Brain Injury Lawyer in Austin, TX
Traumatic brain injuries have devastating consequences for the injured person and everyone around them. In addition to requiring substantial medical care, the effects often have a long-term impact on the person’s quality of life. Such injuries alter physical, mental and emotional responses. In some cases, traumatic brain injuries change one’s personality completely.
A prompt diagnosis, thorough medical care and on-going rehabilitation are crucial to achieving a successful outcome following a brain injury. Unfortunately, these are expensive services that are even more difficult to afford when the injured individual is unable to work. At The Law Office of Joel A. Levine, Personal Injury Lawyer, we work hard to protect the rights of individuals who have suffered a traumatic brain injury due to negligence. Whether you are working, shopping or driving down a street in central Texas, other people are responsible for maintaining a safe environment and protecting your well-being. If this duty was breached, you deserve compensation.
If needed, our experienced team will take your case to trial and demand a just recovery. We will work with you to secure compensation for past and future medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, loss of consortium and other damages. With an experienced brain injury lawyer at your side, you will be in good hands throughout the litigation process.
Injuries Affecting the Brain
Injuries that cause brain damage fall into two categories. Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) include damage caused by a sudden trauma or external force. On the other hand, acquired brain injuries (ABIs) include internal conditions, such as oxygen deprivation, meningitis, infection and non-hereditary health issues that occur after birth. Children, teenagers and elderly individuals are more likely to suffer TBIs than other groups. According to the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities, 1 million children sustain concussions each year. Some 30,000 children experience long-term disabilities following the trauma.
How Head Injuries Occur
Statistics from the CDC show that sports-related concussions are the most common cause of TBIs followed by car accident injuries, bicycle and motorcycle accidents, work-related injuries, slip and fall accidents, falling merchandise, birth injuries and assaults. The causes of ABIs are slightly different and include a variety of medical conditions and emergency medical events, such as stroke, aneurysm, brain tumors, encephalitis, oxygen deprivation and infection. In some cases, your doctor may be responsible for your injuries if the condition wasn’t diagnosed or treated in a safe, accurate and timely manner.
Short and Long-Term Effects
Although 75 percent of TBIs are considered mild, approximately 5.3 million Americans have a long-term disability attributed to a head injury. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, approximately 50,000 people die from head injuries each year, and many more are left with debilitating conditions that severely affect their quality of life.
Even with advanced CT and MRI scans, head trauma is difficult to diagnose, and effects can linger for months or years. Because the symptoms of brain trauma can be severe or subtle, it’s imperative to visit an emergency room immediately. While preparing your case, your traumatic brain injury lawyer will review all treatment records and work with experts to determine if your condition was diagnosed and treated properly. Failing to diagnose such a condition or forcing a patient to leave the hospital too soon can severely impact recovery. If a medical professional is responsible for your condition, we will hold them responsible.
Some of the short-term conditions linked to head trauma include bleeding within the brain, bruising and physical injury to any part of the brain. Long-term health effects related to head trauma include these conditions.
- Erratic behavior
- Memory loss
- Mood swings
- Loss of coordination
- Vision problems
Because different parts of the brain control breathing, dexterity, speech, emotion and other functions, the effects of brain trauma vary drastically. Frontal lobe damage, for example, can impair concentration, hand-eye coordination, basic motor skills, reasoning, judgment and aspects of self-control and personality. According to the Brain Injury Institute, these injuries can make you a different person.
At the Law Office of Joel A. Levine, we are committed to offering professional, compassionate representation to injured individuals in Austin TX and the greater area. With six years of courtroom experience, Joel Levine is a knowledgeable traumatic brain injury lawyer who will determine who is responsible for your injuries and hold them accountable.
Your injuries are real, and you deserve real compensation to pay for your medical care and losses. Having brain injury lawyers on your side can make all the difference in helping you achieve the best possible recovery. If you are unable to come to our office in Austin TX, we will visit you anywhere in central Texas. We can even arrange a virtual consultation if that’s more convenient for you. Plus, you don’t have to pay anything unless we win your case.
Frequently Asked Questions About Brain Injury Lawsuits
Before you pursue a lawsuit, you most likely have some questions. Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about brain injury lawsuits.
How do I know if I have a legitimate case?
Many clients are unsure if they have the right to file a lawsuit in their particular case. If a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury due to the fault or negligence of someone else, you may have a case. The only way for us to determine whether or not you have a legitimate case is to hear your story, ask some questions, and investigate. Then we can give you our best recommendation for whether or not to pursue the case.
Will my case go to court or be settled out of court?
It is not possible to know ahead of time, because every case is different. The majority of personal injury lawsuits settle out of court, so the chances are good that yours might as well. Sometimes settling out of court results in a higher amount of compensation, but other times it may be less. It depends on your specific case.
How long does a brain injury lawsuit take?
There’s no definite amount of time. Brain injury lawsuits can take as little as 6 months to as long as a year or more. And after your case is settled, it may take even longer to receive the compensation you are awarded, if you win your case. Cases that settle out of court typically take less time than those that go to court.
What do I do if the insurance company attempts to contact me?
You are not obligated to talk to the other party’s insurance company, no matter what they say. The insurance company will try to get you to make a statement that will jeopardize your case and allow them to avoid paying you. Do not speak to them at all and contact your lawyer.
Do I need a lawyer to file a brain injury lawsuit?
You are not legally obligated to file your lawsuit with a lawyer. But your chances of a better outcome in or out of court are more likely with the help of an experienced personal injury attorney. You are more likely to be awarded compensation and a higher amount with a lawyer on your side.
What types of financial compensation can I get?
There are a few different categories of compensation that you can sue for in your lawsuit, such as current and future medical expenses, loss of income, rehabilitative costs, pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and loss of quality of life. While some of these may not have cost you any actual money, a dollar amount can be assigned to them for the purposes of the lawsuit.
How much do I have to pay a lawyer up front?
Most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis, meaning they don’t collect any fees unless you are awarded compensation. You and your lawyer will decide up front what percentage or amount of your compensation they will receive, and both parties are legally bound by a contract.
What if I don’t want to offend or burden the other party?
Many victims decline to file a lawsuit after a severe injury because they don’t want to offend the other party or cause them financial hardship. But in most cases, your lawsuit is against the insurance company that doesn’t want to pay for your injuries and hardships, not the individual or business at fault. You have every right to financial compensation that will help with the past and future financial difficulties that have resulted from the incident.
How long after the injury can a lawsuit be filed?
There is a statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits in the state of Texas, and traumatic brain injury falls under the category of personal injury. You only have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit.
Helpful Tips for Personal Injury Cases:
Call 911 and provide all pertinent details regarding the accident.
Never leave the scene of the injury.
Always request a police report.
Take as many photos of the scene as possible.
Secure personal information from any witnesses.
Never sign any paperwork without an attorney present.
Obtain copies of all medical documents regarding your injuries.
Contact our office to begin an immediate investigation.
Brain Injury Lawyer in Austin, TX
In a busy city like Austin TX, motorists frequently share the road with bicycle riders. Riding a bicycle is a great way to get exercise and enjoy the outdoors. You might also ride your bike to and from work. Some cyclists make a living as interoffice couriers or pedicab operators. Whatever your reason for riding, it's important for cyclists to obey traffic rules, watch out for errant drivers and make safe decisions. Bike accidents have the potential to cause severe and possibly fatal injuries. The risk of severe injuries in a bicycle accident is extremely high because riders have little or no physical protection aside from gloves and a helmet. Some of the most common injuries associated with these types of accidents are road rash, closed head injuries, brain damage, contusions, lacerations and broken bones.
Regardless of how severe the injuries are, the elements of proving a bicycle accident case are similar to any other auto accident. To recover compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, lost earnings, diminished earning capacity and other damages, your bicycle accident lawyer needs to prove that the motorist was negligent. This can be a complex process. First, a professional personal injury lawyer will gather the facts, document the accident scene and work with professionals to establish the conditions and situation that caused the collision. In a case like this, you might be fighting against a league of attorneys who work for the driver's insurance company and who will try to blame you. At the law office of Joel A. Levine, we have been handling bicycle and pedestrian accident cases since 2008. We are committed to recovering the fullest compensation for your injuries.
Bicycle Accident Statistics
The statistics on bicycle collisions are shocking. In Texas alone, approximately 42 cyclists die each year after collisions with cars and trucks. Nearly three-quarters of cyclists are concerned about safety and accidents. However, motorists are often oblivious to the bicycles that are on the road with them. In Austin TX, the police department reports that the city experiences an average of 315 bike collisions annually, including some 280 with injuries. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration acknowledges that accidents involving bicycles are under-reported. It's estimated that only 10 percent of injury cases are ever reported by law enforcement. Nevertheless, statistics are grave.
- Intoxicated motorists are responsible for 40 percent of fatal bike accidents.
- About half of all reported bike accidents involve motorized vehicles.
- Approximately 75 percent of accidents occur at or near intersections.
- Most fatal bicycle collisions take place between 4 a.m. and 8 p.m.
- One-fifth of fatal accidents occur between 8 p.m. and midnight.
- Cyclists accounts for 2 percent of all accident-related deaths.
Bicycle Accidents and Negligence
To determine responsibility in an accident case, your attorney will review the facts to establish whether the driver's negligence caused or contributed to the accident and subsequent injuries. The driver might be responsible if your attorney can prove that they cut into a designated bike lane, ran through a stop sign, were distracted or failed to observe a cyclist. Your bicycle accident lawyer can secure phone records to see if the driver was talking on the phone or texting at the time of the accident. Violations related to speeding, drunk driving and traffic signals are extremely effective pieces of evidence when establishing the driver's negligence.
Occasionally, cyclists are responsible for accidents. When bicycling in Austin or anywhere in central Texas, cyclists are expected to follow state and city laws. City ordinances and sections of the Texas Transportation Code require bicycles to have functional reflectors and headlights. Under these laws, a bicycle is a vehicle. Therefore, all bicycles are required to follow traffic signals and obey all traffic laws. For example, bicycles are required to use the right-most lane or shoulder and ride in the direction of traffic. A violation of any state or city rule permits law enforcement officers to initiate a traffic stop. Tickets are issued for violations and can become part of the cyclist's permanent driving record. Frequent bicycle violations recorded by the Austin Police Department include missing reflectors, failing to use a headlight after dark, running red lights, failing to obey stop signs, cycling the wrong way on a one-way street and cycling on sidewalks in business districts.
Hiring a Bicycle Accident Attorney
If you have been involved in an accident, you need effective representation from a qualified personal injury attorney. Injuries sustained in a bike accident can be severe and have long-lasting implications. In extreme circumstances, an accident lawsuit can become a wrongful death case if the cyclist dies due to their injuries.
At The Law Office of Joel A. Levine, we provide professional, competent representation and legal assistance to cyclists and other accident victims throughout central Texas. We offer free consultations and a contingency fee plan, so you don't have to pay anything unless we win your case. If you are unable to come to our office due to your injuries, our bicycle accident lawyer will come to you. Whether we provide legal advice or take your case to a jury trial, we aim to make the process clear, transparent and as easy as possible for you and your family. Call us today to take the first step toward recovering the compensation that you deserve after a bicycle accident injury.
Frequently Asked Questions
What types of injuries can result from a bicycle accident?
You can sustain a lot of injuries if you are involved in a bicycle accident. You can be thrown from your bicycle, which can cause everything from cuts, scratches, abrasions and bruises to broken bones to severe head trauma. The extent of the injuries you sustain typically are influenced by what hit you, such as another bicyclist or a car, the speed at which you and the other vehicle were traveling, and whether you were wearing a helmet or any protective gear.
What should you do after a bicycle accident?
After a bicycle accident, you should exchange information with whoever hit you, such as another bicyclist or a driver. Be sure to get their full name, address, driver's license information and insurance information. Another step you will want to take is obtain the names, phone numbers and addresses of all the witnesses who may have witnessed the accident. If possible, take pictures of the accident scene, showing anything that may have led to the accident, such as a driver running a red light or turning into a bike lane. Finally, obtain medical treatment. Bicycle accidents can cause internal injuries, so you should see a doctor if you feel pain.
Should I hire an attorney after a bicycle accident?
It is strongly recommended that you hire a personal injury attorney who has experience with bicycle accident cases after a bicycle accident occurs. Many insurance companies try to place fault on the bicyclist for the accident, trying to reduce or eliminate their insured party's responsibility in the accident. A lawyer can fight to show why the other party was at fault and why they should be responsible for your injuries. Additionally, an attorney can help you recover the maximum amount of money that you may be entitled to by properly valuing your case and fighting for the money you deserve.
How long do you have to file a lawsuit after a bicycle accident?
Each state has a different timeline in which you must file a personal injury lawsuit. In the state of Texas, you generally have two years to bring a lawsuit against another party for damages and injuries you sustained following a bicycle accident. If you fail to bring a lawsuit against the party within this timeframe, the statute of limitations expires, and you can no longer bring a case against the other party. There are a few exceptions to this rule though, such as when a minor is involved, so it is best to talk to a lawyer about the specific timeframe for filing after your bicycle accident.
What damages can you expect from a bicycle accident?
If you have been involved in a bicycle accident, you may be wondering what damages you can collect as an injured bicyclist. There are different damages that you may be able to collect, depending on the circumstances. The most common types of damages that one collects following a bicycle accident as lost wages, money for past, current and future medical expenses related to the injuries sustained in the accident, and money for pain and suffering.
Call us today at 512-982-1510 for a free consultation.