Traumatic Brain Injuries and Accident Victims: Serious Damages Need Serious Consideration

Car accidents are the leading cause of reported traumatic brain injuries. In fact more than half of all reported traumatic brain injuries stem from car accidents. This puts in perspective how dangerous getting into a car or motorcycle wreck can be. Suffering brain injury changes crash victims’ lives and the lives of their loved ones. Our Detroit accident attorneys understand how difficult it is for victims and their families to cope with the devastating consequences of brain injuries, and we are here to offer experienced, compassionate counsel in getting you the help you need.

Brain injuries are not like other injuries. When you break a leg or bruise your arm, not only do you know right away, but barring special circumstances, such injuries will heal in time. But brain injuries are not quite so predictable. Each brain injury is different from the next so it is very difficult to predict when, whether, and how someone will recover from a brain injury. Sometimes car accident victims may not even know they have a brain injury right away, or brain injury symptoms might only crop up much later.

What we do know is that the consequences to the victim can be catastrophic. Brain injuries can result in loss of movement, loss of memories, cognitive difficulties, loss of basic functions, and even affect the victim’s personality.

What Is Traumatic Brain Injury?

Traumatic brain injury sometimes involves puncturing or fracturing the skull, but it these kinds of brain injuries can also happen without that as well. Brain injuries can happen after rapid deceleration when a car hits another object. The brain is thrown against the side of the skull, causing injury.

Here are some of the types of brain injuries often related to car crashes:

  • Open head injuries
  • Closed head injuries
  • Deceleration injuries
  • Secondary injuries, including brain hemorrhage, brain swelling, infection, increased pressure or fluid buildup, and damage from decreased oxygen to the brain.

Uneven Treatment of Traumatic Brain Injury Victims: Time For a Change

Despite how damaging traumatic brain injuries are, courts do not take victims of traumatic brain injuries, such as concussions, seriously enough. 

However. laws across the country, including in Michigan, are moving toward taking brain injuries in other contexts, for instance youth athletics, more seriously. Michigan passed the Michigan Sports Concussion law, which went into effect in 2013, that addresses youth athletes suffering brain injuries. It mandates that all coaches, employees, volunteers, and other adults involved with a youth athletic activity complete a concussion awareness training program. It also requires that youth athletes be given educational materials about brain injuries and that parents sign off on receipt of this information. Furthermore, if an athlete is suspected of having suffered a concussion, they must be removed from participation in the activity immediately and can only return to the physical activity once a physician provides written clearance. This law gives traumatic brain injuries the respect they deserve by providing measures to prevent and mitigate the damage suffered by athletes.

The same should go for car accident victims. Courts often discount the seriousness of these injuries, and car or motorcycle crash victims are the ones who have to suffer the consequences later. In Michigan, an injury needs to be objectively manifested to go forward in court. This is a problem for brain injuries because they are not only sometimes undetected by the victim or by current medical scan technology, but also because the objective signs of brain damage may only show up later in the future. In fact, it is extremely common for a car accident victim to have suffered brain injury but for medical scans like MRIs to come back negative. Michigan’s general rule requiring objective manifestation in combination with negative medical scans end up placing barriers between brain injury sufferers and compensation.

It is important to note that there are exceptions to the requirement of objective manifestation in relation to some brain injuries—for instance, where there is a closed-head injury, the claim can go forward as a question of fact if a physician says under oath that there might be a serious brain injury. But even this is not always enough for a case to ultimately result in compensation for a car crash victim suffering brain injury. If you or a loved one has suffered brain injury, you need an attorney who know how to handle brain injury cases and navigate the potential pitfalls in court. You can count on our knowledgeable car accident attorneys to find the best options for your case. 

Experienced, Caring, and Determined: We Are Here To Help

Our Detroit attorneys have helped many brain injury sufferers and our experienced attorneys will sit down, talk with you, and help you get through this difficult time. We will fight for you and your family, and we will give your case the care and attention it deserves.

Call our Detroit personal injury law firm at (800) 638-6722 for a free consultation.

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