Maryland Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) cases are difficult for lawyers to handle due to the fact that clients who have sustained these injuries generally have difficulty functioning normally. Clients who have sustained brain injuries are in a compromised position and need a large amount legal assistance.
TBIA traumatic brain injury is damage caused by an external physical force that has affected the brain's ability to function. Typically, individuals who have sustained TBIs have problems associated with physical functioning, social skills, and sometimes the ability to think properly. The causes of TBIs are diverse. The top three causes are car accidents, firearms, and falls. Brain injuries are classified as: ? Open head injuries, such as bullet wounds and penetration of the brain through the skull; ? Closed head injuries, such as motor vehicle crashes, falls, and blows to the skull; and ? Deceleration injuries, such as when the brain is slammed back and forth inside the skull. Usually a TBI is obvious to detect, but sometimes the symptoms of TBI are not easily recognizable. Victims of TBI often include males ages 15-24, as well as child abuse victims and the elderly. Maryland has various resources for funding, support, and advocacy, including the Brain Injury Association of Maryland, and the TBI Medicaid Waiver Program.
Economic and Non-Economic DamagesA person who sustained a TBI injury usually has sustained a large economic loss including both past and future medical expenses, lost income, lost future wages and earning capacity, and other financial expenses attributed to the wrongdoer. These damages do not have a cap, or ceiling, in the State of Maryland. The only requirement is that they are substantiated at trial. Non-economic damages include compensation for things like pain and suffering, emotional distress, and the loss of enjoyment of life as a result of the negligence. These damages are more subjective, not easy to quantify, and vary from plaintiff to plaintiff.
Caps in Maryland TBI CasesAt the urging of lobbyists for hospitals and the insurance industry, caps on damages were passed by the Maryland House of Delegates. The Maryland statute placed a $830,000 cap on non-economic damages for injuries and wrongful death cases arising in 2016. The cap increases to $1,245,000 in wrongful death cases if you include the cap on survival actions. If there are two or more claimants in a wrongful death case, the cap increases to $2,075,000. This cap applies to TBI not the result of medical malpractice.
Statute of LimitationsIn Maryland, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases gives you three years from the date of the injury to file your complaint. If you do not comply with the Statute of Limitations deadline your claim will likely be barred and your case disallowed. However, in TBI cases involving minors or incapacitated persons the statute of limitations is tolled until the child reaches the age of majority, or the incompetency ends.