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What Makes an Injury “Catastrophic?”

Posted on February 2, 2022 in Personal Injury


Many personal injury cases deal with only minor injuries or those from which individuals will eventually recover. However, other personal injury cases involve catastrophic injuries. These injuries are far more severe and often result in permanent impairments or disabilities that impact the everyday lives of accident victims.

Treatment for catastrophic injuries typically costs significantly more than for a minor injury and treatment may be ongoing. As a result, accident victims may be eligible for greater amounts of compensation when the negligence of others has led to accidents causing catastrophic injuries. When you are in this situation, getting the advice of experienced Phoenix catastrophic accident attorneys can be helpful to ensure that you receive full compensation for your injuries.

Examples of Catastrophic Injuries

Catastrophic injuries have a severe impact on your life and ability to perform regular tasks, such as walking and caring for yourself. These injuries often have permanent repercussions for your everyday activities. Some common types of catastrophic injuries may include:

  • Paralysis due to spinal cord or traumatic brain injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries resulting in cognitive deficits or coma
  • Loss of limbs or function of limbs or organs
  • Permanent scarring or disfigurement, such as from burn injuries

In most cases, a catastrophic injury makes you unable to work for some period, and perhaps indefinitely. You also are likely to suffer some permanent effects of a catastrophic injury, such as scarring, disability, or impairment that no amount of time or treatment will heal.

How Catastrophic Injuries Occur

Catastrophic injuries can occur in all types of accidents. Some of the most common accidents that lead to catastrophic injuries involve motor vehicles, including semi-truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, and bus accidents. However, other situations also can lead to catastrophic injuries, including:

  • Bicycle accidents
  • Accidents involving defective consumer products
  • Workplace accidents
  • Construction accidents
  • Swimming pool accidents

Damages in Catastrophic Injury Cases

If the negligence of others caused your accident, you may be eligible to seek compensation for your catastrophic injuries. The costs of treating a catastrophic injury are often much higher than treating a routine injury from which you will recover with some amount of medical treatment. In catastrophic injury cases, your medical treatment may be ongoing, perhaps for the remainder of your life.

You also may need other forms of care to help you with the activities of daily living due to your permanent impairments from your injuries. As a result, you might be entitled to damages such as:

  • In-home medical or personal care services
  • Medical assistive devices
  • Alterations to your home and vehicle to accommodate your disability
  • Rehabilitation and therapy services
  • Ongoing medical care and treatment

These damages are in addition to damages that are common to most personal injury cases. Damages may include lost wages and loss of future income, medical expenses, property damage, and pain and suffering.

Call the Legal Assistance You Deserve After a Catastrophic Accident

If another person has caused you to suffer a catastrophic injury, you may have a claim for compensation. The injury attorneys of Gallagher & Kennedy, P.A., can represent your interests and put you in the best possible position to achieve the maximum available compensation for the claim. Call our offices today at 602-530-8400 or reach out to us online and set up a time to talk to us about your case.