Burnett & Williams

When Should I Seek a Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney?

When Should I Seek a Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney?

A brain injury attorney can provide critical support for people who suffer a traumatic brain injury (TBI), which includes hundreds of thousands of Americans each year. Brain damage is often caused by a bump or blow to the head, violent movements or shaking, or penetrating injuries such as a gunshot wound. Falls are the top cause of TBI, followed by motor vehicle accidents.

According to the CDC, in 2021, there were over 69,000 TBI-related deaths in the United States. Survivors of traumatic brain injuries can experience lasting physical, cognitive, and emotional disabilities, forever changing their lives. For children, traumatic brain injuries can negatively impact their development, resulting in cognitive, behavioral, and social issues that reduce self-regulation and interfere with their education and social participation.

Three Types of Brain Injuries and When to Find a Lawyer

Traumatic brain injury is classified by the level of damage and length of time the person was unconscious. There are three main types of TBI.

  • Mild TBI or concussion is the lowest level of damage. A sudden movement that causes the brain to move around in the skull sometimes causes concussions. The person may not lose consciousness, but it was for 30 minutes or less if they do. Headache, sensitivity to light and noise, mood issues, difficulty thinking, and sleep issues are common symptoms. The term mild may be misleading. Mild TBI is a severe injury. Recovery can take weeks, impacting one’s ability to work and forcing them to restrict their activities even after recovery. In some cases, mild TBI can result in permanent injury. 
  • With both moderate and severe TBI, the damage to the brain is more extensive. With Moderate TBI, the injured person might have experienced unconsciousness lasting more than 30 minutes but less than 24 hours. With Severe TBI, the injured person might have been unconscious for more than 24 hours. The lasting cognitive effects include physical, sensory, motor, language, psychological, and behavioral impairments. Sometimes the person will experience seizures for the rest of their life. Some will never fully recover and may need ongoing support and treatment resulting in permanent disability.

TBI affects the lives of people of all ages. The developmental delays that some children experience may reduce their options as adults. 

People who have experienced one TBI are at risk for more severe and lasting damage if they experience another. People with TBI have a higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and other cognitive and memory impairments. 

If you or a loved one has had a traumatic brain injury in any kind of accident, it is important to get medical attention as soon as possible and follow all recommended treatment protocols. You should never underestimate the seriousness of a traumatic brain injury.

TBI is challenging from a medical and legal perspective as symptoms may not resolve as quickly as anticipated, and issues may manifest later. For a person with a traumatic brain injury, the lifetime medical costs can be as high as $4 million. Factor in the loss of income and their reduced lifetime earning potential, and you can see the devastating impact of TBI on the injured person and their family. The prognosis is not straightforward: some people recover from moderate TBI more fully than those with mild concussions. In some circumstances, it may be in your best interest to find a brain injury attorney, even with a diagnosis of mild TBI.

If another person is at fault for your injury, it is important to engage an experienced brain injury lawyer as early as possible. An experienced personal injury lawyer that has handled TBI cases will understand the devastating and lasting impact of brain trauma and will be able to make sure that your losses are not underestimated. 

Contact Us Today

If you have suffered a traumatic brain injury as a result of an accident, you may be entitled to compensation for the damages associated with your TBI. A personal injury lawyer specializing in traumatic brain injuries could make the difference in getting you the full settlement to which you and your family are entitled.

Burnett & Williams is one of Virginia’s oldest and most recognized personal injury law firms. We are experts in personal injury cases and have a proven track record. Contact us today for a free consultation.