How Physical Impairment Damages Work Under Texas Law.
In our continuing series on damages, we're going to look at how courts examine claims for "physical impairment." Below, we'll discuss how these claims work and how we prove them up in court.
What "physical impairment" claims are designed to do.
After a serious accident, victims are often left without the same abilities they had before. In "less serious" cases, that can mean a victim's inability to play sports or roughhouse with their kids. In the most serious of cases, it can mean a victim's complete disability to be employed, do any work around the house, or even care for themselves.
Each case is different, of course, and therefore must be approached with an eye towards the individual client's injuries and pre-accident lifestyle in order to adequately assess what the victim's provable injuries are. Here are some examples:
- One of our clients was injured in an 18-wheeler accident in the western part of the state. Prior to the incident, he'd been an active outdoorsman enjoying hunting, hiking, and camping. Further, he'd been responsible for doing the chores on his family's large farm. Even two years after the accident, he could no longer engage in these activities. We made a claim specifically for these losses because they were directly attributable to the incident.
- Another client had been injured in an alcohol-related accident near Houston. A local bar had over-served the person who caused the incident, and our client was left in a wheelchair. She could no longer do any of her normal day-to-day tasks, and had to quit her job as a waitress. We filed a dram shop lawsuit for money to pay her lost wages and the future assistance she'd need to take care of herself.
- In a particularly tragic case, on of our client's children suffered blindness after a horrible car accident case. We filed a claim for money to help get her medical attention that (hopefully) could help, as well as all the expenses associated with the costs of her future education and assistance she'll need.
How we prove physical impairment cases to a jury.
With their lives in tatters, many of our clients are shocked and saddened to learn that the perpetrators---and their insurance companies---are routinely unwilling to cover these costs willingly. Rather, they'll make every imaginable "stab in the dark" that YOU were responsible for the accident, AND that your physical defects preexisted the accident. We combat these tactics with a two-pronged approach:
- We prove the accident wasn't your fault: No matter what it takes, we find any legitimate evidence that the other party was at fault for your incident. If that requires hiring the best accident reconstructionists money can buy, getting testimony from dozens of witnesses, or compelling the defendants to turn over all damaging evidence, we'll get to the truth.
- Show the full extent of your injuries: While you may very well know that your body simply isn't the same, it's our job to be able to prove that in court. It starts with us subpoenaing your medical records, consulting with your doctors, and hiring our own medical professionals to assess your condition. Further, we work very hard to prove that---while no one's body is ever perfect---the accident is the direct cause of your injuries, not some preexisting condition.
Importantly, all of this must be done in such a way that a court will not only allow our evidence to come before the jury per the Texas Rules of Evidence, but that also that it is presented persuasively. We want the "heart strings" of the jury to be pulled, and that takes years of experience is mastering the arts of persuasion.
If you or a loved one has been seriously hurt, it's time we talk. Our firm is available 24/7 at (855) 326-0000 to answer any questions you might have and to walk you through the legal process. We'll never charge you for the call, and the only way we ever get paid is by winning. Don't hesitate.
Related Articles for Further Reading:
- Personal Injury Law: Loss of Consortium
- Personal Injury Law: Disfigurement
- Personal Injury Law: Mental Anguish