Catastrophic Injuries in Massachusetts
An injury that is so severe and life-changing is often referred to a catastrophic injury. Suffering a catastrophic injury may result in permanent disability, lifelong pain, constant therapy and continued rehabilitation, as well as the inability to work and perform normal day-to-day activities. In addition to the physical pain and suffering, expensive medical bills and the trauma from an accident caused by another’s negligence often leads to heightened stress and mental anguish.
The physical and emotional pain, coupled with the financial implications associated with suffering catastrophic injuries can be devastating for the victim and their loved ones. Dealing with insurance companies and medical providers during the recovery process can be difficult and cause further stress. Hiring a law firm experienced with handling catastrophic injury claims can help put a victim at ease and allow them to focus on recovering from their injuries.
If you or a loved one sustained catastrophic injuries in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you or your family member may be entitled to financial compensation. If the accident occured in Massachusetts, you should immediately contact our experienced Massachusetts catastrophic injury attorneys at Riccio Law. We will aggressively fight for your rights and help you obtain the compensation you rightfully deserve.
Types of Catastrophic Injuries & Common Causes
Catastrophic injuries are so severe that they significantly diminish the victim’s quality of life. They usually result in long term or permanent disability and may require lifelong medical treatment and rehabilitation. There are various types of catastrophic injuries, including:
- Traumatic head/brain injuries
- Neck and spinal cord injuries
- Severe burns
- Organ damage
Catastrophic injuries are often the result of negligent, reckless, and sometimes criminal acts by another individual. Such serious injuries are often sustained in the following types of accidents:
- Car accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Workplace accidents
- Construction site accidents
- Slip and falls
- Medical malpractice
- Defective products
- Premise liability
Legal Liability in a Catastrophic Injury Case
In catastrophic injury cases, like all personal injury lawsuits, the victim/plaintiff must establish that the defendant owed him/her a duty of care and the defendant’s negligence or recklessness was the proximate cause of the victim’s injuries. Even in cases where the at-fault party is facing criminal charges because of their actions, the victim can still file a civil lawsuit seeking financial compensation for their injuries.
Generally, the lawsuit will be filed against the insurance carrier for the liable party. Having an experienced catastrophic injury attorney can make the difficult and painful experience a little less stressful. While money cannot heal the injuries and erase all the pain, obtaining financial compensation holds the liable party accountable for their behavior and can help ease the burdens of the recovery process.
By proving another’s negligence or recklessness was the cause of the accident and resulting catastrophic injuries, a plaintiff may be entitled to recover damages for medical bills, lost wages, and loss of future earning capacity. He/she may also recover damages for pain and suffering, rehabilitation costs, caregiving related expenses, and any necessary home modifications needed as a result of the victim’s physical condition.
Personal injury claims, particularly those involving catastrophic injuries can be time-consuming and usually require complex legal and medical analysis. In catastrophic injury cases, the plaintiff should have a skilled catastrophic injury attorney by their side to fight for the compensation he/she deserves.
Massachusetts Comparative Negligence Law
In personal injury lawsuits, Massachusetts uses a modified comparative fault system whereby the victim can recover damages so long as they are less than 51 percent at-fault. Pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws (M.G.L) Chapter 231 Section 85, an individual who sustained injuries in an accident is not barred from recovery despite being partially responsible. Under the 51 percent comparative negligence rule, a plaintiff is permitted to recover damages proportional to their percentage of liability.
For example, if you were injured in an accident and suffered $100,000 in damages but were found to be 20% at-fault, you would be entitled to up to $80,000 in damages.
Massachusetts Statute of Limitations
Regardless of the strength of a personal injury claim, failure to follow specific procedural rules and meet certain deadlines may bar recovery. Under M.G.L. Chapter 260 §2A, the statute of limitations for filing a catastrophic injury lawsuit, as with other personal injury claims, is three years from the date of the accident. In certain cases, the statute of limitations may be extended to 3 years from when the injuries were first discovered or should have been discovered.
By failing to file a civil complaint within the statute of limitations, a plaintiff is likely barred from suing the liable party and potentially recovering damages for injuries. Working with an experienced Massachusetts catastrophic injury lawyer will ensure your claim is filed within the statute of limitations and all other filing deadlines are met.
Contact a Massachusetts Catastrophic Injury Attorney
While pursuing a personal injury claim can be lengthy and confusing, the process may be further complicated when the victim suffers catastrophic injuries. If you are in Massachusetts and you or a loved one has sustained catastrophic injuries in an accident due to someone else’s negligence, we are here for you. Our skilled and experienced catastrophic injury attorneys at Riccio Law will use every available resource to help you recover the compensation you deserve and need to help you move forward with your life. Contact our offices today to schedule a free consultation, discuss your legal rights and learn more about our services.