Loss of Limb or Amputation Injury Lawyer in California
The loss of a limb is a traumatic event. Amputation injuries are both physically and emotionally painful, and financially costly. If you or a loved one have experienced an amputation injury you’re not alone. The Irvine personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates have represented victims who’ve experienced amputation injuries, or the loss of a limb.
Monetary compensation can go a long way to help the recovery process of people with amputation injuries. If you believe you’ve been the victim of an amputation injury due to the negligence of others, it is important to call an experienced Irvine personal injury lawyer to help you recover damages.
Contact the Law Offices of Samer Habbas today to better understand your legal options, or continue reading to learn more about the rights of amputation injury victims. With multiple offices located in Irvine, Los Angeles, El Segundo, San Diego and Riverside, our lawyers represent amputee victims across Southern California. To schedule a free consultation with one of our accident attorneys, call 949-727-9300.
What Exactly Is an Amputation Injury?
Before getting into your legal rights, it’s important to understand what’s considered an amputation injury.
Amputation means the traumatic loss of a limb or other external body part. That body part could be a limb or appendage that’s been cut off, completely severed, or partially severed.
It’s common for amputation injuries to involve the loss of a finger, toe, arm, or leg. Not all body parts count as the legal definition of an amputation. Amputations don’t include: avulsions (pulled limbs), severed ears, or broken or chipped teeth.
There are two main kinds of amputation: complete amputation, and partial.
A complete amputation is when a limb or appendage is completely severed. In some cases, the severed limb can be reattached with proper care.
A partial amputation is also a severing of the limb, but some connective tissue remains. Depending on the severity of the injury the limb may be reattached.
What Can Cause a Loss of Limb or Amputation Injury?
Most amputations in the United States occur due to vascular diseases, such as diabetes. But accidents are also a common cause of amputation injuries or loss of limbs.
The specific cause of your amputation injury can help determine who is liable, and what compensation you may be entitled to. Below are some of the most common causes of amputation injuries in California.
Motor Vehicle Amputation Injuries
Auto accidents are one of the biggest contributors to amputation injuries. This includes amputation injuries experienced by drivers and pedestrians. Often these accidents are caused by the negligence of drivers on the road.
When someone is driving while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs, also known as a DUI, their ability to drive is severely impaired. It’s highly likely they will cause an accident. In some cases, these accidents cause the loss of a limb.
But there’s more to negligent driving than driving under the influence. Drivers who are inattentive or speeding can also easily cause accidents. Any situation that involves a vehicle striking a pedestrian, or someone losing control of the vehicle, could also potentially cause an amputation injury.
Heavy Machinery and Workplace Amputation Injuries
Another leading cause of amputation injuries is the unsafe use of heavy machinery. These amputation injuries can occur from work accidents when heavy machinery is misused or unguarded.
According to OSHA the types of heavy machinery that commonly cause loss of limbs include:
- Degloving injuries
- Trash compactors
- Powered and non-powered hand tools
- Inadequately safeguarded power presses
- Power press brakes
- Powered and non-powered converses
- Printing presses
- Rollbending machines
- Food slicers
- and more
If you’ve been the victim of an amputation injury involving heavy machinery at your workplace, you should know your rights. Employers should be safeguarding equipment that poses the risk of amputation.
According to OSHA “workers have a right to working conditions that do not pose a risk of serious harm.” If you’ve experienced an amputation injury due to unsafe work conditions you may be entitled to monetary compensation.
Agricultural Amputation Injuries (Including Lawnmowers)
Machinery used in agricultural work is also a leading cause of amputation injuries. This includes lawnmowers. Amputations injuries are easily caused by accidents that expose people to a lawnmower’s blades.
Often the victims are children riding on lawnmowers or people who came into contact with the blades after going over wet or uneven ground. In other cases, defective equipment may be the cause of an amputation injury.
Medical Malpractice Amputation Injuries
Some surgical procedures require the amputation of a limb, like some infections or tumors. But amputation isn’t always the best treatment for a patient.
There are cases where amputation is performed unnecessarily. In other cases, medical professionals may perform surgery on the wrong limb or cause damages to a limb during surgery.
All of the above are examples of medical malpractice, provided the medical professional didn’t meet the standards of care required. The malpractice of a medical professional may make them liable for amputation injuries.
Life After An Amputation Injury
Life after the loss of a limb is radically different. An amputation injury affects every aspect of someone’s life. Mobility, occupation, and relationships are just a few key aspects of life that can be drastically transformed by an amputation injury.
During this adjustment, emotional and physical pain are also common. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Samer Habbas know how devastating the loss of a limb can be. That’s why they’re always looking to help the victims of these injuries know their rights.
Any victim of an amputation injury that was caused by the negligence of others is entitled to monetary compensation. This doesn’t just ensure justice, it also helps with the many costly medical expenses of an amputation injury.
The Costs of Amputation Injuries
According to a study published by the US National Library of Medicine, the lifetime costs of an amputation patient is $509,275. With $91,105 incurred in the first 2 years after the amputation injury.
Amputation injuries usually require surgery, whether the amputation was partial or complete. The costs of surgery can be very expensive. Additional ongoing treatments after surgery like physical therapy are also common and can be costly too.
This study just took into account the medical expenses associated with amputation. Other expenses such as vehicular upgrades or other lifestyle changes to accommodate the injury were not included.
Prosthetic limbs can also be another significant cost for people who’ve experienced an amputation injury. The initial costs and any ongoing maintenance of prosthetics could contribute to the overall cost of the injury.
The loss of income due to someone’s inability to work after their injury must also be taken into account. This doesn’t just include their recovery time. In many cases, someone’s ability to work is severely impacted by the loss of a limb.
Getting Compensation For an Amputation Injury
The cost of amputation can put a heavy financial burden on accident victims – not to mention the physical and emotional pain experienced from such a traumatic event.
How much compensation an accident victim may be entitled to depend on multiple factors.
- Medical expenses for immediate and long term treatment
- loss of the ability to work and earning potential
- pain and suffering experienced
If your amputation injury was due to the negligence of another person or organization then they should be held accountable.
It’s important to know that in California the statute of limitations limits how long you’re able to pursue a claim for your amputation injury. You only have 2 years after your accident to file a claim, and in some cases even less.
This means if you don’t make a formal request to hold those responsible for your amputation injury accountable, you may not be compensated at all.
In fact, if a government employee or organization is responsible, you may only have 6 months to take legal action for your amputation injury.
Going through a traumatic injury is difficult, but it’s important to work with an attorney soon to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.
Working With An Experienced Amputation Injury Lawyer in California
The injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates specialize in amputation and loss of limb injuries. They know the proper steps to pursue your legal rights, and how to assess your specific case. Combined they all have decades of experience helping people take legal action for their injuries, and are available to answer any questions you might have.
- Who is liable for my injury?
- How much money am I entitled to?
- What if I might be responsible for my injury?
They can quickly help you understand your rights, and offer crucial legal advice. If you or a loved one has experienced an amputation injury caused by the negligence of others, you may be entitled to monetary compensation.
Consulting with an experienced accident attorney is the best way to understand your rights and what you’re entitled to. The Law Offices of Samer Habbas can help. With multiple offices located in Irvine, Los Angeles, El Segundo, San Diego and Riverside, our lawyers represent amputee victims across Southern California.
For more information or to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Irvine amputation attorney, please call 949-727-9300.