A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is one of the worst injuries a person can suffer during an accident. The effects of a TBI have the potential to remain with victims for the rest of their lives, costing them their independence, capacity to earn a living, and ability to enjoy life the way they once did.
Any number of events can result in a TBI, including car accidents, slip and falls, being struck by heavy equipment, recreational activities, and more. If an accident is caused by someone else’s carelessness, Hawaii law states that brain injury victims can pursue compensation for their losses.
Are you living with a TBI in Honolulu? To give you the best possible chance of recovering maximum compensation for your injury, you need a compassionate traumatic brain injury lawyer on your side.
Reach out to TBI lawyer Glenn Honda at Recovery Law Center today. Our Oahu legal team understands how a brain injury can impact every facet of a survivor’s life. Our mission is to secure the money you need to live a full life free from worry about how to make ends meet.
It costs nothing to learn your legal options. Call or contact us online today to schedule a free consultation.
What Types of Accidents Can Cause a TBI?
Any number of accidents can result in a TBI. The most common include:
- Car accidents: During a car crash, a person may hit their head against the steering wheel or dashboard, resulting in a TBI. Traumatic brain injuries are also sometimes penetration injuries and occur when broken glass or other objects pierce the skull and brain on impact.
- Moped accidents: Moped operators have very little protection in a collision. Their heads may strike the ground, parts of the moped, or even the other vehicle during a crash.
- Motorcycle accidents: Motorcycle helmets are not required for all bikers in Hawaii. But even when a person is wearing one while on a motorcycle, it is not often enough to prevent a life-altering or fatal TBI if an accident occurs.
- Bicycle accidents: Hawaii also does not require all bicyclists to wear a helmet. But helmet or not, people involved in a serious bicycle accident are at risk of severe brain damage and other injuries.
- Pedestrian accidents: Pedestrians have no protection if they’re struck by a moving vehicle. A jolt to the head, even if it never strikes the pavement or another object, can be enough to cause catastrophic harm to the brain.
- Premises liability accidents: Falls are a leading cause of TBIs in the United States. When a person suffers a TBI after a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, they may be able to file a traumatic brain injury claim in Hawaii.
- Product liability accidents: Faulty products, such as automobiles, power tools, construction equipment, can malfunction and leave innocent consumers with debilitating TBIs.
Types of Brain Injuries
Brain injuries and others are classified into two main types: closed brain injuries and penetrating brain injuries.
Closed brain injuries occur when the brain is injured but no foreign object, like a bullet, pierces the skull or brain. Closed brain injuries are often a result of the brain shaking vigorously inside the skull. Closed head injuries can be further categorized as concussions, contusions, contrecoup injuries, and diffuse axonal (or shearing) injuries.
A penetrating brain injury occurs when an object enters the skull and damages the brain tissue. Penetration brain injuries can result in brain bleeds and other injuries that are extremely serious.
No matter if the TBI is a closed injury or penetrating wound, both have the potential to cause death. In those cases, family members can consider filing a wrongful death claim for compensation from the negligent party.
Traumatic Brain Injury Complications
Many complications may accompany a traumatic brain injury. Some of these are a result of the injury itself, while others are indirect complications, caused by spending many days or weeks in bed.
Examples of TBI complications include:
Increased intracranial pressure (ICP): After the brain is injured, it swells in an effort to protect itself. However, it can only swell so much before pressing against the skull. When the pressure inside the brain increases to dangerous levels, it can cause further damage or result in death. Medication or surgery can sometimes reduce or prevent the pressure from building up too high.
- Edema: This condition occurs when there is more fluid than normal inside the brain. Due to the fact that the brain is encased within the skull, there is no room for the tissues to expand, which also increases the ICP and can cause further damage to brain cells while limiting blood flow.
- Hydrocephalus: More commonly known as “water on the brain,” this complication occurs when cerebrospinal fluid collects in the ventricles. This may not happen immediately, but often occurs within the first year after suffering a TBI.
- Fever: Certain parts of the brain regulate the body’s temperature. When these areas of the brain are injured, a person may develop a high fever. This is most likely to occur during the first hours and days after the initial injury.
- Infections: Infections are most likely to occur after a penetrating brain injury. Infections may occur around or below the dura, in the membranes of the brain, or within the brain itself.
- Pneumonia: When a person is confined to bed after a brain injury, they are at a higher risk of developing pneumonia.
- Blood clots: Accident victims are also more likely to develop blood clots when they are bedridden and restricted to limited movements. A blood clot can travel to the lungs, a condition known as a pulmonary embolism, which is life-threatening.
Working with a traumatic brain injury lawyer can help ensure that your financial award will account for all of your current medical costs as well as anticipated future losses caused by the accident.
Should I Settle with the Insurance Company After a Head Injury?
In most accident cases, you will seek compensation from the insurance company that provides coverage for the at-fault party. You should expect them to come calling soon after the accident to offer you a settlement. Don’t jump to settle. That’s what they want you to do.
While it can be tempting to accept a settlement and have it done with, you need to know that insurance companies always make a lowball offer first. They are savvy and understand that you are under stress. They take advantage of that distress to encourage you into accepting far less than what you deserve. For this reason, it’s vital that you speak with a Honolulu traumatic brain injury lawyer before making any deals.
Why Should I Hire a Brain Injury Lawyer?
Depending on the severity of the TBI and the victim’s age, the lifetime costs of living with a brain injury can reach into the millions. Getting an insurer to agree to a million-dollar payout is no easy task, so working with a TBI lawyer makes the most sense to protect your right to maximum compensation.
An attorney can:
- Conduct an investigation: Before you can file a TBI claim, you’ll need to determine who is responsible for the injury. Determining liability is not always obvious, and an attorney can conduct an investigation to ensure that all liable parties are held accountable.
- An understanding of the law: Many laws govern injury claims in Hawaii. People that do not deal with the law every day won’t know all of the procedural rules that must be followed. A lawyer will know the laws and comply with them so your claim is protected at all times.
- An accurate valuation of your claim: Accident victims are not always aware of the full damages they are eligible for. A lawyer will advise on the medical costs, lost income, and other losses that might be included in your claim, such as pain and suffering.
- Negotiation skills: Having good negotiation skills is key to getting a full and fair settlement. Lawyers are trained negotiators, and they can recognize when an insurance company is trying to shortchange you.
- Trial experience: Insurance companies and negligent parties sometimes refuse to pay accident victims the fair settlement they deserve. When this is the case, a lawyer will have the experience necessary to take your case to trial.
Compensation for TBI
The compensation available in traumatic brain injury claims will depend on the facts of the case. Some of the most common types of damages include:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Property damage
- Loss of consortium
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Permanent disability and disfigurement
After reviewing the facts of your case, a lawyer can place an appropriate value on your claim and argue aggressively for the maximum amount you are entitled to.
An Experienced Honolulu Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer Can Help You Today
If you or a loved one has suffered a TBI due to the negligence of someone else, call a traumatic brain injury lawyer in Honolulu today. At Recovery Law Center, Attorney Glenn Honda has more than a quarter-century of experience helping injured people secure the compensation they need after catastrophic accidents. He can help you, too.
Our law firm provides comprehensive service to clients, always working towards compensation for you but never sacrificing personal relationships or our focus on your overall wellbeing. There’s nothing to lose and everything to gain by contacting us for a free consultation.
Call or fill out our online contact form now to get started.