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Denver Catastrophic Injury Lawyers

Catastrophic Injury Attorneys Serving Denver & All of Colorado

As catastrophic injury lawyers, Burg Simpson Law Firm is primarily focused on serving those who suffer severe, life-altering injuries due to someone else’s negligence. Catastrophic injuries can affect multiple areas of life, from caring for yourself on a daily basis to being able to work, to the relationships you have with your family and friends.

You should consult a catastrophic injury lawyer as soon as possible if you or someone you love was seriously injured in an accident. Reasons to call Burg Simpson include:

Learn how a catastrophic injury attorney at Burg Simpson can help with your case. Call 303-792-5595 today for a FREE and confidential case evaluation. Our catastrophic injury lawyers serve clients in Denver and communities throughout Colorado.

What Makes an Injury Catastrophic?

An injury may be considered catastrophic if it results in serious harm to your physical and psychological well-being—especially if the damage is permanent. Catastrophic injuries typically require significant medical intervention and a lengthy recovery period. In some cases, a complete recovery may not be possible.

Catastrophic personal injury claims commonly center on the following:

  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Severe burn injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries, particularly those involving:
    • Paraplegia, or paralysis of the lower parts of the body
    • Tetraplegia/quadriplegia, or paralysis of the body below the neck
  • Loss of a limb
  • Injuries to the eye resulting in visual impairment or loss of the eye
  • Permanent hearing loss
  • Damage to or loss of a vital organ

Significant scarring or physical disfigurement (particularly of the face) may also be considered a catastrophic injury. In addition to potential physical limitations caused by scar tissue, disfiguring injuries can take an enormous mental and emotional toll.

There is no “official” medical classification for catastrophic injuries. Rather, the term refers to the impact on the person and their life going forward. If you or a member of your family sustained serious injuries in an accident caused by the negligence of an individual, company, or other party, you owe it to yourself to speak to a catastrophic personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.

What is considered a catastrophic injury? | Burg Simpson

What Are the Most Common Causes of a Catastrophic Injury?

Virtually any type of accident may result in tragic, life-altering injuries; however, certain situations have a higher likelihood of causing serious bodily harm. At Burg Simpson, we devote a substantial portion of our practice to representing plaintiffs in catastrophic injury matters. These include:

Trucking Accidents

Commercial semi-trucks are much larger than other vehicles. The difference in size and weight increases the risk of serious injury in the event of a collision with an 18-wheeler.

Motorcycle Accidents

All motorcycle crashes need to be taken seriously. Riders are highly likely to suffer catastrophic injuries—even if they wear a helmet and other safety gear.

Drunk Driving Accidents

Intoxicated drivers exhibit poor judgment and take more chances behind the wheel. They also have slower reaction times, which makes avoiding an accident more difficult. Victims of drunk driving crashes are more likely to be seriously injured due to the potential for high-speed and head-on collisions.

Hazardous Premises

From fall hazards to unrestrained dogs, dangerous premises have no shortage of issues that can cause serious injuries. Negligent security on the premises can also lead to catastrophic injuries due to physical assaults, sexual assaults, and more.

Defective Products

There is no shortage of product defects that have caused consumers to suffer serious injuries and even die. Our catastrophic injury law firm is intimately familiar with litigation concerning dangerous drugs and medical devices. We recognize the hardships people across the country suffer when their health is impacted by defective pharmaceutical products and regularly fight for just compensation on their behalf.

Contact Burg Simpson for FREE Today.

What Is the Difference Between Catastrophic Injury and Personal Injury?

Legally, there is no difference between a claim involving catastrophic injury and any other personal injury case. That said, catastrophic injury claims often involve a number of practical differences:

  • Catastrophic injuries require substantial medical evidence to demonstrate not only your current burdens but issues you will experience in the future.
  • Testimony from multiple expert witnesses is often required to support your claim.
  • Claims for damages for a catastrophic injury tend to be higher than they are in other injury cases.
  • Questions of liability may be more complicated, as multiple defendants may be at fault.
  • A settlement may be more difficult to achieve if you suffered a catastrophic injury.

Ultimately, a catastrophic injury attorney may need to file a lawsuit and prepare your case for trial. While this is possible with any injury claim, further litigation is more likely to be required with catastrophic injuries due to the complex issues involved.

Catastrophic Injury FAQs

How Do Catastrophic Injuries Differ From Other Types of Injury?

There are varying types of injuries that you can sustain in an accident. Many of them are minor and require little to no medical intervention. Others are more serious and may necessitate medical treatment, but won’t result in long-term or permanent damage. Others still are catastrophic, resulting in life-long challenges and forever altering the course of your life.

Catastrophic injuries are exactly what they sound like: injuries that have a catastrophic impact on their victims. These serious, life-altering injuries will require immediate and sustained medical assistance, will likely prevent you from supporting yourself, and significantly interfere with your quality of life.

Catastrophic injuries may require adaptive technologies, home modifications, supervised care, and years of therapy and rehabilitation – and even with these efforts, recovery may prove impossible.

When you are faced with the financial, emotional, and physical difficulties resulting from a catastrophic injury, you need a team of legal professionals who know how to navigate these complex cases. Our Denver catastrophic injury lawyers are here to help.

What Are the Leading Factors That Contribute to Catastrophic Injuries?

Top causes of catastrophic injury include:

  • Motor Vehicle Accidents. Car, truck, and motorcycle accidents are common causes of catastrophic injury. Bicycle and pedestrian accidents are, as well.
  • Workplace Accidents. Employees in several industries, including oil & gas, construction and building trades, and utilities, face the danger of catastrophic injury at work every day. So too do firefighters, law enforcement officers, and healthcare workers.
  • Sports and Recreational Accidents. Particularly for children, contact sports can result in serious injury. However, participating in most sports and recreational activities comes with the risk of a catastrophic injury.
  • Unmaintained/Unsupervised Premises. Missing safety features like handrails, slippery surfaces, and poorly maintained properties can pose several risks for accidents leading to catastrophic injury. Dogs that are not under their owner’s control can, as well.
  • Medical Malpractice. Anesthesia and medication errors, surgical errors, emergency room negligence, and other forms of medical malpractice often lead to catastrophic injury.

Of course, any accident can result in an injury that requires medical care, makes it difficult to work, and causes emotional and physical discomfort. Our attorneys have decades of combined experience helping victims of all types of accidents get justice. If you have been injured or a loved one has been killed, we are here to listen, provide expert advice, and guide you toward the best solution.

How Long Does It Take to Recover From a Catastrophic Injury?

The amount of time it takes to recover from a catastrophic injury depends on its severity and type. When it comes to catastrophic injuries, recovery is a relative term. Some individuals recover within several weeks or months. Others may require ongoing care and support for the rest of their lives.

While each injury is different, the path to recovery often includes two stages:

  • Stabilization. Stabilization includes emergency treatment and subsequent hospitalization. Depending on the severity of the injury, this stage may last anywhere from a few days to several months.
  • Rehabilitation. Rehabilitation may include residential programs, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and other rehabilitative treatments designed to assist in regaining function and independence. It may also include learning to live within new limitations and adapting to assistive technologies. Rehabilitation may take months or even years.

In addition to medical treatment and rehabilitation, recovery from a catastrophic injury often requires psychological support to assist in coping with its emotional impacts.

Recovery from a catastrophic injury varies greatly from person to person. Not only will the type and severity of the injury play a role, but so will your natural healing response, your age, your health at the time of the accident, and other individual factors.

What is the Statute of Limitations for a Catastrophic Injury in Colorado?

Generally speaking, you have two years to file a personal injury claim in Colorado (C.R.S. § 13-80-102(1)(a)). If your injury is the result of a motor vehicle accident, you have three years to file suit (C.R.S. § 13-80-101(1)(n)).

See Sections 13-80-101 and 13-80-102 of the Colorado Revised Statutes for more information.

Two to three years is not as long as it may seem, especially when you are dealing with a serious injury. To help protect your rights and options, it is always a good idea to contact an experienced injury lawyer as soon as possible following an accident.

At Burg Simpson, our seasoned Denver personal injury lawyers are ready to help. Contact us today to schedule your free case review and learn how we can help you seek the compensation your injury demands.

What Are My Options If I Suffer a Catastrophic Injury At Work?

You have a few options when you suffer a catastrophic injury at work in Colorado. One, and perhaps the most common, is workers’ compensation.

Nearly all employers are required to carry workers’ compensation in Colorado, a no-fault insurance program that provides a portion of weekly wages to individuals who have been injured on the job. Workers’ comp also pays for all medical expenses related to the injury.

Workers’ compensation provides short and long-term coverage, with compensation for both partial and total disability. However, while it covers all medical expenses, workman’s comp only provides a portion of lost wages and it does not include compensation for non-economic damages, such as physical pain and emotional distress.

If your injury is the result of someone else’s negligence, a defective tool, a carelessly placed box, or improper safety features for example, you may be entitled to file a personal injury claim. These claims require a liable party and seek compensation for things like lost wages and future earning potential, medical expenses, and other damages with definable cost(s). Personal injury claims can also seek general damages for issues with no fixed cost.

Some of the consequences of a catastrophic injury, such as trauma and physical discomfort, may not have a dollar amount attached to them. They have real-life ramifications all the same. While they are not considered for workers’ compensation claims, these issues are compensable through a personal injury suit.

Neither a personal injury claim nor workers’ comp is the best path for every individual. The lawyers at our firm have a proud history of success with both types of claims and welcome the opportunity to meet with you, free of both cost and obligation, to discuss your options in greater detail.

How Is Liability Determined for a Catastrophic Personal Injury?

People who suffer catastrophic injuries are often faced with enormous medical bills and other expenses. The damages may exceed the insurance coverage held by any one party, which is why it is crucial to identify any and all parties responsible for the accident.

A catastrophic injury lawyer will leave no stone unturned, fully investigating the incident that caused your injuries and identifying the individual(s) and/or organizations at fault. This process generally involves:

  • Visiting and photographing the scene of the incident
  • Reviewing photographs taken by the plaintiff, bystanders, and/or investigators for evidence of negligence
  • Interviewing witnesses
  • Obtaining and reviewing any available video footage
  • Requesting copies of investigative reports
  • Consulting expert witnesses

Your catastrophic injury attorney will also evaluate the available insurance coverage and prepare a strong case against all liable parties. The key to maximizing your compensation is to ensure that all of the defendants are included in any legal action.

What Compensation Is Available for a Catastrophic Injury?

Victims of catastrophic injury are entitled to the same types of damages as any other plaintiff in a personal injury matter. The principal difference is that the initial costs and the future losses tend to be much more significant.

Hiring a qualified catastrophic injury lawyer is essential for pursuing all of the compensation you deserve. Attorneys at Burg Simpson review the evidence carefully and often consult a number of expert witnesses to calculate the full extent of damages in your case.

You may be entitled to recovery of the following:

Economic Damages

Economic damages are the current financial losses you have sustained as a result of a catastrophic injury, as well as the future costs you are expected to suffer. They may include:

  • Medical bills, including:
    • All medical expenses incurred to-date
    • Future medical costs for surgeries, rehabilitation, etc.
    • Out-of-pocket costs for medication, assistive devices, etc.
    • The cost of home healthcare and support
  • Loss of income, including:
    • All lost wages to-date
    • Loss of future wages and earning capacity
    • Loss of benefits and other compensation through your employment
  • Out-of-pocket expenses, including:
    • The cost of medical-related travel
    • Expenses incurred to modify your home or vehicle
    • The cost of repairing or replacing damaged personal property
    • Bills for professional household services such as childcare, housekeeping, and other activities you can no longer perform

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages are the unquantifiable losses related to a catastrophic injury. They may include: 

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional and mental anguish
  • Loss of the enjoyment of life
  • Permanent disability
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Inconvenience
  • Loss of consortium (i.e., adverse effects on relationships with family members)

It is important to note that Colorado law caps non-economic damages in personal injury matters (except for injuries sustained as a result of medical malpractice, which are subject to a separate damages cap). The statutory cap is adjusted for inflation every 2 years.

For claims arising between January 1, 2022, and January 1, 2024, the non-economic damages cap is $642,180. Upon “clear and convincing evidence,” the court may increase the award to $1,284,370.

Punitive Damages

Also known as exemplary damages, punitive damages penalize defendants for certain types of egregious conduct. Punitive damages may be awarded if the court finds that the plaintiff’s catastrophic injury was caused by “fraud, malice, or willful and wanton conduct” on the part of the defendant (see Colorado Revised Statutes § 13-21-102).

Punitive damages awards are less common, as the standard goes beyond simple negligence. A Denver catastrophic injury lawyer at Burg Simpson can evaluate the circumstances to determine whether you may be entitled to punitive damages, as well as represent you at trial.

Denver catastrophic injury lawyers

Do I Need a Catastrophic Injury Lawyer?

Being injured in an accident that was not your fault can lead to a number of challenges. These challenges increase dramatically if the injuries are serious. A catastrophic injury can lead to physical impairment, emotional difficulties, and financial jeopardy for you and your family.

Taking legal action is probably the last thing on your mind in this situation; however, it is important to protect your rights. By hiring an experienced catastrophic injury lawyer, you can rest assured that a professional is advocating for your interests. Meanwhile, you and your loved ones can focus on recuperation.

While there is no legal requirement to hire a lawyer to handle the matter, having legal counsel improves the likelihood of a favorable outcome. Catastrophic injury attorneys can assist their clients with all aspects of the case, including:

  • Evaluating your case for FREE
  • Investigating the incident and collecting evidence to support your claim
  • Assessing fault and liability for catastrophic injury
  • Calculating the total damages in your case—present and future
  • Negotiating a fair settlement with the insurance company (or companies)
  • Filing a lawsuit against the defendant(s) as needed
  • Preparing your case for trial
  • Representing you in court if necessary and fighting for the maximum trial award

Insurance companies employ a number of tactics to try to avoid liability for personal injury. They generally offer to settle claims for less than they are worth. In some cases, the insurance company may even try to blame you for the accident and deny compensation entirely.

Catastrophic injury lawyers can help push back against these tactics. Our goal is to hold defendants accountable for the serious injuries our clients sustain and win them the full compensation they deserve.

Why Choose Burg Simpson?

How Long Do I Have to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Colorado?

There are two different time limits to be aware of when it comes to Colorado personal injury claims:

  • The statute of limitations for most personal injury matters in Colorado is 2 years; however,
  • If the injury was caused by “the use or operation of a motor vehicle,” the statute of limitations is 3 years from the date of the accident (see Colorado Revised Statutes § 13-801-101(n)(I)).

You do not want to miss the applicable deadline. A catastrophic injury attorney will take action promptly to protect your right to compensation.

It is not always necessary to file a lawsuit after suffering a personal injury. Many claims are resolved by negotiating a settlement, often without having to initiate a lawsuit. If litigation is required (a distinct possibility in cases where the plaintiff suffers a catastrophic injury), you need to have a proven trial attorney who can file suit and prepare a strong case on your behalf.

Contact a Denver Catastrophic Injury Lawyer Today

The catastrophic injury attorneys at Burg Simpson are well-versed in the challenges of complex personal injury claims. As Good Lawyers. Changing Lives.®, our goal is to achieve an outcome that fairly compensates people who have been seriously injured through no fault of their own.

In addition to pursuing maximum compensation on your behalf, our firm will provide you with guidance and support during this difficult time. We combine the experience and resources of a nationwide law firm with the hands-on approach of a local lawyer. This guarantees a personalized client experience catered to your unique needs and goals.

For a FREE and confidential case evaluation, call Burg Simpson at 303-792-5595 today. Our catastrophic injury lawyers serve clients in Denver, throughout Colorado, and nationwide.

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