If you contact an attorney shortly after an accident involving a traumatic brain injury (TBI), you may find the attorney frustratingly slow to take action.
Don’t be dismayed if your attorney doesn’t seem like he or she is in a rush to begin negotiating a settlement with the insurance company involved. Your attorney is looking out for your interests and it’s very likely that he or she is waiting to see if more problems develop a few months down the road. Research indicates more clearly than ever that the symptoms of a traumatic brain injury may not all be evident at once.
The Institute of Medicine studied brain injuries in Gulf War veterans in order to determine what long-term consequences were faced by the victims of TBIs. Perhaps not surprisingly, they found that TBIs are a chronic health condition — sufferers are likely to experience cognitive defects, depression, mood disorders, personality changes and more long after the injury.
What did surprise researchers, however, were the findings that TBI victims were more likely to experience things like ongoing declines in cognitive function, dementia, Parkinson’s disease, endocrine issues, depression, diabetes and premature death than those without TBIs.
In fact, they found out many of the long-term consequences of TBIs might not even develop until six months or longer after the initial injury. There are also social consequences to a TBI that can become more readily apparent after that time. More than fourteen studies of TBI victims show that there’s a clear relationship between the brain injury and a lower overall quality of living.
A smart attorney who regularly handles TBI injury cases is going to wait until you have had time to go through the initial healing phase and, at the very least, a good six months of recovery to see what problems you may develop. That’s the only way that he or she can begin to quantify your losses and start to negotiate a fair settlement that will help meet your medical and financial needs into the future.
If you’re concerned about why there doesn’t seem to be any movement in your case right now, talk to your attorney. He or she will be glad to explain exactly what the delay is and why it may be better to wait to start settlement negotiations on a brain injury case until more time has passed.
Source: Ohio Valley Center for Brain Injury Prevention and Rehabilitation, “Long-Term Consequences of TBI: A SynapShot from OVC,” accessed May 05, 2017