Average Settlement for Traumatic Brain Injury in Oregon

Navigating the aftermath of a traumatic brain injury (TBI) comes with several physical, emotional, and financial challenges. As you recover from your injury and work with a trusted Portland traumatic brain injury lawyer, it can be helpful to understand the landscape of TBI settlements and get a good idea of what kind of compensation you might be eligible for in Oregon.

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    From factors that influence settlement figures to the varying types of compensation available, here’s what you need to know as you seek fair compensation for your injuries.

    An Overview of Traumatic Brain Injuries in Oregon

    Traumatic brain injuries are a serious public health concern. Here's a glimpse into the sobering landscape of Oregon TBIs:

    These significant injuries leave lifelong impacts and can result in tragic deaths. Thankfully, compensation is available to recover from these life-altering injuries.

    What Is the Average Settlement for a Traumatic Brain Injury?

    What Is the Average Settlement for a Traumatic Brain Injury?

    There are three commonly recognized categories of TBIs: mild, moderate, and severe.

    • Mild: Usually begins with a brief loss of consciousness and is marked by continued confusion, headaches, and dizziness that resolve within days or weeks.
    • Moderate: Initial loss of consciousness for hours or days, marked by continued memory problems, difficulty concentrating, and emotional issues like anxiety or depression.
    • Severe: Often identified by a prolonged coma — afterward, the victim faces permanent brain damage, motor function impairments, speech difficulties, and significant changes in personality.

    Because traumatic brain injuries can vary greatly in severity, so do the settlements associated with them. Mild TBIs can settle $20,000–$80,000, moderate ones average around $100,000, and severe injuries can climb into the millions, with at least one recorded instance of a victim receiving $26 million.

    However, as you’ll soon find out, there’s a lot more that goes into these settlements than a high-level classification of the injury. Importantly, these numbers are mere estimates and don't represent a guarantee — every case is unique, after all.

    The best way to get a good idea of what you might be eligible for is to consult an experienced personal injury attorney. They will be able to tell you how various factors impact your claim.

    Factors Affecting TBI Settlement Value

    As mentioned, various other factors can greatly impact the compensation you may be eligible for, and understanding these factors can help you navigate the legal process and potentially maximize your compensation.

    With that in mind, here's a breakdown of the main elements that shape your TBI settlement value.

    Severity of the Injury

    This is the most crucial factor because the severity of a TBI can have varying impacts on your life and finances. Mild TBIs, for example, may seem negligible on the surface, but the truth is that they can have lingering symptoms that keep you from working for a time. They can also harm your relationships and overall health, potentially resulting in a snowball effect that is not immediately recognizable.

    Moderate TBIs often require hospitalizations and ongoing medical needs, leading to larger settlements that cover the significant costs associated with treatment.

    Severe TBIs can cause permanent disabilities and usually require extensive care. Because they can permanently remove you from the workforce and often cause irreparable damage to various aspects of your life, they come with the highest potential settlements.

    Severity of the Injury

    Medical Expenses (Current and Future)

    The settlement for your TBI should be enough to cover your medical costs, both past and future.

    This includes:

    • Hospitalization bills
    • Physician fees
    • Specialist consultations (neurologists, psychologists)
    • Diagnostic tests (CT scans, MRIs)
    • Medications
    • Rehabilitation therapy (physical, occupational, speech)
    • Durable medical equipment (walkers, wheelchairs, braces)
    • Home modifications (ramps, grab bars)

    When it comes to projected future costs, your lawyer will work with medical professionals to estimate the cost of ongoing treatment. This may include future surgeries, therapies, medications, and equipment. Life expectancy is also considered, as long-term care needs can be significant.

    Lost Wages and Earning Capacity

    This factor considers both immediate and future financial losses due to your TBI. Lost wages include all income lost due to missed workdays, reduced work hours, or inability to return to your previous job. To verify lost income, your lawyer can use pay stubs, tax returns, and employer documentation.

    If your TBI impairs your ability to perform your previous job or limits your career options, a vocational expert can assess your lost future earning potential and demonstrate your diminished earning capacity. This can be a significant component of your settlement, especially for younger individuals with long careers ahead.

    Pain and Suffering

    This acknowledges the physical and emotional distress caused by your TBI.

    Examples of evidence include:

    • Medical Records: Documentation of your pain symptoms, treatment plans, and limitations.
    • Pain Journals: Daily logs detailing the intensity, location, and duration of your pain.
    • Impact on Daily Life: Descriptions of how your TBI affects your daily activities, hobbies, and relationships.
    • Psychological Evaluation: Documentation of emotional distress, such as anxiety, depression, or PTSD.

    While this is a subjective category, getting strong documentation with the help of your attorney can bolster your claim.

    Long-Term Care Needs

    Examples of long-term care needs include:

    • Physical Therapy: Ongoing rehabilitation to regain strength, coordination, and mobility.
    • Occupational Therapy: Rehabilitation to relearn daily living skills and adapt to limitations.
    • Speech Therapy: If a TBI affects your communication skills.
    • Personal Care Assistance: For help with bathing, dressing, and other daily activities.
    • Home Care: For individuals requiring other in-home medical care or assistance.

    If your TBI requires ongoing care, the cost of such care factors significantly into your settlement.

    Liability (Fault) in the Accident

    Oregon follows a modified comparative negligence law, which means you can still recover compensation for your TBI even if you were partially at fault for the accident. However, the amount you receive will be reduced based on your percentage of fault.

    As long as you are 50% or less at fault, you can still collect damages, but your settlement will be decreased by your percentage of fault. For example, if you're found to be 20% at fault for your TBI, and the total settlement amount would have been $1 million, you would receive $800,000.

    Various other considerations include:

    • Age: Younger individuals with TBIs often receive higher settlements due to the potential for a longer lifespan with ongoing impacts.
    • Documentation: Thorough medical records, detailed reports of lost wages, and documented pain and suffering strengthen your claim.
    • Insurance Coverage: The at-fault party's insurance policy limits can affect the maximum settlement amount you can receive.

    Remember that every TBI case is unique, so consulting with a qualified Portland personal injury lawyer is essential. They can assess the specifics of your brain injury case, calculate an accurate potential settlement value, and fight for the compensation you deserve.What Types of Damages Can You Recover in a TBI Lawsuit?

    What Types of Damages Can You Recover in a TBI Lawsuit?

    In a TBI lawsuit, you can potentially recover several types of damages to compensate for the losses you've suffered. These damages can be categorized into two main groups:

    What Types of Damages Can You Recover in a TBI Lawsuit?

    Economic Damages

    Economic damages aim to reimburse you for the out-of-pocket expenses and loss of income caused by your TBI. Common examples include:

    • Medical Expenses: All past and future medical costs, including hospitalization, doctor visits, rehabilitation therapy, medications, durable medical equipment, and any future anticipated care needs.
    • Lost Wages: The income you've lost due to missing work, reduced work hours, or an inability to return to your previous job.
    • Loss of Earning Capacity: If your TBI affects your ability to perform your previous job or limits your career options, a vocational expert can assess your lost future earning potential.
    • Property Damage: If the accident that caused your TBI also damaged your property (car, bicycle, etc.), the cost of repairs or replacement can be included in your claim.

    Remember that you’ll need clear documentation to prove your losses, which your attorney can help you with.

    Non-Economic Damages

    These are intangible losses that are more subjective and difficult to quantify. However, they acknowledge the significant impact a TBI can have on your life beyond just the financial aspects.

    Here are some examples:

    • Pain and Suffering: The physical and emotional pain you've endured due to your TBI.
    • Mental Anguish: The emotional distress caused by your TBI, including anxiety, depression, or PTSD.
    • Loss of Enjoyment of Life: How your TBI has limited your ability to participate in activities you once enjoyed.
    • Loss of Consortium: Your spouse’s loss of companionship, intimacy, and emotional support.

    Consulting with an experienced TBI lawyer can help you understand what damages you may be entitled to and how to build a strong case to maximize your compensation.

    How Do You Prove Traumatic Brain Injury in Oregon?

    Proving a serious traumatic brain injury claim can be challenging because TBIs often lack the clear physical evidence that is present in cases like broken bones or severe lacerations. Here's a breakdown of key strategies for establishing your TBI claim:

    Providing Medical Evidence

    This is the cornerstone of your case. Gather all medical records related to your TBI, including:

    • Initial Emergency Room Reports: Documents showing the cause of the accident and any initial assessments of head injury.
    • Doctor's Notes and Diagnoses: Detailed reports from physicians outlining your symptoms and your treatment plan.
    • Specialist Consultations: Records from neurologists, psychologists, or other specialists who can evaluate cognitive function and potential long-term effects.
    • Imaging Results: CT scans or MRIs — although they might not always show visible damage in mild TBI cases — can support your claim.

    While it can be daunting to track down and compile all this evidence, your attorney can help.

    Demonstrating Evidence of Your Symptoms

    Documenting your TBI symptoms is crucial. To do so, you can provide:

    • Personal Journals: Maintain a daily record of your symptoms, including headaches, dizziness, memory problems, difficulty concentrating, sleep disturbances, mood changes, and any other issues you experience.
    • Third-Party Accounts: Family members, friends, or coworkers can attest to changes in your behavior, cognitive abilities, or emotional state after the accident.

    Do not discount the power of personal testimony — keep careful records of your experiences throughout your experience.

    Establishing Causation

    You need to link your TBI to a specific accident or event. This can be achieved through:

    • Police Reports: This details the accident and contributing factors.
    • Accident Reconstruction Experts: These professionals can analyze the accident and provide an objective opinion on how it caused your TBI.
    • Witness Statements: You can procure statements from anyone who witnessed the accident if they can corroborate the cause of your injury.

    With various ways to show your impairment and how it’s affected your life, your attorney can help you build a strong case for compensation.

    How Newlin Law Offices in Portland Can Help You Maximize Your TBI Settlement in Oregon

    The aftermath of a traumatic brain injury can be overwhelming. Medical bills pile up, you might be unable to work, and the long-term effects of the injury can create uncertainty about your future. In these challenging times, the experienced personal injury lawyer at Newlin Law Offices can be your strongest advocate.

    Here's how our team can significantly assist you in securing a fair and maximized settlement:

    • Assessing and Valuating Your Case: Thorough analysis of medical records, lost wages, pain and suffering documentation, and the overall impact of your injury.
    • Navigating Complex Legal Issues: Clear explanation of legalities, ensuring understanding of rights throughout the process.
    • Evidence Gathering and Case Building: Tireless collection of medical records, police reports, witness statements, and expert opinions.
    • Negotiating with Insurance Companies: Aggressive advocacy to maximize compensation, rejecting lowball settlement offers.
    • Understanding Insurance Coverage Limits: Exploration of all available options to maximize recovery, including underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage.
    • Preparing for Court If Necessary: Professional courtroom representation, with a history of successfully recovering compensation for TBI clients.
    • Providing Emotional Support and Guidance: Compassionate support throughout the process, advocating for your well-being every step of the way.

    Newlin Law Offices brings a wealth of knowledge, experience, and negotiation skills to the table. We are your champion, ensuring you receive a fair settlement that reflects the full impact of your TBI on your life. Contact Newlin Law Offices today for a free consultation, and let us fight for the compensation you deserve.

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