Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney in Anchorage, Alaska
Personal injuries can have devastating effects on both the victims and their families. In particular, traumatic brain injuries can have lifelong consequences affecting every aspect of a victim's life. According to the International Brain Injury Association, one million Americans receive treatment for traumatic brain injuries every year. These figures underscore the importance of receiving fair compensation when a loved one becomes incapacitated due to a traumatic brain injury.
At the Law Office of Jason Skala, LLC, we represent Alaskans from every area of our state - from Bethel, Kotzebue, and Barrow (Utqiagvik) to Unalaska, we represent you with professional legal counsel and a tenacious will to win.
Common Brain Injuries in Alaska
A common belief is that brain injuries result from impacts to the head. While it’s true that blows to the head can cause brain injuries, folks can also sustain brain injuries in other ways without direct contact with the head. Tragically, every year shaken baby syndrome is sadly a mechanism of brain injury where there isn't contact to the head, but simply repeated violent shaking back and forth of the child resulting in a whiplashing that causes brain injuries in infants. The same mechanism occurs in restrained passengers of motor vehicles, where the coup/countrecoup (whiplash of the head back and forth following impact) motion of being shaken by the impact of fast moving vehicles can cause brain injuries, just like the mechanism that produces shaken baby syndrome..
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
This injury is the most common type of brain injury, resulting from a blow or jolt to the head or penetrating head injury that disrupts the brain’s normal function. A concussion is a mild form of TBI.
Anoxic Brain Injury
This type of brain injury occurs when the brain is deprived of oxygen. It can happen for various reasons, including drowning, suffocation, or cardiac arrest.
Getting Properly Diagnosed for a Brain Injury
It is important to remember that the symptoms of a brain injury can be delayed or subtle, so if you experience any symptoms - loss of consciousness, anterior grade or retrograde amnesia, fogginess, headaches, altered consciousness following a head injury or other traumatic event, seek medical attention as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and treatment can improve outcomes and prevent long-term complications.
Please remember there are medical and legal reasons for diagnosing a brain injury.
Diagnosing a brain injury can help healthcare providers develop an appropriate treatment plan based on the severity of the injury and the specific symptoms and needs of the patient. Early diagnosis and treatment of a brain injury can improve outcomes and prevent long-term complications.
A brain injury diagnosis can help prevent further injury by identifying any limitations or impairments that may require modifications to daily activities or work tasks.
A brain injury diagnosis allows healthcare providers to monitor the patient’s progress and adjust treatment as needed. This diagnosis can help ensure the best possible outcome for the patient.
A diagnosis of a brain injury may be required to file an insurance claim for medical treatment and rehabilitation services.
If the brain injury was caused by the negligence or intentional actions of another party, a diagnosis of the injury can be used as evidence in legal proceedings to support a claim for damages.
A diagnosis of a brain injury may be necessary to qualify for disability benefits or other forms of financial assistance.
Also, traumatic brain injuries may show the following symptoms:
nausea or vomiting
ringing in the ears
sensitivity to light or sound
loss of coordination
difficulty with memory and concentration
feeling disoriented or “foggy”
loss of sense of smell or taste
difficulty falling or staying asleep
seizures or convulsions
Legal Challenges of a Traumatic Brain Injury Claim
TBI claims can present several legal challenges for both plaintiffs and defendants. The following are potential legal challenges in a TBI claim:
Proving causation. Proving liability or fault for a traumatic brain injury due to the defendant’s actions or negligence can be challenging as the burden of proof falls on the claimant.
Proving damages. Proving the extent of the damages caused by the TBI can be difficult since expert opinions are necessary to prove damages.
Disputes over diagnoses and treatment. Defendants may dispute the plaintiff’s diagnosis and treatment of the TBI, arguing that a pre-existing condition or unrelated event caused the symptoms or that the plaintiff’s treatment was not necessary or reasonable.
Statute of limitations. TBI claims are subject to a statute of limitations, limiting the time a plaintiff has to file a claim.
Comparative negligence. Defendants may argue that the plaintiff’s own actions contributed to the TBI, reducing their liability or damages.
Filing a Claim When a Loved One Is Incapacitated
Family members can file a personal injury claim when a loved one is incapacitated due to a traumatic brain injury. This claim seeks fair compensation when a third party is liable for the injury. The following steps can help family members get through the claims process:
Identify the legal representative, including a guardian, conservator, or power of attorney holder.
Collect the necessary documentation, including medical records, police reports, witness statements, and other relevant evidence.
Consult with an experienced attorney, which can help claimants understand their legal rights and options to navigate the claims process.
Filing the claim may involve submitting a claim to an insurance company, filing a lawsuit in court, or pursuing other legal options.
Advocate for loved ones throughout the claims process. It is important to ensure that their needs are met. This situation may involve coordinating with healthcare providers, managing finances, and protecting a loved one’s legal rights.
Possible Compensation for a Traumatic Brain Injury
Compensation for a traumatic brain injury (TBI) depends on the circumstances surrounding the injury and the severity of the injury, but receiving compensation is possible:
Victims may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, covering medical expenses, lost wages, and other related expenses.
Victims can file a personal injury lawsuit against the liable party to recover damages for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other related expenses.
Permanent disability can lead to eligibility for Social Security Disability benefits.
Service members may be eligible for veterans’ benefits, including compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and other related expenses.
Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney in Anchorage, Alaska
At the Law Office of Jason Skala, LLC, we work hard to protect our clients’ rights. Call today to protect your right to fair compensation. No matter your situation, we are here for you.