The core of any personal injury claim is bodily harm. While property damage or emotional trauma might be significant, a physical injury that requires medical care is essential to start a case.
These injuries come in a variety of forms and degrees of severity. Generally, it can be useful to separate them into the categories of temporary and permanent injuries. It is essential to remember that a defendant who is found to be at fault for a claimant’s injuries should provide monetary compensation.
If you or a loved one suffered an injury due to another person’s careless or reckless behavior, it might be beneficial to retain a lawyer who is familiar with pursuing claims for the numerous types of bodily injuries in Michigan. A skillful attorney at Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C. could help you to evaluate your losses and work to make the legal connection between those losses and the negligence of another person, business, or entity.
Many injuries that give rise to civil lawsuits are temporary. However, this does not mean that they are not serious. Many of these injuries can leave a person in significant pain, jeopardize their ability to earn a living, and can even threaten their lives if a person does not receive proper and prompt medical care.
Perhaps the clearest example of these types of injuries is broken bones. Bones can be surprisingly fragile, and incidents such as car wrecks or trip and falls often result in fractured bones. While a broken bone is always a serious injury, with proper medical care, it can heal to almost full strength. Other examples of temporary injuries include:
- Separated joints
- Cuts and bruises
- Sprained ligaments
- 1st-degree burns
These types of bodily injuries in Michigan can still justify significant demand packages. Although a person makes a full recovery, it may take many months to do so—and cause them emotional anguish and missed work in the meantime.
The more severe class of bodily injuries are those from which a person will never make a full recovery. These are injuries that can affect a person’s internal organs, injuries that necessitate an amputation, severely broken bones, and traumatic brain injuries.
These types of injuries can complicate a personal injury claim. Because a plaintiff will carry the effects of the injury for the rest of their life, these claims for compensation should make accommodations for the permanent nature of the injury. A claim can, therefore, demand payments for future medical care, future lost income, and even for a general loss of quality of life that results from the disability.
Permanent physical injuries can result from trauma to peoples’ eyes, face, chest, and hips. These incidents can result in a lack of mobility, an inability to see, difficulty breathing, and even permanent disfigurement. Because injuries to the eyes and face can lead to scarring, the emotional impact of these losses can also be calculated.
No matter how severe a plaintiff’s injuries may be, there is a limited time to pursue a case. Michigan Compiled Laws §600.5805 says that most plaintiffs might only have three years from the date of the incident—depending on the root cause of the injury—to pursue compensation for their losses.
There are several different types of fractures, which are classified as closed or open (compound and simple) or multi-fragmentary (formerly comminuted). Closed fractures are those in which the skin is intact, while open (compound) fractures involve wounds that communicate with the fracture and may expose the bone to contamination. Because open fractures carry an elevated risk of infection, they are often treated with antibiotics and require prompt surgical treatment.
Simple fractures, on the other hand, are breaks that occur along one line, splitting the bone into two pieces, while multi-fragmentary fractures involve the bone splitting into multiple pieces. A simple, closed fracture is much easier to treat and has a much better prognosis than an open, contaminated fracture. Other types of broken bones include:
- Complete Fracture: Here, a fragment of the bone is separately completely
- Incomplete Fracture: Despite a break, the bone remains partially-joined
- Linear Fracture: This fracture runs parallel to the bone’s long axis
- Transverse Fracture: This break leaves the bone at a right angle along its long axis
- Oblique Fracture: This break leaves the bone diagonal to its long axis
- Compression Fracture: These breaks usually arise from the vertebrae
- Spiral Fracture: As a result of this type of break, part of the bone becomes twisted
- Comminuted Fracture: This break causes multiple fragments
- Compacted Fracture: Here, the bone fragments collide with each other
- Open Fracture: During this break, the bone reaches the skin
- Bug fracture: Given its name because the break has the appearance of a crushed bug, despite the bone remaining in place
Many subtypes of fractures about the hip joint are colloquially known as ‘hip fractures’. Although a true hip fracture involves the joint, the following four proximal femur fractures are commonly referred to as ‘hip fractures’. There are different types of treatment for each type of fracture.
- A femoral head fracture denotes a fracture involving the femoral head. This is usually the result of high energy trauma and dislocation of the hip joint often accompanies this fracture
- A femoral neck fracture (sometimes neck of femur (NOF), subcapital, or intracapsular fracture) denotes a fracture adjacent to the femoral head in the neck between the head and the greater trochanter. These fractures have a propensity to damage the blood supply to the femoral head, potentially causing avascular necrosis
- An intertrochanteric fracture denotes a break in which the fracture line is between the greater and lesser trochanter on the intertrochanteric line. It is the most common type of ‘hip fracture’ and prognosis for bony healing is generally good if the patient is otherwise healthy
- A subtrochanteric fracture actually involves the shaft of the femur immediately below the lesser trochanter and may extend down the shaft of the femur
Oftentimes, these hip injuries are treated with screws and plates, and other times a full or partial hip replacement is needed. A hip fracture is ultimately diagnosed by an x-ray, although there are some common complaints during a physical exam that also assist with the diagnosis. The surgery is performed by an orthopedic surgeon.
After the surgery, physical rehabilitation and exercise are often prescribed. Medications are also often given to reduce the risk of blood clots. During the rehabilitation period, the patient will often need assistance with toileting, transfers, and other needs.
Bodily Injury Settlement Example
A customer was shopping at CVS Pharmacy and asked a store employee to help price a chair that she could not reach. As the employee handled the chairs, numerous chairs and their metal bin containers fell down. One chair hit the customer in the head causing a traumatic brain injury.
A personal injury lawsuit was filed by the customer against the store alleging permanent injuries and damages. The store denied liability and claimed the injury was not serious. The parties could not agree to a settlement and the case went to trial. The jury awarded the plaintiff $4,616,000.
Call a Lawyer to Pursue Recovery for Any Type of Bodily Harm in Michigan
A defendant who is at fault for a bodily injury always carries liability to provide compensation. This applies both when a plaintiff makes a full recovery or when the incident leaves them with a permanent disability. Injuries to a person’s eyes, face, or hearing can all cause severe loss of quality of life in addition to bodily harm.
Other injuries such as broken bones, hip separations, and chest injuries may require invasive surgeries to correct. The most severe types of bodily injuries, those that affect the central nervous system, may leave a person paralyzed or with brain damage.
A compassionate and skillful lawyer might be able to help you if a bodily injury is the result of another party’s negligence. A legal professional at Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C. could work tirelessly to measure your damages and to pursue a claim for fair compensation. Contact an attorney today to make an appointment for a free consultation.
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