Anyone who has been in a fender bender knows what a mess it can cause to your health, finances, and daily life. It can involve dozens of calls to various insurance companies, weeks to get your car repaired, and even minor injuries that take time to heal.
But now imagine you’ve suffered permanent injuries in a Kirkland truck accident that wasn’t your fault. The process of physical, emotional, and financial recovery is heartbreaking and incredibly stressful. What avenues of restitution are available for your damages? The skilled Washington truck accident legal team at Max Meyers Law is ready to help you through the overwhelming process of holding the liable parties responsible.
What Is a Permanent Disability?
It’s any type of injury that has a lasting, lifelong effect. Rarely are you able to fully restore your health as it was prior to the semi-truck crash.
If an injury greatly impacts your well-being, changes your ability to move through the world, or alters all aspects of life you previously enjoyed, it’s a permanent disability. Certain permanent injuries may reduce your ability to pursue a career, enjoy hobbies, care for your family, or independently care for yourself.
Millions of people with disabilities find ways to adapt, flourish, and live happy and fulfilled lives. However, it’s imperative to remember that if your permanent disability was caused by another party’s negligence, they could be responsible for the costs of your condition. You have a right to seek justice and proper compensation.
Why Truck Crashes Can Cause Permanent Disabilities
A commercial truck, usually more than 50 feet long, can weigh up to 80,000 pounds when fully loaded with cargo. Hitting one with your car, even a large SUV, is like smashing into a concrete wall.
Even simple fender-benders that wouldn’t usually cause serious damage can turn fatal if a tractor-trailer is involved. Certain types of truck accidents often cause more severe and permanent injuries than others:
- Head-on truck crashes
- Rollover truck crashes
- T-bone accidents
- Pile-up truck accidents
Types of Permanent Disabilities Caused by Truck Crashes
When your vehicle collides with a truck, your body experiences blunt force trauma by coming into contact with parts of your own vehicle, parts of the truck, or in some cases, objects outside of the colliding vehicles, like the road. This impact breaks bones, tears flesh, and harms vital organs, such as the brain, spinal cord, and heart.
Common medical conditions people suffer in large truck and tractor-trailer accidents include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Sensory issues, like blindness or deafness
- Nerve damage
- Complete or partial limb amputation
- Back and neck injuries
- Severe burns
- Psychological trauma
Permanent Disability Damages After a Kirkland Truck Accident
There are astronomical costs associated with catastrophic permanent disabilities. Your compensation claim needs to include not only the immediate recovery costs, but also long-term care, potential lost wages, and more. Here are some key economic damages a knowledgeable truck accident attorney will evaluate when preparing your case.
Everything from the ambulance ride to the hospital to initial care, diagnostic tests, and surgeries should be paid for by the insurer for the at-fault party, whether it’s the large truck driver, the transportation company, or another entity.
Future medical bills
In addition, the settlement should factor in rehabilitation costs, ongoing care, and follow-up surgeries.
Many people who live with permanent injuries from truck crashes require regular medication for pain, trauma, or organ issues. Some may also take medication for PTSD, depression, or anxiety.
Individuals with the most serious permanent disabilities—such as spinal cord damage and paralysis—may need part-time or full-time nursing care to attend to daily tasks like brushing their teeth, making a meal, or bathing. This care could last until the end of their life.
Home alterations and accommodations
Many permanent injuries require special accessories or living arrangements. For example, a person who uses a wheelchair after a truck accident will now require a ramp, bars in the bathroom, large door frames, and other home alterations. They’ll also need special supplies and accommodations for the rest of their life.
Lost wages and loss of earning potential
Sometimes when a person’s health suddenly changes, they lose the ability to continue their career. Not only do they lose wages for every day they can’t work while recovering from their injuries, but they also lose future earning potential. A permanent disability damages claim after a truck accident should take into account the victim’s lost wages and future earnings as well as any re-training or schooling necessary to return to the workforce.
The Hidden Costs Of Permanent Disability
It’s critical to your wellbeing to choose a truck accident attorney you can trust to evaluate these essential non-economic damages in your case.
Pain and suffering
It’s easy to know how much a wheelchair costs, but it’s harder to put a price tag on the pain of having your legs crushed in an accident or the suffering you endure if you can no longer care for yourself independently. The legal system has specific ways of calculating an injury survivor’s pain and suffering so they may be compensated for it.
The consequences that a devastating accident and permanent injury can have on your mental health can be equally as dire as physical injuries. Survivors can suffer from anxiety, depression, OCD, and PTSD after their large truck crash, and these issues may last a lifetime. They may also require therapy, in-patient care, and medication.
Loss of marital relationship
In some cases, a physical disability might mean that you can no longer enjoy a sexual relationship with your partner. This type of loss is hard to put a numerical value on.
Loss of quality and enjoyment of life
Having a permanent disability might limit life experiences you can engage in, from playing baseball in the backyard with your child or hiking a mountain. More importantly, it might compromise your independence, such as being able to feed yourself or go to the restroom alone.A permanent injury drastically changes the trajectory and ease of your entire life. If you were hurt in a commercial vehicle accident that wasn’t your fault, we encourage you to review our settlements and verdicts to understand how we’ll assign value to your case and work diligently to secure the justice you deserve.