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YOU PAY NOTHING UNTIL WE WIN YOUR BRAIN INJURY CASE
In recent years, awareness of brain injuries and their potentially devastating impact has risen significantly due to news coverage of brain injuries sustained by NFL players and military service-related brain injuries. These are two very serious categories of people who suffer from brain injuries at disturbingly high rates, but it is not just athletes and service members that suffer from brain injuries.
Brain injuries can happen to anyone anywhere. As a San Diego resident, you could get into a car accident on the I-5. You could slip and hit your head at a restaurant in the Gaslamp Quarter. Your child could take a hard hit while playing sports, and the coach might violate concussion protocols and leave them in the game, resulting in a second hit.
The brain is the command center for our bodies, so the consequences are often significant when it is harmed. The cognitive, emotional, and physical impairments common to brain injuries routinely interfere with a victim’s ability to work, go to school, and go about everyday life. They also tend to saddle victims with large, unexpected financial burdens.
Suppose you or a loved one suffered a brain injury in San Diego. In that case, you may be able to recover significant financial compensation, and Gomez Trial Attorneys may be able to help. Contact us today for your free consultation with our brain injury legal team. Our attorneys have obtained multiple multi-million dollar settlements and jury awards for our brain injury clients.
Brain damage, or “brain injury,” is damage caused to the brain that leads to the destruction of brain cells. Put differently, it is a broad term that refers to any harm to the brain. Brain injuries range from minor to severe. They can impact the injured person from a few hours to a lifetime.
Brain injuries after birth can broadly be divided into two categories: traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and non-traumatic. TBI’s are brain injuries caused by an external force , such as knocking heads with someone during a football game. Non-traumatic brain injuries, by contrast, result from internal forces, like a stroke.
People often ask, “What are the five types of traumatic brain injuries?” But unfortunately, there is no generally accepted list of the five types of TBI’s. Instead, there are different grades and types of TBIs.
The following are the different grades (or severity levels) of traumatic brain injuries:
Here is a closer look at some common types of traumatic brain injuries.
A concussion is a common traumatic brain injury where the brain bounces against the skull and bleeds due to impact, sudden momentum, or movement change. This type of brain injury mimics lesser forms of diffuse axonal injuries in that the blood vessels in the brain may stretch and damage cranial nerves. A direct blow to the head, sports-related concussion, gunshot wound, violent shaking of the head, or force from a whiplash-like injury can all cause a concussion. Because it may take a few months to a few years for a concussion to heal, those who suffer a concussion must be unaware of the possibility of secondary injury.
A diffuse axonal injury occurs when the unmoving brain lags behind the movement of the skull, causing brain structures to stretch and tear. These often occur in car accidents or other high-impact events. Axonal injuries are a serious form of brain injury because the extensive tearing of nerve tissue disrupts the brain’s regular communication and chemical processes. This can lead to widespread brain damage, coma, and death. A diffuse axonal injury can also cause unaffected brain cells to die in a cascading chemical process from the impact site in the brain.
A coup-contrecoup injury results when the brain bounces back and forth in the skull. This bouncing causes bleeding at both the impact site and on the opposite side of the brain. In addition, it often occurs in victims who suffer severe whiplash.
Split into two sentences- “Second impact syndrome, also known as a secondary injury, occurs when a person suffers a second traumatic brain injury. This occurs when there is a second traumatic brain injury before the injuries from the first traumatic brain injury have healed. The second injury may occur days or weeks after the first and is more likely to cause brain swelling and widespread damage.
Penetrating head injuries occur when fragments of a bullet, a knife, or any other sharp object — along with hair, skin, and bone from the injury — are forced into the brain. This is an extremely serious injury that many, unfortunately, don’t survive.
A locked-in injury is a neurological condition where a person, cannot physically move any part of the body except the eyes due to a head injury. While the person is conscious and able to think, they are temporarily paralyzed due to the sudden impact on the brain.
Whether a person suffers a diffuse axonal injury or a mild concussion, any head injury can have serious and potentially lasting effects on one’s overall functioning. Therefore, those who suffer traumatic brain injuries should seek medical care as soon as possible, especially to reduce the possibility of a secondary injury.
At Gomez Trial Attorneys, our San Diego brain injury attorneys are equipped with the know-how and experience to tackle any case in which our client has suffered a TBI. Here are cases our San Diego brain injury lawyers frequently handle.
Motor vehicle accidents are among the most common causes of traumatic brain injury in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Our team frequently represents clients who have suffered traumatic brain injuries as drivers and passengers of cars, trucks, buses, and motorcycles on San Diego’s freeways and streets.
San Diego’s great weather means many pedestrians and cyclists are out and about year-round. Unfortunately, this means more accidents tend to occur. Pedestrian accidents and bicycle accidents often involve brain injuries. Many of these accidents involve being hit by a motor vehicle. The sheer force of impact is enough to cause a concussion or diffuse axonal injury. Whether a vehicle is involved or not, pedestrian and bike accidents often result in striking the ground. And brain injury is possible when someone’s head strikes the ground (even with a helmet).
Falling and sustaining a blow to the head constitutes another exceedingly common way that San Diegans can suffer brain injuries. Even a seemingly minor slip and fall can result in severe brain trauma that affects a victim’s speech, memory, sleep, and emotional state. Our team holds San Diego property owners and tenants accountable when dangerous conditions on their premises lead to a fall and a brain injury.
Assaults, gun crimes, and similar acts of violence, including domestic violence, also account for a large number of brain injuries every year, according to the CDC. Victims of those crimes often do not realize that they may have the right to sue the perpetrator or others (such as property owners) for their injuries. At Gomez Trial Attorneys, we research the facts of those crimes to determine who can be held financially accountable.
Accidental gunshot wounds also contribute to the annual toll of brain injuries in San Diego. Our team understands California gun laws and how they may play a role in holding parties legally liable for the devastating harm caused by the accidental discharge of a firearm.
From pee-wee leagues to the pros, the risk of traumatic brain injury in sports is real and pervasive. Evidence continues to grow that so-called “minor” concussions suffered in contact and high-impact sports can cause serious and lasting impairments for athletes. Multiple sports-related concussions have also been tied to the development of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disease.
The Gomez Trial Attorneys team can represent clients who suffered sports-related brain injuries at any level of competition. We hold leagues, coaches, and others accountable for failing to follow brain injury prevention protocols and for putting athletes in harm’s way.
Some of the most severe brain injuries occur in preventable work-related incidents. Construction workers, for example, face heightened brain injury risk from falls and falling objects. But even a fall in a San Diego office building can lead to brain trauma.
Preventable brain injuries also present an ongoing challenge for San Diego’s military community. Service members accept some risks in their jobs, but that does not mean that the military has the right to expose them to unnecessary brain injury risks in training or on deployment. Gomez Trial Attorneys understands the challenges active-duty service members and veterans face from service-related brain trauma and knows how to fight to get them the compensation they need and deserve.
Not all brain injuries are legally compensable. For you to have grounds to bring a brain injury-related San Diego personal injury lawsuit, two important criteria must be met: (1) you must have suffered damages as a result; and (2) the cause of the brain injury must have been caused by someone else, another person or business.
You do not need to figure this out on your own. If you suffered a brain injury in San Diego and suspect that someone may have been the cause, contact Gomez Trial Attorneys to set up a free case evaluation. We have worked with many clients who came to us because they suspected that someone else may have been responsible for their injuries even though they did not know who or the exact legal theories to use.
Below are answers to some of the most commonly asked questions that injured persons first ask their San Diego brain injury lawyer about bringing a personal injury claim. Every case is unique and if you have additional questions or want a free case evaluation regarding your San Diego brain injury, contact Gomez Trial Attorneys at (619) 237-3490 or here to schedule your free consultation with a San Diego brain injury attorney.
If someone else was at fault for your brain injury, you may be able to recover damages. Damages compensate you for the physical and financial injuries you have suffered as a result.
The types of damages that can be recovered vary because every San Diego brain injury case is unique. Still, in general, our San Diego brain injury attorneys often get brain injury victims compensation for:
In particularly egregious cases, we may also be able to recover punitive damages (also called exemplary damages) on your behalf. Punitive damages are designed to punish the wrongdoer and may be awarded where the party at fault for our client’s brain injury engaged in willful, fraudulent, or malicious conduct.
When you bring a personal injury lawsuit for a traumatic brain injury, you have the burden of proving that you suffered the injury. This will typically involve different forms of evidence that cumulatively show that you suffered a TMI as a result of the accident or incident at issue.
One primary source of proof that a traumatic brain injury occurred is through medical evidence such as treating and expert medical provider testimony, medical records, and medical imaging and test results. Additionally, your own testimony is often important to prove the impact of the TBI on you as well as how the causal accident or incident unfolded. In some cases, visual aids such as electronic re-enactments are needed to show how the accident or incident caused the TBI.
Proving a TBI can be complex, but you don’t have to do it on your own. Experienced San Diego brain injury lawyers, like the ones at Gomez Trial Attorneys, know how to gather and present proof of a traumatic brain injury in a manner that will maximize the likelihood of a settlement or verdict in your favor.
There are two ways you can recover compensation for a brain injury: settlement and trial. A settlement is when you reach a deal with the other parties before doing to trial. Many cases can be settled, but not all of them, and sometimes a brain injury case proceeds to trial where a jury determines if the other parties are liable and the amount of compensation.
Since settlements occur out of court and are often kept confidential, there is no reliable source of statistics on how much brain injury cases settle for. In California, the median trial verdict for a brain injury case is $1,595,000.
How much you can obtain for your brain injury depends on the facts of your case, and utilizing an experienced, reputable San Diego brain injury lawyer will help ensure that you obtain the maximum amount possible.
At Gomez Trial Attorneys, our core mission is to secure the maximum compensation available for our clients under California and federal law. Typically, that means pursuing insurance claims or lawsuits in San Diego County court or federal court against the party or parties whose wrongful actions harmed our client.
The following are some of the case results that our San Diego brain injury lawyers have obtained on behalf of our brain injury clients:
Yes, if someone was at fault, you bring a personal injury lawsuit and can seek damages for post-concussion syndrome.
Post-concussion syndrome refers to an array of symptoms that many people experience after a concussion. Syndromes include dizziness, headaches, difficulty concentrating, memory issues, light sensitivity, emotional disturbances, and fatigue, and can last from a few days to a year or more.
These symptoms are challenging to deal with. You may be unable to participate in professional and personal activities that you once could. You may be unable to enjoy your favorite past-times because of your headache. Your relationships may be strained. And, the worse part is you don’t know when it will end. In fact, a common Google search question is, “When will post-concussion syndrome go away?” If someone else caused the injury that led to your post-concussion syndrome, you should be compensated for the harm.
As noted above, there are no reliable statistics regarding brain injury settlements, this includes concussion-related brain injuries. Estimates place the average value of concussion settlements between $20,000 and $500,000+. Mild concussions with no long-lasting injuries are going to be on the very low end of the spectrum.
Suffering a brain injury throws your life into chaos, making it difficult to know what decisions to make to protect your legal rights, finances, and wellbeing.
Every situation is different, of course, but the tips below may help put you on the path to getting the compensation you need and deserve to pay for your injury and rebuild your life.
The single most important thing you can do to protect yourself after any harmful accident or incident is to seek appropriate medical care right away, and then do as your doctor tells you.
This is important for several reasons. First, it protects your health. Sometimes, especially with brain injuries, the person injured may not realize the nature or extent of the injury until a doctor spots it. Children and the elderly, in particular, may have a difficult time explaining brain injury symptoms to their caregivers. To prevent an injury from worsening, always get a medical exam after any accident or incident involving a blow to the head, or deprivation of oxygen or blood flow to the brain.
Getting care also protects you legally, because it generates medical records that serve as evidence of the nature and extent of your brain injury. Those records may end up becoming crucial in your lawyer’s efforts to get you compensated for your injury.
Finally, getting care serves as a preventative measure against at-fault parties (and their insurance companies) trying to blame you for the harm you suffered. If you go to the doctor and follow your treatment plan, no one can claim you didn’t do what you should have to keep yourself as healthy as possible.
As a victim of a brain injury caused by someone else’s wrongful conduct, you may recover significant financial compensation. The parties at-fault for your injuries, and their insurers and lawyers, know this. And sometimes, they’ll try to minimize their financial exposure for your injury by reaching out to you directly and either (i) trying to get you to say something that lets them off the hook, or (ii) trying to get you to accept a financial settlement for far less money than you deserve.
Do not fall for either of these tactics. If possible, do not agree to speak with anyone else’s insurance company or defense lawyer directly, even if they use high-pressure tactics. Instead, refer all communications from them to your lawyer (see below) who knows the law and can protect you against pitfalls that could jeopardize your rights.
A traumatic brain injury lawyer’s job is to advocate for you. In the days and weeks after a brain injury, you need someone like that on your side, protecting you from aggressive insurance investigators, defense lawyers, and others who may seek to take advantage of your vulnerable condition.
Calling a lawyer right away also serves to put you in the best possible position to build a case against the party (or parties) whose actions harmed you. Evidence especially evidence of someone else’s wrongdoing has a way of disappearing if someone acting on your behalf does not secure it as quickly as possible. Similarly, witnesses who saw what happened to you tend to forget important details over time. The sooner a lawyer representing you can interview them, the better.
Another reason to call a lawyer immediately is to make sure you meet important deadlines for enforcing your rights. In California, you typically have two years to file a lawsuit for damages when someone’s intentional or negligent actions harm you. But you may need to act far sooner in some cases, and even that two-year window of time closes faster than you might imagine. Do not risk missing a deadline that could cost you your valuable rights.
Brain injury cases are some of the most complex and difficult cases to negotiate and litigate. At Gomez Trial Attorneys, we understand how to successfully win complex legal cases in San Diego and throughout the state. We know that no two brain injury cases are ever quite the same.
That’s why our San Diego brain injury lawyers work with medical teams and experts to fully understand how your injuries will affect your future specifically. We then build your case strategically to ensure that you have the money you need to handle whatever the future holds. There is a reason why so many injured accident victims turn to Gomez Trial Attorneys in their darkest hours. We have an impressive track record of success in helping individuals with brain injuries.
Please seek medical care immediately and call our personal injury law firm. Our goal is to efficiently recover the compensation needed for your past and future medical costs and noneconomic losses, and improve the quality of your life. Our San Diego brain injury attorneys and staff are committed to making sure that you and your family are taken care of in every way possible. We will help guide you through the complex legal process.
We have offices all over California, including one in San Diego that is conveniently located at 655 West Broadway, Suite 1700. Our office is just a couple of blocks away from Waterfront Park and the Fish Market in San Diego. You can take the I-5 or take the Sycuan Green Line trolley to the Santa Fe Depot station. We can meet with you in person, over the internet, or even in your hospital room for your convenience. We even offer FREE initial consultations so that we can get to know you and your situation better.
You deserve to explore all your legal options. If you suffered a brain injury as a result of someone else’s wrongful conduct, please give us a call at (619) 237-3490.
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“I know firsthand that Gomez Trial Attorneys is a professional and compassionate law firm. The entire office is a family and they treat their clients like family as well – these people truly care. Not only that, but they strive to make a positive difference in the community through their outreach efforts. Highly recommend.”
Review by: Joshua S.
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