What Is a Catastrophic Injury?

When you think of catastrophic injuries, brain and spinal cord injuries likely come to mind. While these are some types of catastrophic injuries, the concept goes deeper.

According to 42 USC § 3796b, “‘catastrophic injury’ means consequences of an injury that permanently prevent an individual from performing any gainful work.”

Said simply, a catastrophic injury is one that forever hinders your ability to conduct meaningful work for an income.

Types of Catastrophic Injuries

Some of the most commonly sustained catastrophic injuries include:

  • Spinal cord injuries, particularly those involving partial or complete paralysis
  • Significant spine injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and other significant head injuries
  • Injuries resulting in the loss of a limb
  • Significant burn injuries
  • Injuries resulting in disfigurement and severe scarring
  • Injuries that:
    • Cause a long-term or lifelong disability.
    • Considerably disturb your life, particularly to earn an income.
    • Require intensive medical care or long-term treatment.

Common Causes of Catastrophic Injuries

While you can endure a catastrophic injury as a result of any kind of accident or traumatic event, there are certain activities that tend to produce these types of injuries more often than others. The following are some of the most common reasons why people endure catastrophic injuries:

A Life Care Plan Must Be Created By a Professional

If you sustain a catastrophic injury, it is critical that a life care plan is created on your behalf. This plan is produced in order to address your current and future needs as you adapt to living with your injury.

The plan is personalized and should explain the services, support, equipment, and ancillary needs you have to comfortably live with your condition. It typically includes outcomes, dates, and timelines.

Some of the elements included in your life care plan can include:

  • Functional modifications to your home, including:
    • Tub
    • Toilet
    • Ingress and egress
  • Transportation, like an adaptive vehicle
  • Assistive technology and adaptive equipment, such as a wheelchair
  • Case management
  • Everyday care and nursing
  • Pharmaceutical drugs, medical supplies, and medical equipment
  • Care and services in a facility
  • In-home care and services

Additionally, the following medical information should be included in your life care plan:

  • Required surgeries and treatment
  • Diagnostic testing
  • Therapeutic services
  • Counseling
  • Support in handling the complications of the condition
  • Educational services
  • Vocational services

If another’s negligence caused you to sustain a catastrophic injury, having an effective life care plan can help you recover the maximum amount of compensation you deserve for your catastrophic injury.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that it’s best to have a professional draft up your life care plan so none of the critical details are missed. A skilled catastrophic injury attorney will know all of the appropriate elements to include in your life care plan so that you have the best chances of recovering every dollar you are entitled to.

Remember, catastrophic injury victims are often eligible for both economic and non-economic losses. This means you may be able to recover damages not only for the medical costs you have incurred and will continue to incur due to the injury, but also the compensation you deserve for your pain and suffering.

We’re Here for Catastrophic Injury Victims

If you’ve sustained a catastrophic injury as a result of another’s carelessness, you may be able to recover compensation for your losses. Don’t hesitate to reach out to our skilled team right away to learn more about how we can help with your case. We have helped many others in similar situations and we want to do everything we can to help you too.

Contact our firm today at (210) 226-8888 or fill out the online contact form. Speak with a member of our team and learn about your rights to move forward!