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Burn injuries can be some of the most painful, debilitating, and emotionally traumatic experiences a person can face. Victims may be entitled to compensation through a personal injury claim when these injuries occur due to someone else’s negligence. However, evaluating the value of a burn injury claim can be complex, as numerous factors must be considered.

Types of Burn Injuries

Burn injuries are classified by their severity and the depth of tissue damage:

  • First-degree burns—These burns affect only the outer layer of skin (epidermis) and cause redness, swelling, and pain. They typically heal within a week without scarring.
  • Second-degree burns — These burns damage the epidermis and the second layer of skin (dermis), causing blisters, severe pain, and possible scarring. They may take weeks to heal and often require medical treatment.
  • Third-degree burns — These burns destroy both the epidermis and dermis, extending into the subcutaneous tissue. The skin may appear white, black, or charred, and the victim may experience little to no pain due to nerve damage. Third-degree burns often require extensive medical treatment, including skin grafts and surgery.

Factors Considered in Burn Injury Compensation Claims

When evaluating a burn injury compensation claim, several key factors are taken into account:

Severity of the Burn

The severity and extent of the burn injury play a significant role in determining the value of a compensation claim. More severe burns, such as third-degree burns, typically result in higher compensation due to the extensive medical treatment required and the long-term impact on the victim’s life.

Medical Expenses

  • Burn injury victims may face substantial medical expenses, including:
  • Emergency room treatment
  • Hospitalization
  • Surgery, including skin grafts
  • Pain management
  • Physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • Prescription medications
  • Ongoing medical care

These expenses are a crucial component of a burn injury compensation claim, and victims should keep detailed records of all medical bills and treatment-related costs.

Lost Wages and Future Earning Capacity

Burn injuries can cause victims to miss significant time from work or even render them unable to return to their previous occupation. Compensation claims may include lost wages and, in cases of permanent disability, loss of future earning capacity.

Pain and Suffering

Burn injuries can cause immense physical pain and emotional suffering, which may be compensable in a personal injury claim. Factors that may impact the value of pain and suffering damages include:

  • The severity and duration of pain
  • Emotional distress, such as anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Disfigurement and scarring
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

Calculating pain and suffering damages can be complicated, and experienced personal injury attorneys often use their knowledge of past cases and settlement values to determine an appropriate amount.

Fault and Liability

To receive compensation, the burn injury victim must demonstrate that another party’s negligence caused their injuries. This may involve proving fault in cases involving:

The strength of evidence supporting the other party’s liability can significantly impact the value of a burn injury compensation claim.

The Role of a Personal Injury Attorney

Navigating the complexities of a burn injury compensation claim can be overwhelming, especially while focusing on recovery. An experienced personal injury attorney can help burn injury victims by investigating how the injury occurred, gathering evidence to support the claim, calculating damages, negotiating with insurance companies, and representing their clients in court if a settlement cannot be reached.

Contact the Experienced Attorneys at Pringle & Herigstad, P.C.

If you or a loved one has suffered a burn injury due to someone else’s negligence, don’t hesitate to seek legal guidance. The dedicated team at Pringle & Herigstad, P.C. is here to support you through this challenging time and will work tirelessly to protect your rights. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and learn how we can help you pursue the compensation you need to move forward.