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Burn Injury Lawyer
Experiencing a burn injury can be incredibly painful and traumatic. If serious enough, this type of injury can result in long-lasting effects, impacting every facet of your life.
Each year, as many as 10,000 people die from burn-related injuries in the United States. Around 1.1 million burn injuries need some type of medical treatment.
Whether it's from a fire accident, a faulty product, or some other source, if your injury resulted from another party's negligence, you may have a case for a burn injury claim. An experienced burn injury lawyer can help you navigate through the legal process. They'll evaluate your case and develop a strategy that best suits your needs.
Common Causes of Burn Injuries
The sources of burn injuries can be summed up into four kinds:
- Thermal: These are burns that occur from contact with an external heat source. Anything that is 'hot' would be considered a heat source, including fire, steam, scalding liquid, or other hot items.
- Radiation: Radiation burns are caused by exposure to UV-rays, X-rays, or other sources of radiation. The most prevalent radiation burns result from overexposure to the sun's UV-rays. While the effects of thermal burns can happen almost immediately after contact with a hot object, radiation burns can take days or even weeks to notice.
- Chemical: Contact with a corrosive substance, acids, or solvents can result in a chemical burn. Abuse of common household items like cleaning or cosmetic solutions is a prevalent cause of chemical burns. Another common cause is handling corrosive chemicals at the workplace, particularly in an industrial setting.
- Electrical: When electricity comes in contact with your skin, it can result in an electric burn. This can happen when a person touches exposed wiring from an appliance, children biting on electrical cords, or not turning off the power source when making repairs. The injury can be a superficial skin burn or major enough to damage tissues and organs.
Other sources of burn can also include a freeze burn (i.e., frostbite) or friction burn (i.e., rough objects rubbing against your skin).
Types of Burns
Medical professionals categorize burns based on the degree of severity. The higher the degree of the burn, the more severe it is.
A first-degree burn is a superficial burn that affects the top layer of your skin. Symptoms can include redness of skin, itching, pain, and swelling. After a day or two, you may even see skin peeling in the burn spot.
Because the pain is typically minor, it might not require medical treatment. To help reduce the pain and swelling, treat your wound with a cool compress for a few minutes. If the pain gets worse in a few days or there are signs of infection, get medical attention from a doctor.
Second-degree burns are more serious than first-degree burns as it affects the top two layers of your skin. This type of burn can occur from intense sunburn, exposure to fire, or contact with boiling water. Symptoms on the damaged area vary from blisters and moisture to discoloration and extreme pain.
While some second-degree burns can be minor, other times, they can be serious and even life-threatening. Recovery times can also be longer, taking several weeks to fully recover.
Also referred to as full-thickness burns, this type of burn damages the top two layers and the fat tissues under the skin. Your skin can appear charred and look white, brown, or black. It also might have a dry, leathery texture.
Third-degree burns need immediate treatment from a doctor. Considerable treatment, such as skin grafts and surgery, is usually required.
An extreme type of burn that destroys the top layers of your skin, tissues, nerves, and possibly also muscles. It might look charred in appearance, and bone may also be exposed. You also won't feel pain as nerves are most likely damaged now.
A fourth-degree burn is a medical emergency and requires a trip to the emergency room. The longer you wait for care, the more severe the consequences can be, including amputation or even fatality.
Compensation for Burn Injuries
Victims might be entitled to different kinds of compensation for their burn or fire injuries. These include:
- Economic Damages: These kinds of damages have a hard dollar value attached to them and are fairly easy to calculate. Economic damages can include your past and future treatment costs, lost income, childcare or home care services, or property damages.
- Non-Economic Damages: A burn injury can have long-lasting effects that are not easily quantifiable. This includes suffering from emotional distress, pain and suffering, scarring or disfigurement, loss of companionship, or a general reduction in your quality of life.
- Punitive Damages: If the negligent party acted intentionally or recklessly, leading to serious damages, courts could award victims with punitive damages. The objective of punitive damages is to punish the defendant for egregious conduct.
Depending on the burn's severity, a burn injury victim can sustain both economic and non-economic damages. While compensation for damages like medical bills or lost wages is easy to determine, compensation for trauma or pain and suffering can be complicated to calculate.
Consulting with a burn injury attorney will give you the best chance of receiving the compensation you deserve. Whether your burn is from a product, a car accident, or chemical exposure, a burn or fire lawyer will assess your situation and help you determine your total amount of damages.
Who is Liable for Burn Injuries?
The kinds and amount of compensation you receive will depend mainly on who is liable for your burn injury incident. Possible parties who could be liable for your burn injuries include:
- Manufacturer of a faulty product
- A company or employer in which the burn injury took place on their property
- Another negligent person causing the burn injury
- Yourself-- accidentally causing the injury
A burn victim can file a claim by demonstrating another party's negligence. This means confirming four components:
- The defendant owed the injured victim a duty of care
- The defendant breached that duty
- The breach resulted in the burn injuries
- The injured victim sustained damages
The success of getting the entire compensation for your damages will depend on the burn victim developing these four components. While basic in idea, crafting a compelling case to prove the other party was negligent is not always easy nor simple. Therefore, it is essential to have an experienced burn lawyer represent you.
Let Dunk Law Firm Help
Dunk Law Firm is a personal injury firm that represents victims injured as a result of someone else's negligence. If you are experiencing a burn injury because of negligence or a fire, our lawyers can help. We provide a free, no-obligation consultation to review your claim. Our experienced personal injury attorneys will help you maneuver every step of your case. We provide caring yet assertive representation to guarantee our clients receive the compensation they are entitled to.
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