Head Injuries & Your Right to Compensation

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Brain injuries can range from mild to severe. Regardless of the severity, the physical, sensory, and cognitive symptoms can be very upsetting. If you or someone you know has sustained a traumatic brain injury due to an assault, slip and fall, auto accident, or sports incident, contact an attorney at Casale & Bonner, P.C. by calling 570-326-7044. We can’t cure a brain injury, but we can help ease the difficulty associated with medical bills and other costs.

Mild & Severe TBIs

A concussion is classified as a “mild” traumatic brain injury (TBI) and is often missed initially. This classification is assigned when a force or impact to the head causes loss of consciousness and/or confusion and disorientation lasts fewer than 30 minutes. Medical imaging may be normal, but the victim may experience headache, difficulty thinking, frustration, memory loss, sleep disturbances, mood changes, and other problems that can last a year or more. While called “mild,” the effects can be very difficult to deal with.

A severe traumatic brain injury may initially present as a mild TBI. In the hours or days following the injury, the victim may exhibit dilation of one or both pupils, clear fluid draining from the nose or ears, weakness, lack of coordination, severe confusion, agitation, and other symptoms.

Causes of TBI

Any blow to the head can cause TBI. The extent of the damage is determined by the nature of the injury and force of the impact. The most common causes of TBI are falls, auto accidents, sports injuries, violence (assault), and combat injuries. Shaken Baby Syndrome also causes head trauma.

Schools can help by ensuring that all students have the latest and safest protective equipment when participating in sports and that coaches strictly enforce rules that prohibit students that show signs of concussion from returning to the field. A study by Boston University showed that 110 of 111 former NFL players showed signs of repeated head trauma and brain damage, even with high-quality protective helmets. Football isn’t the only sport with a high incidence of TBI. Cycling, baseball, basketball, scuba diving, soccer, skiing, and hockey also contribute to the high TBI stats.

Outcomes

People who have sustained traumatic brain injuries may develop seizure disorders, buildup of fluid in the brain that causes brain swelling, infections, damage to blood vessels, ongoing headaches, vertigo, paralysis, altered sense of smell or taste, swallowing problems, hearing loss, inability concentrate, memory loss, outbursts, depression, and more. Research has shown that TBIs can lead to degenerative brain diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and dementia.

Statistics

The Pennsylvania Traumatic Brain Injury Advisory Board has compiled some statistics pertaining to TBI. In a 2015 summary, the Advisory Board reported that over 245,000 people have brain injury-related disabilities in Pennsylvania. Over 2,200 die from brain injuries annually. Nearly 50,000 people are seen in emergency rooms every year following brain injuries. Almost 36,000 Pennsylvania youths of ages 19 and under have sports-related brain injuries every year. Over 8,500 of the victims of TBI have disabilities that are long-term or last throughout their lives.

Your Legal Representatives

If you or someone you love has sustained a traumatic brain injury due to the action or inaction of another person, the lawyers of Casale & Bonner, P.C. will help you file a lawsuit against them. Monetary compensation cannot take away the pain and heartache of TBI, but it may ease the financial burden associated with ongoing medical care. We hope that by holding the person/people responsible for their action/inaction, they will recognize their wrongdoing. This may provide some comfort to victims, knowing that the parties have been held responsible and will, hopefully, act with more caution in the future. Call Casale & Bonner, P.C. at 570-326-7044 for more information.

Don’t Drive Under the Influence

In Pennsylvania, along with the rest of the US, DUI is a very serious crime. The penalties are stiff and the charges will negatively impact your entire life. At Casale & Bonner P.C., we don’t want you to suffer through the consequences if you don’t have to. Step one in staying away from a DUI charge is education.

What is DUI?

DUI, or driving under the influence, is the charge brought against a driver who is impaired by alcohol or drugs — even prescription drugs.

Anatomy of an Arrest

If a police officer sees any behaviors that lead them to believe you may be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, they will pull you over. The first thing they will do is make observations: check if your eyes are bloodshot; listen for slurred speech; smell for alcohol in the care; etc. Typically, they will then ask the driver to exit the vehicle.

Roadside testing may include standing on one leg, walking and turning, and a breath test for alcohol intoxication. If the results of any of these tests give the officer probable cause to believe you are impaired, they will arrest you for DUI. You will be handcuffed and placed in the police vehicle for transportation to the closest place for blood testing. You may receive your Miranda rights at this time.

When you arrive at the local hospital or other blood collection station, you will be asked to submit to a blood alcohol test (BAC). You do not have to give consent, but be aware that in Pennsylvania, you do not have the right to refuse. If you do refuse, there will be consequences including suspension of your driver’s license for at least a year. This year is the result of your refusal, not the DUI charge. If you are found guilty of DUI and receive drivers license suspension time, this will be added to the refusal to take the BAC time. Please be aware that during this time, you do not have a right to a lawyer. You must make this decision on your own, knowing the consequences.

After the test, you will likely be detained and have a right to call Casale & Bonner at 570-326-7044 for legal advice and representation.

Avoiding DUI

The best idea is to avoid driving under the influence altogether. If you are drinking or imbibing in any kind of substance that impairs your ability to safely operate a motor vehicle, don’t get behind the wheel. Ask a friend who has not been drinking to give you a ride. Call a taxi or Uber. Find a way to stay off the road. The best defense is a good offense. Don’t get behind the wheel of a car and you can’t be pulled over.

Contact us with any questions or to retain our services.