When it comes to personal injuries, the extent of harm can range from mild to deadly. The compensation that comes with a personal injury lawsuit also varies significantly. Claims for mild injuries may cover medical care and lost wages. Moderate and severe injuries may include additional damages, such as pain and suffering, the costs of rehab, and more. Catastrophic injuries tend to result in large compensation awards because they indicate that the injury was life-altering and that the injured person will be unable to return to work or resume normal activities.

While no Connecticut statute defines catastrophic injuries, federal law does. 42 U.S.C.S. § 3796b defines them as injuries that prevent people from doing any gainful work. This is a stricter approach than that taken by Connecticut courts, which examine whether the injuries are permanent and debilitating. If you or a loved one sustained a severe injury, do not wait to contact a Torrington catastrophic injury lawyer. The process for filing these claims is identical to the process for filing other personal injury claims. Our team of personal injury attorneys at D’Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC have extensive experience with catastrophic injuries and death and have negotiated a multitude of settlements based on lifelong injuries, lost wages, the projected costs of lifelong care, and non-economic damages.

Is My Injury Catastrophic?

Whether or not an injury is catastrophic depends on the nature and extent of the injury combined with the injured person’s physical, mental, and emotional condition before the injury. For example, a highly conditioned athlete may recover more substantially from an injury than others. Insurance companies may want to treat every injury like a best-case scenario when that does not accurately reflect reality for most people.

Generally, a catastrophic injury must profoundly impact your quality of life and ability to care for yourself. Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), spinal injuries, paralysis, amputations, and damage to internal organs are some, but not all, of the potential causes of these life-changing injuries.

The manner in which an accident happens may not seem severe or dramatic but, nevertheless can lead to catastrophic injuries. For example, slip and fall accidents are one of the leading causes of TBIs. Severe accidents that tend to lead to catastrophic injuries include, but are not limited to:

Drowning and other swimming pool injuries can also lead to catastrophic injuries, especially for children.

A Torrington attorney with experience handling catastrophic injury cases can help you understand your legal rights,, promptly investigate how and why it happened and begin legal proceedings to help get your life back together. The lawyers at D’Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC can use our years of experience to help you obtain comprehensive compensation to help you heal.

How to Get Compensation for a Catastrophic Injury

Getting compensation usually takes the form of a personal injury claim against the person responsible for your catastrophic injury. Generally, for someone to be liable, they must be negligent or have acted intentionally or recklessly.

Proving negligence in court requires four elements: duty of care, breach, causation, and damages. The wrongdoers must have had a duty of care towards the injured person. That duty does not have to be personal—for example, drivers owe everyone else on the road a duty of care. They must breach that duty. The breach must cause the injury. Finally, you must prove that the injury resulted in the damages you are claiming.

The other person’s actions do not have to be the sole cause of your injuries. Connecticut General Statutes § 52-572h establishes a system of modified comparative negligence. Even if you contributed to your injuries, you can still recover from wrongdoers as long as you are not more than 50 percent at fault for your injuries.

Taking Prompt Legal Action After an Injury

Under Connecticut General Statutes § 52-584, you have two years to bring a claim after an injury or after an injury was—or should have been—discovered. However, the statute of limitations has an additional restriction, which is that the action must be brought within three years of the original event. While that may not impact most claims, it can impact hidden tort claims, such as exposure to toxins or medical malpractice, where a reasonable person may not be able to detect the original event until after the expiration of the legal timeframe. Some time frames for certain claims can be much shorter, or longer, so it is very important to call us right away after a catastrophic injury.

Our Torrington Catastrophic Injury Attorneys Want to Help You

Recovering from a catastrophic injury can feel overwhelming. It changes almost every aspect of your life and the lives of your loved ones. Adding a lawsuit or insurance claim can seem even more overwhelming, but legal proceedings may be necessary not just to secure your financial future and pay for future medical treatment but also to provide for your family.

Our attorneys at D’Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC, offer free, no-obligation consultations. A Torrington catastrophic injury lawyer can provide the information and help you need to understand your potential legal rights, time limitations, and more. Call today to discuss your case.