Broken Bones and Fractures
Broken bones and fractures are common but potentially serious injuries that may result from car accidents, dangerous property conditions, and other unexpected events. Fractures are basically cracks in a bone, rather than outright breaks. A closed fracture occurs when there is a clean break that does not damage surrounding tissue or tear the skin. A compound fracture is one that does damage the skin or tissue around the area of the fracture. These are more serious and have a high risk of infection. At Sharifi Firm, our Los Angeles catastrophic injury lawyers can advocate for victims in Los Angeles and elsewhere in Southern California who have been hurt due to the negligence of another person or entity.Pursuing Compensation for Broken Bones and Fractures
In most cases, broken bones and fractures are the result of negligence. If they arise due to someone else's careless conduct, you may be able to recover damages from that person or entity. You probably would need to establish negligence by proving the duty of the defendant towards you, a breach of this duty, causation, and actual damages.
Suppose, for example, that you are in a car accident that causes you to break a leg. This happened because another driver ran a red light and crashed into you in the middle of an intersection. All drivers in California owe a duty to others to use reasonable care while behind the wheel. Running a red light is likely to be seen as a breach of this duty. If running the red light directly caused the accident that resulted in your broken leg, the defendant likely will be found negligent.
California permits defendants to raise a defense of comparative negligence. This means that the defendant can ask the jury to look at whether the victim also was careless. The jury will determine the total damages and assign each party alleged to be at fault a percentage of responsibility. The plaintiff can potentially recover damages minus a portion equal to his or her percentage of fault.
Victims file a personal injury lawsuit in order to seek compensatory damages. Compensation is divided into "general" damages, or non-economic damages, and "special” damages, or economic damages. Special damages include all your documented and tangible costs and losses, such as doctor's bills, hospital bills, lost income, property damage, and out-of-pocket expenses. General damages are intangible damages that the jury believes naturally flow from the type of accident and injury involved. They may include pain and suffering as well as mental anguish. If you suffer multiple compound fractures, for example, your healing period may be particularly prolonged, and a jury might find that you suffered more than if you broke one leg and the break was clean.
Under California Civil Code section 3294, you can potentially recover punitive damages in a personal injury case if you are able to prove by clear and convincing evidence that a defendant engaged in oppression, fraud, or malice. While this is a difficult standard to meet, it may be possible in some cases involving broken bones and fractures, such as a drunk driving case or a case in which someone intentionally assaulted you.Consult a Los Angeles Lawyer to Discuss Your Accident Case
If you have been involved in a car accident or another incident of negligence, our Los Angeles attorneys are ready to hear your story and discuss your options with you. Sharifi Firm also represents injured individuals in Temecula, San Bernardino, Riverside, and Rancho Cucamonga, among other cities. Call us at (866) 422-7222 or contact us via our online form for a free, no-obligation consultation.