Compensation for Traumatic Brain Injuries
A motorcycle accident is more likely to result in serious injuries than one involving two passenger vehicles. You have a 6% chance of being involved in an accident whenever you ride your motorcycle as compared to 1% if in a passenger car. If you are struck by another vehicle, hit a fixed object on the road or are ejected from your bike for any other reason, the chances of your being injured are as high as 98%.
You are entitled to compensation for any injury caused by the negligence or wrongful conduct of another party, but the amount is determined by the nature and extent of your injuries and the funds available from the culpable party.
One tragic consequence of a motorcycle accident is traumatic brain injury (TBI). You can minimize the chances of getting TBI by wearing a full-faced helmet, but it is no guarantee against brain trauma.
Symptoms of TBI can be mild, moderate or severe. Mild symptoms may include:
- Blurred vision
- Ringing in the ears
- Change in sleep patterns
- Mood changes
- Trouble focusing
Persons with moderate or severe TBI may also experience worsening headaches, repeated vomiting, seizures, slurred speech, loss of coordination, weakness in the extremities and cognitive changes.
Compensation for a TBI is determined largely on first proving fault by the other party and showing that you were not comparatively liable. This is followed by demonstrating the cost of your medical expenses and the nature and extent of your injury. For a TBI where there is expert medical testimony that you suffered brain trauma, that some of your symptoms are more than likely to be permanent and that you are unable to engage in some or many of the activities you did before your accident will determine how much compensation you may receive.
Medical testimony about your prognosis is vital to your receiving the most compensation available. Disabilities from a TBI depend on the location of the injury, severity and your age and health. Cognitive problems associated with TBI are:
- Problems with thinking, memory and reasoning
- Sensory processing–touch, smell, hearing and sight
- Communication and comprehension
- Mental health–depression, aggression, and inappropriate behavior
- Periods of alertness followed by unresponsiveness
- Persistent vegetative state
In a negligence claim, you can recover economic, or special damages, and non-economic or general damages. Non-economic damages are usually the highest portion of any award or verdict since it is subjective and an insurer, or jury, must evaluate the pain and suffering, emotional trauma and diminished quality of your life, which can be substantial in TBI claims
Most injuries are compensated through the responsible party’s liability insurance limits. If you have underinsured coverage that is higher than the other party’s limits, you can recover the difference from your own policy. If the party is a commercial carrier, corporation or a government entity, you have more resources to obtain funds in most cases.