Did you or a loved one suffer a catastrophic injury in Morristown? If so, you may be facing an uphill battle to get the treatment you need and to return to life as you once knew it.
At The Terry Law Firm, our attorneys have extensive experience helping people who’ve suffered catastrophic injuries in car accidents, truck accidents, slips and falls, workplace accidents, and more. We know the devastating physical and financial toll these injuries can have on your life and those closest to you.
If someone else’s careless, reckless, or intentional actions caused your injury, the law allows you to seek fair compensation for the harm you’ve suffered. Our Morristown catastrophic injury lawyers have more than 50 years of combined legal experience helping people like you seek justice.
We take a personalized, compassionate approach to personal injury cases. We don’t rely on “cookie-cutter solutions.” Find out how we can help you by calling one of our three locations throughout East Tennessee or by reaching out to us online.
What Makes an Injury ‘Catastrophic’?
A “catastrophic” injury is any injury that is considered to be severe and is likely to have a lasting impact on the victim. These injuries may not always be permanent but may take months or years to heal. The physical and emotional impact the injury will have on the victim is the primary consideration when categorizing it as “catastrophic.”
In practical terms, catastrophic injuries could include the loss of a limb, damage to the brain, spinal cord damage resulting in paralysis, severe burns, and more. These injuries can have a lasting or permanent impact on the victim’s central nervous, respiratory, urinary, gastrointestinal, excretory, reproductive, circulatory, and other systems within the body.
Types of Catastrophic Injuries
Some injuries that could be catastrophic include:
- Spinal cord damage – Any time an accident damages the spinal cord is cause for alarm. Damage to the spinal cord can cause loss of feeling or function in different parts of the body. If the damage is extensive, it could result in partial or complete paralysis.
- Severe burns – Minor burn injuries can be painful, but they heal with little scarring or permanent damage in most cases. Severe burns, though, can leave the victim with substantial scarring and permanent damage. If the burn isn’t appropriately treated, infections can result in further harm to the victim.
- Traumatic brain injuries – Similar to spinal cord injuries, any blow to the head should be cause for concern if you’ve been in an accident. A hard blow to the head can cause brain function loss; changes to memory, personality, and cognition; and the loss of bodily function. Many brain injuries will never fully heal. Their effects can last for the rest of your life.
- Loss of a limb – Having a limb badly damaged or crushed in a workplace accident or motor-vehicle crash may result in the limb being amputated. Losing a limb makes it harder to enjoy many of the activities a victim took part in before their injury.
- Loss of hearing or eyesight – Brain injuries or a traumatic blow to the head or face can cause the loss of hearing or vision, which can completely change how a victim interacts with the world and makes many activities much more difficult.
Common Causes of Catastrophic Injuries in Morristown
Some of the most common causes of catastrophic injuries we see at our Morristown personal injury firm include:
- Car accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Truck accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Premises liability injuries (including slip-and-falls, trip-and-falls, dog bites, and more)
- Construction accidents
- Sports injuries
- Fires and explosions
- Medical malpractice
- Violence (including shootings, fights, and more)
How to Prove Liability in a Catastrophic Injury Case
If you’ve suffered a catastrophic injury and someone else is to blame, you could be entitled to significant compensation. Getting what you’re rightfully owed will require proving that the other party was liable for the accident or intentional act.
To establish liability, you should hire a skilled injury lawyer to build a strong case on your behalf. Your attorney can investigate the accident and collect evidence to prove your claim.
Some types of evidence that could be vital to your injury claim include:
- Medical records
- Photos or video from the accident scene
- Black box data recorders (many vehicles now have this technology built-in)
- Surveillance video or photos from the accident scene(for example, from traffic cameras or CCTV cameras in a business)
- Testimony from accident reconstruction experts
- Testimony from medical experts
- Testimony from witnesses at the accident scene
- Police reports, roadside sobriety tests, toxicology reports, traffic tickets or arrest records, and other official law enforcement records
- Cell phone data and text message records
- Employment hiring and training records(in the event of a collision with a commercial vehicle)
- Driver logs and records(in the event of a collision with a commercial vehicle)
Because vital evidence could be lost, cleaned up, or destroyed after an accident, it is crucial to hire a lawyer right away. Your attorney will work quickly to secure the evidence necessary to prove that the other party was responsible for the accident and the resulting injuries.
Types of Compensation for a Catastrophic Injury
Tennessee law allows people who’ve suffered catastrophic injuries to seek compensation for the losses they’ve incurred and the physical and emotional pain they’ve been forced to endure. Among other things, you could potentially receive compensation for:
- The cost of your medical bills, including any ongoing care you may need
- Lost wages
- Reduced capacity to work and earn a living
- Damaged personal property
- Physical pain
- Mental and emotional anguish
- Loss of consortium (which includes compensation for the family of a victim for loss of companionship, household duties, and more)
There are two essential things to know if you’re considering filing a claim after a catastrophic injury:
- First, Tennessee gives accident victims just one year from the date of their injury to file a lawsuit, so it’s important to act quickly after you’ve been hurt.
- Second, you could still recover compensation for your injury even if you are found partially responsible for the accident. If you were partly liable for your damages, your award would be reduced by whatever percentage of liability you’re assigned. This means that it is crucial to speak with an injury attorney regardless of what happened. Don’t assume you aren’t eligible to recover compensation until you’ve discussed your case with a knowledgeable lawyer.
Contact a Morristown Catastrophic Injury Attorney Today
Suffering a catastrophic injury is something you never anticipated or deserved. While these injuries can have a lasting impact on your life, it is not the end. A brighter future still awaits you. With the help of a compassionate and skilled injury attorney, you could get the compensation you need to live your life with the comfort and dignity you deserve.
The Morristown catastrophic injury lawyers of The Terry Law Firm are ready to put our experience and resources to work for you. Our goal is to help you seek every penny you’re due so you can move on with your life.
Call us or reach out online for a free consultation. We’re standing by, ready to assist you.
Tennessee is very unique in that the statute of limitations in Tennessee is much shorter than in other states. The statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Tennessee is generally one (1) year. There are exceptions to the one (1) year statute of limitations.
In Tennessee, one exception to the statute of limitations is the discovery rule. The statute of limitations in Tennessee does not start to run until a person knows or should have known about an injury.
There is currently a provision in the Tennessee Code regarding extending the statute of limitations where persons have criminal charges brought against them and they caused or contributed to an injury. In these cases, it is possible that the statute of limitations may be extended to two (2) years. At this stage, there has been no ruling from the Tennessee Supreme Court on exactly how this statute should be interpreted; therefore, we recommend filing cases within one (1) year.
The statute of limitations in property damage cases in Tennessee is three (3) years and the statute of limitations for a breach of contract in Tennessee is six (6) years. It is important to note that breach of implied warranty of merchantability, which are theories that are often used in product liability cases, carries a six (6) statute of limitations.
At The Terry Law Firm, clients are welcome to come to our Morristown office, our Sevierville office, or our Greeneville office for a free consultation. This is true for virtually any type of case.
In personal injury cases, in particular, The Terry Law Firm works on a contingency fee basis which means that The Terry Law Firm does not receive any compensation, nor are you required to pay anything, unless we are successful on your behalf.
Our general fee in personal injury cases (like most firms) is one-third (1/3). The Terry Law Firm advances all costs and expenses in the case until the matter is resolved. If we are not successful for a client in a personal injury case, then they are not required to pay anything.
The Terry Law Firm regularly handles cases for clients who have been involved in out-of-state accidents. We have handled cases as far west as West Texas and South Dakota. We have had cases in eastern North Carolina, Virginia, and Florida. It is a regular part of The Terry Law Firm’s business to handle cases outside of Tennessee.
Handling a case outside of Tennessee does not cost the client any more than it would if we were handling a case in Tennessee. In fact, the client will likely notice very little difference in a case handled outside of the state versus one handled in the State of Tennessee.