Burn Injury – Burns are some of the most painful injuries that a person can sustain. They can also be costly to care for and they can take a lot of time to recover from. If you sustained burn injuries, and you feel someone else may be liable for your injuries, you may be able to file a personal injury case to recover money for your lost wages, medical expenses, future medical costs, and permanent disfigurement. However, in order to be able to sue for a burn injury, you need to prove a lot of things and be at a certain stage in your healing process. Here are a few of the elements that should be met or considered prior to suing for a burn you sustained.
Upon Sustaining Medical Injuries
In order for you to file a personal injury suit for burns, you must have sustained medically documented burn injuries. There are different levels of burns, ranging from a level one burn to a level three burn. A level three burn is the most severe and requires the most care. However, you can file a claim for any type of burn. However, you must be able to prove that you sustained injuries. As such, if you were burnt, it is important that you seek medical attention.
Seeking medical attention quickly after a burn is not only important for your case, but it can be important for your recovery process as well. Burns can become infected quickly, so seeking medical treatment helps you to learn how to care for the burn and clean it properly, helping it to heal and helping you to prevent complications that can negatively affect healing time or lead to more problems.
After Establishing Fault or Cause
Another element that must be proven in order to sue for a burn injury is that there is another party who is responsible for your burn. In order for a person or company to be at fault for your injuries, you must show that the other party acted carelessly, recklessly or was unreasonably dangerous, and as a result, it contributed to the burns happening to you. For example, if your friend was playing carelessly with fireworks, and threw one at you, causing your shirt to catch on fire, and thus you to sustain burns, you have a case against them.
Likewise, if you light a stove, and the stove malfunctions and explodes, causing you to be injured, the company who manufactured the stove may have fault for your injuries. In order to bring a lawsuit against a person or company, you need to be able to establish that they were the cause of the accident or series of events that led to your burns and that they have fault for the series of events that led to your burn injuries.
Once the Injuries Have Stabilized
If you are looking to sue for a burn injury, you may be wondering when you can actually file a suit. You, or an attorney, can file a personal injury lawsuit upon determining that injuries sustain and that there is another party responsible for your injuries. However, in order for the case to move forward through the courts, your injuries typically have to stabilize. It can be hard to determine what your medical expenses will be and what your future medical needs will be until your injuries have stabilized.
As such, most cases will remain in the discovery phase until your condition has reached a permanent and stationary status or until your treatment has plateaued. Once this has happened, an attorney will have a good idea as to what your medical expenses to date have been and what your future medical expenses will be, helping to place a value on your case.
Upon Determining What to Sue For
Another element that needs to consider when determining when you can sue for a burn injury is determining what you can sue for. Once your injuries have stabilized, you or an attorney will have a great idea as to what you need to sue for or recover money for. Once your injuries have stabilized, you will know how many weeks of work you have missed due to the injuries, if you can return to the same line of work, if you need to hire maids or lawncare to tend to chores you can no longer accomplish, and what other expenses you may have incurred due to the burn injuries you sustained. Many lawyers wait until you have stabilized, and they know what money you are out in order to negotiate a settlement or push your case through the courts.
Within the Statute of Limitations
The final element that needs to account for when determining when you can sue for a burn injury is the statute of limitations. In the state of Washington, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases and burn cases is typically three years. There are a few exceptions to this, such as when minors involve. However, as a general rule of thumb, three years is the statute. You must file a case before the statute expires, or you lose the right to ever recover any money for the burn injuries you sustained. A lawyer can help you determine when the statute expires on your case.
Burns can be extremely painful, and you can quickly rack up a lot of medical debt due to burns you may have sustained. A Tacoma burn injury lawyer at Strong Law can help you determine if you may be able to file a personal injury case against any parties who may have been responsible for your burn injuries. Personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis, meaning you do not need to pay a lawyer upfront. Instead, they receive a portion of your lawyer. This makes working with one affordable for anyone. If you have sustained burn injuries, reach out to Strong Law today to schedule your free consultation.