but this does not prevent them from potentially recovering.
When a plaintiff is partially at fault, Revised Code of Washington § 4.22.005 applies to reduce the plaintiff’s damages by the percentage of their fault. The jury in a jury trial, or the court in a bench trial, will determine the amount of the plaintiff’s fault for their own injuries. This can range from zero percent to 100 percent fault. Only in cases where the plaintiff is found 100 percent at fault is recovery not permitted.
If the plaintiff is, for example, found to be 30 percent at fault for their own injuries, their damages will be reduced proportionately. Complicated determinations are required in these types of cases, so a dedicated Seattle attorney is highly recommended for handling catastrophic injury lawsuits.
Seek Counsel from a Seattle Catastrophic Injury Attorney Today
Proper advice and counseling about your rights can help you better understand your rights following an accident. Severe, permanent harm can drastically impact your quality of life and ability to earn a living. It is important that you hold the responsible party accountable.
For assistance with your claim, reach out to a Seattle catastrophic injury lawyer today. We look forward to speaking with you.