Hundreds of thousands of people are injured in accidents each year. Some injuries are relatively minor, such as small cuts or bruises. Others are devastating, life-changing events from which the victim may never fully recover. Anyone who is injured in an accident caused by another party’s negligence deserves quality legal representation, but never is this more important than in catastrophic injury cases, such as those involving the loss of a limb. The Pembroke Pines catastrophic injury lawyers at Cohn & Smith have the knowledge and the resources to help amputees and other victims seek maximum compensation from any responsible person or entity. We understand the physical and psychological turmoil that is inflicted by an amputation, as well as the substantial financial costs that may be imposed.Bringing a Negligence Claim after an Amputation
The first step in pursuing damages after an accident that results in an amputation, such as a car or truck crash or an incident of medical malpractice, is to prove that the defendant in the case was negligent. To do this, the plaintiff must show that the defendant had a legal duty of care, such as the duty to keep a proper lookout while driving. Second, the plaintiff is required to show that the defendant breached the duty that was owed to the plaintiff. These steps can sometimes be accomplished through lay witness testimony, but in some cases it may be necessary to retain an expert witness to show what the defendant should have done differently.
Once the plaintiff has established the elements of duty and breach, he or she must also identify a link of causation between the defendant’s breach of duty and the accident from which the amputation resulted. Finally, compensable damages must have arisen from the accident. People who have lost a limb may be able to receive a broad range of damages, since an amputation affects many areas of a victim’s life and often the lives of the victim’s loved ones. Forms of compensation may include past and future medical expenses, loss of future earning capacity, loss of enjoyment of life, pain and suffering, and loss of spousal consortium.
It is important to note that, under Florida’s pure comparative fault statute, the defendant in a negligence case can ask the court to apportion at least some fault to the plaintiff if there is evidence to support such a finding. Although a finding of comparative negligence does not defeat the plaintiff’s claim, it may reduce his or her compensation in direct proportion to the percentage of fault assigned to him or her. For instance, if the jury returns a verdict of $1 million but finds that the plaintiff was 30% at fault, the court will enter a $700,000 judgment in the plaintiff’s favor.Seek Guidance from a Catastrophic Injury Lawyer in Pembroke Pines
Amputees face many challenges on physical, emotional, and financial levels. A person who is seriously injured by someone else’s carelessness or misconduct should receive all of the compensation to which he or she may be entitled. To assert your legal rights following an amputation, call the knowledgeable Pembroke Pines attorneys at Cohn & Smith at (954) 431-8100 or contact us online to set up a free appointment. We have assisted many victims throughout South Florida, including in Aventura, Hollywood, Davie, Fort Lauderdale, Weston, Sunrise, Tamarac, Pompano Beach, Coral Springs, and cities throughout North Dade County. No legal fees are collected until and unless your case ends in a settlement or judgment in your favor. If you need a car accident attorney or assistance with another personal injury claim, knowledgeable and dedicated representation can make all the difference in your case.