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Santa Barbara Traumatic Limb Loss

Compensation After a Traumatic Amputation

Traumatic amputation is the second leading cause of amputation in the United States. Most amputations are a direct result of sudden accidental injuries where a body part, typically a toe, finger, hand, arm, foot, or leg, is either completely or partially severed from the body.

NordstrandBlack PC helps amputation victims recover money for their losses. We provide a free consultation to evaluate your potential claim. We help our clients get the care they need and hire the best experts to prove liability and losses.

Following traumatic amputation, surgery is generally required to repair the neuromuscular tissue, close the skin and reattach muscle. Traumatic amputation injuries are potentially life threatening and require emergency medical treatment followed by long term medical care and rehabilitation. Whether a body part was successfully reattached or not, an accident victim may suffer from the following conditions:

  • PTSD
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Phantom limb pain
  • Necrosis of the replanted body part
  • Vascular problems
  • Infection
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Muscle shortening
  • Chronic pain
  • Physical inactivity

Commonly Asked Questions:

What types of accidents result in traumatic amputation?

There are approximately 200,000 amputations in the United States each year, with 45% of those caused by trauma. The most common cause of traumatic amputation is vehicle accidents (car, truck, motorcycle, train, bus, pedestrian, etc.). Other common causes include: industrial accidents, construction accidents and firearm accidents.

What is phantom pain?

Phantom pain consists of pain, tingling, itching and numbness where the amputated body part was. It happens in approximately 80% of all amputations. Phantom pain can happen at the time of amputation and even months or years later.

What kind of rehabilitation is typically required with traumatic amputation?

In the event of a traumatic amputation, a rehabilitation plan is needed to help a patient manage the post-operative period. An appropriate plan includes planning for the appropriate level of care and educating the patient and family to prevent complications. An occupational therapist evaluates living conditions to make sure they are safe to accommodate the patient.

What compensation can I receive for my injuries?

Under the law, you are entitled to recover money for your injuries and losses. There are two categories of losses or damages available in California: economic damages and noneconomic damages.

  • Economic damages are those damages that are quantifiable financial losses, such as lost wages and earnings, medical expenses, and other out-of-pocket spending.
  • Non-economic damages are often referred to as pain and suffering. Pain and suffering includes past and future physical pain, mental suffering, and emotional distress. Noneconomic damages are difficult to determine because there is no formula to calculate this loss, which is subjective.

Each person’s damages are different. An experienced Santa Barbara personal injury lawyer knows how to present these losses to an insurance company and a jury to maximize your recovery.

What should I do if I or a loved one has an accident caused by the negligence of another person?

If you suffer injuries in an accident due to the fault of another person, it’s important that you contact an experienced personal injury lawyer immediately to determine if you have a viable claim. NordstrandBlack PC advises our clients to seek immediate medical attention if they are injured and to photograph the scene, the subject of whatever caused your injury, and all visible injuries you have suffered. You should get contact information for all witnesses and call the police. A lawyer will be sure that the pertinent evidence is preserved.

How long will it take for my case to resolve?

When a client reaches a point of maximum medical improvement (MMI), which happens when the client’s medical treatment has ended or the client’s condition has gotten as good as it’s going to get, we will send a demand letter to the responsible party’s insurance carrier and attempt to settle the case. If the opposing sides are not able to resolve the claim, the parties can agree to mediation or arbitration or the injured party can file a lawsuit. Many of our cases settle before a lawsuit is filed. If a lawsuit is filed it generally takes about a year from the date of filing to get a trial date. But, remember that it could take up to two years before the case gets to trial.

Who will pay for my medical bills?

When you are injured in an accident due to the fault of another, not only do you have to make sure you are receiving appropriate medical care for your injuries, but you are also responsible for paying your medical bills. These bills can be paid by your health insurance or car insurance if you have medical payments coverage. Often, clients do not have money to pay outstanding medical bills. Nonpayment of medical bills may affect your credit. NordstrandBlack PC is often able to help our clients receive medical treatment on a lien basis, which means that payment does not need to be made until your case is settled.

What happens if the at-fault party has no insurance or not enough insurance to cover my claims?

The person at fault for causing the accident is legally responsible for the damages they cause. In some cases, the at-fault party is not insured or does not have enough insurance to cover all damages. In these instances, NordstrandBlack PC will investigate all possible sources of insurance coverage, including homeowners, personal and auto insurance, and determine the personal assets of the responsible party.

If you (the not at fault, injured victim) have uninsured motorist /under-insured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage on your automobile policy, you should make a claim under the UM/UIM portion of your insurance policy. The UM/UIM insurance carrier will step into the shoes of the at fault party to cover your losses up to the amount of your UM/UIM policy limit. Your own insurance company has a duty to act in good faith to resolve your claim. This is not true with regard to the responsible party’s insurance company, which owes you no such duty. Because you were not at fault for causing the accident your insurance rates will not be affected if you make a claim under your own insurance policy.

If the at-fault party does not carry enough insurance to compensate you for your damages and you do not have UM/UIM coverage on your own auto policy or enough coverage to compensate you for your losses NordstrandBlack PC will investigate to determine if the at-fault party has assets of value, i.e. real property, savings accounts, other investments. Since the at-fault party is ultimately liable for all damages they cause, our law firm will investigate all possible revenue sources and go after those funds to insure our client is fully compensated for their damages.

How much will your office charge for representing me?

NordstrandBlack PC offers a free consultation and represents personal injury clients on a contingency fee basis. This means there is no fee if there is no recovery.

We care about our clients and have the experience to help you and your loved ones.

The attorneys at NordstrandBlack PC have over 75 years of combined experience. We are committed to providing the highest quality legal representation to our clients. We know the law. We know how insurance companies work and we vigorously advocate for our clients. If you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic amputation to the fault of another, you can get help. Call our offices today for your free consultation at (805) 962-2022.

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