In transport accidents, serious injuries can occur. These injuries could lead to a compensation claim being made.
The government introduced reforms on 31 May 2021 which allow RTA injury claims valued at less than PS5,000 to be settled through the Official Injury Claim (OIC) service.
The OIC service allows claimants without legal representation to make and settle their claims online.
Traumatic Brain Injury
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurs when a sudden blow or jolt causes the head to hit against the inside of the skull. It can cause severe symptoms such as memory problems, difficulty identifying objects or people, and changes in personality. TBIs are one of the most common causes of disability, hospital visits and death in the United States.
The most common types of TBI are closed and non-penetrating. Closed TBIs are often called closed head injuries or blunt trauma and most TBIs that occur in the US are of this type. A penetrating TBI, however, happens when an object enters the skull and damages brain tissue directly. This is most commonly caused by firearm injuries and explosions, but can also happen in motor vehicle crashes or sports accidents.
Another common TBI is diffuse axonal injury, which describes widespread damage to white matter bundles that carry electrical impulses and connect different parts of the brain. DAI commonly happens in car accidents, but can be caused by falls, sports injuries and other impacts to the head.
Symptoms of TBI may begin immediately or develop over time. People with severe TBIs often spend extended periods in the hospital or rehabilitation center. They are treated by multidisciplinary teams of health care providers, including neurologists, nurses, psychologists and nutritionists as well as physical, occupational, speech and emotional therapists. Following the initial hospital period, people with TBIs usually undergo rehabilitation and a range of therapies at home or in a community setting to help them live their life to its fullest.
Spinal Cord Injury
A traumatic injury to the spinal cord interrupts the pathway of nerves that carries messages back and forth between your brain and all parts of your body. The spinal cord runs through your neck and back, protected by a column of bony rings called vertebrae. When these are fractured or crushed during an accident, the spinal cord can be damaged.
Depending on the severity of the injury, a spinal cord injury can result in loss of movement and sensation (paralysis) below the point of the trauma. It will also affect your bowel and bladder functions and sexual function. If your spinal cord is injured in the chest (thoracic) or lower back area (lumbar), it will impact the movements of your arms and legs and your ability to breathe. This outcome is known as paraplegia. If the spinal cord is injured at a higher level in the neck (cervical), it can lead to tetraplegia, which is the loss of movement and feeling in both arms and legs.
Spinal cord injuries are the most serious form of RTA injury and, according to the Judicial College Guidelines, are valued at about the same as a severe brain injury. It is important not to move a person with a spinal cord injury as this can worsen the damage.
While some people may think broken bones are not worth making a claim for, they can be severe and lead to lasting pain. It is common for victims of car crashes to experience broken bones due to the force of impact and the way in which their limbs are jolted or jammed against the steering wheel, brake pedal, windshield or floor of a vehicle.
Regardless of the severity of your injury, it is still important to seek medical attention immediately if you have been injured in an accident. This ensures that any broken bone is treated properly and doesn’t worsen over time. It is also crucial to get a medical examination so that any injuries are documented and recorded.
Different accidents can cause broken bones, from sports accidents to workplace incidents and even holiday injuries like tripping over luggage in a hotel foyer. As long as the accident was someone else’s fault, you could be eligible for compensation to cover your medical bills and financial impacts like hiring a carer or loss of income.
Compensation amounts for broken bones will be assessed on a case-by-case basis depending on the severity of your injuries and what impact they have had on you. Compensation can include general damages for the pain and suffering you have experienced, as well as special damages to recover financial losses. Your solicitor will work closely with your doctor to assess the impact of your injuries and determine a suitable compensation amount.
Approximately 1.5 to 2 million people suffer head injuries each year in the United States. These can range from minor concussions to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). TBI happens when a blow or jolt to the head causes a collision between the skull and brain tissue, which results in bruising, bleeding, tearing of nerve fibers, and damage to blood vessels.
These types of injuries may cause long-term symptoms such as headaches, dizziness and trouble with balance. Some of the more serious effects include loss of memory and difficulty thinking. It can also affect a person’s emotions, personality and behaviour.
When it comes to compensation for a head injury, the amount of damages awarded depends on the severity and extent of a person’s injury. This includes general damages for pain and suffering and other psychological damage, as well as special damages for a variety of financial costs, losses and expenses.
A claim for a head injury will usually be subject to the Limitation Act 1980 time limit, which is 3 years from the date of your accident or when you became aware of the damage. However, it’s possible to apply for an extension on these claims to give you more time, especially if you were under the age of 18 at the time of the RTA and could not claim until now.