Losing a limb in an accident is a life change that most people will never understand. Especially if you received your injury in a catastrophic accident like a car accident or a construction machinery accident, you could be frustrated at the unfairness. If someone else’s negligence was responsible for your injury, you might be entitled to just compensation.
The Philadelphia personal injury attorneys at The Reiff Law Firm have helped hundreds of injured people get compensation for their injuries. When someone else is responsible for your harm, you might be entitled to financial compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. For a free consultation with our attorneys, call (215) 246-9000 today.
Proving Amputation Injuries
The first part of proving your case and getting compensation is the medical treatment. With something as severe as the loss of a limb, it is likely that you received emergency medical attention. The ongoing medical care, therapy, and rehabilitation may be expensive, but the treatment is necessary to recover as much compensation as you can. During this process, doctors will be able to document your specific injuries, abilities, and recovery potential. The missing limb itself is obvious proof of your condition, but your own thoughts and feelings are also important evidence. It is an excellent idea to document how the injury affects you, in your own words.
These facts will be important later, as proof of what harms you suffered. The harms that you face are called “damages,” and are one of the four cornerstones of proving an injury case. Most cases are based on “negligence” – someone else’s failure to use the proper level of care, which resulted in your injury. The four elements necessary to prove any negligence case are as follows:
- Someone else owed you a duty;
- That person breached that duty;
- The breach caused your injury;
- You can prove your injuries in court, and the extent to which they affect your life (damages).
The duty and breach elements usually come from the specific situation in which you were injured. For example, if you were harmed in a car accident, then the other driver may have breached their duty to drive with the same care an ordinary, reasonable person would use. In most situations, this “reasonable person” standard is how you prove someone else was negligent. If you were harmed by a piece of machinery that someone handled carelessly, that would likely fall below this reasonableness standard.
In any case, proving the duty is often based on the relationship between you and the person who caused your injury. Personal injury lawyers understand these duties and relationships, and it is highly recommended that you consult a lawyer about your amputation case.
Damages for a Bodily Injury Claim
Losing a limb is a horrific injury. Not only is the pain enormous, but the change in your lifestyle, routine, and ability to care for yourself may be devastating. Depending on the amputation location and number of injuries, you may need skilled nursing care for the rest of your life. Note that if you suffered amputation in a work-related accident, you might have other paths to recovery as well.
Getting on with the rest of your life may take a long time. During this period, you may need to pay medical bills for surgeries, rehabilitation, physical therapy, occupational therapy, prosthetics, and wheelchairs. These expensive medical bills should be part of the damages that you are awarded in a personal injury lawsuit. This compensation should extend to all forms of medical care, including nursing, imaging, transportation, therapy, and actual medical procedures.
If you are no longer able to work because of your injury, you might be entitled to recover your lost wages. If the injury keeps you out of work while you recover, but you are able to return, you might be entitled to compensation for all of the wages you missed during this period. If you are no longer able to work, you might be entitled not only to the wages you missed, but all of the wages you will miss for the rest of your life. If you cannot work to support yourself because of an injury someone else caused, they should be made to pay replacement wages.
“Pain and suffering” is the final common category of damages in a personal injury suit. This includes both the intense physical pain of losing a limb as well as the mental suffering. This kind of injury can award very high damages in most cases. Fortunately, Pennsylvania has no caps on pain and suffering damages, meaning a jury can award you as much money as they see fit.
Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyers
The personal injury attorneys at The Reiff Law Firm may be able to help you get compensation for your lost limb. If you or a loved one has suffered an amputation injury, contact an attorney today. Because your case might have important deadlines, it is vital to act now. Call (215) 246-9000 today for a free consultation.