Severe burns could change a person’s life forever. Injuries could lead to disfigurement, significant nerve damage, and even death. Individuals who survive a burn face increased health risks from infections and other medical issues. The financial burden that goes along with these injuries can also be significant. Thankfully, a compassionate catastrophic injury attorney could help you seek the recovery of monetary damages from the responsible party.
An Altoona burn injury lawyer could review the facts of your case and guide you on the strength of your claim. In the right circumstances, you may have a viable injury claim against the person who caused your burns. Schedule a consultation to discuss your legal options with an attorney.
While the word ‘burn” brings to mind an injury caused by extreme heat, the reality is that burn injuries can result from a multitude of factors, including chemicals and electricity. Regardless of the cause, an Altoona attorney with experience handling burn lawsuits might be able to help you recover compensation for your injuries.
The most common types of burn injuries include:
In addition to the cause of a burn, these injuries also fall into different categories based on their severity. These categories are known as degrees, with first-degree burns carrying the least severe consequences and fourth-degree burns being the most severe.
First-degree burns are the least severe type of burn injury. Also known as superficial burns, these injuries involve redness and swelling and rarely last more than a few days.
Second-degree burns are far more painful than first-degree burns. These burns impact the outer layer of skin as well as several layers underneath and cause redness, pain, and blisters.
Third-degree burns are severe injuries that must be treated immediately. The symptoms include charred or blackened skin and damage to every layer of skin. These injuries often destroy the nerves at the burn site.
Fourth-degree burns are the most dangerous. These burns destroy not only the skin but also the muscles and bones underneath. Some of these burns can result in death.
A severe burn can mean not only severe pain. If the skin has been damaged, a person may have an open wound that could lead to other types of complications, such as an infection. There could be scarring, disfigurement, and even with healing, there may be a permanent mark on the body where the burn occurred. That can have psychological implications in terms of self-esteem if it is on prominent areas of the body such as the head, face, hands, and forearms.
There can also be post-traumatic stress arising from the burn incident if a person comes into contact with a live wire, scalding hot water, or a fire. The person may psychologically continue to relive that incident up to the present day.
There can also be financial challenges, such as a person unable to work in the same capacity. That can significantly alter their long-term financial situation in terms of how they are going to pay their bills and make ends meet. With extensive medical treatments required for recovery, this could result in serious financial burdens.
While a plaintiff may have the right to seek compensation from a defendant who caused their burn injury, special rules apply when the plaintiff was partially at fault. Under 42 Pa. C.S.§ 7102, Pennsylvania has adopted a legal standard known as the modified comparative negligence rule.
Under this rule, a plaintiff may still recover damages if they are partially at fault, so long as their negligence does not surpass that of the defendant.
The statute also provides that a plaintiff’s degree of fault will diminish their recovery in proportion to their percentage of fault. In other words, if a plaintiff is 20 percent responsible for the accident, they can recover 80 percent of their available damages. An experienced burn injury lawyer in Altoona could help injured victims recover the compensation they deserve.
An Altoona burn injury lawyer could be your advocate during your pursuit of damages related to your burn injury. Compassionate legal counsel could work to ease the burden brought on by your burn injuries. To get started with your burn injury case, contact us for a consultation with a personal injury lawyer familiar with burn injuries at Marcus & Mack.