I suffered a burn injury. Can I sue?
If another person’s negligent act or a defective product caused you to experience a serious burn injury, you have the right to bring suit against the responsible party. Burns can stem from chemicals, product failures, scalds, electrical fires…virtually any scenario in which you are injured due to the carelessness of someone else could form the basis of a claim.
Do I need to hire an attorney?
This depends on many factors, including the nature of your injury, the extent of your injury, the type of claim you wish to bring, and the statutes of limitations in your locale. Facts particular to your case will apply. Your attorney may retain experts in order to prove liability and damage, even if your burn injury is obvious to the eye. The attorney’s job is to demonstrate that a negligent act caused your injury. Your best bet is to call a knowledgeable, experienced burn injury attorney to get the answers that apply to your situation.
What if I am partially at fault for my injury?
Generally speaking, if your fault is less than or equal to the fault of the individual you wish to sue, you may make the claim. Depending on laws in your area, the type and amount of damages you can recover vary, and the percentage of fault you contributed may also come into play.
For which types of damages can I sue?
Some types of damages you may be able to recover include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Lost past income and future earning capacity
- Compensation for current or future pain, disability and disfigurement
- Punitive damages in appropriate cases
- Loss of spousal support, love, companionship (“loss of consortium”)
- Costs related to job retraining
Are other types of financial assistance available to me?
Burn injury victims may get additional financial help through workers’ compensation and health insurance.
If your burn injury happened at work, you should know that workers’ compensation laws usually hold the employer responsible for all work-related injuries, even if the employer is not at fault or did not act negligently. Therefore, although you may not qualify to sue your employer for your burn injury, you may be able to recover some monies via workers’ compensation, although amounts tend to be smaller. As well, depending on the circumstances of your injury, you may be able to sue other responsible parties.
Health insurance often covers the majority of medical costs and treatments, but typically will not cover items such as lost wages, pain and suffering, loss of consortium and so forth.
Consult with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney to learn more about your rights.