Determining the extent of an injury can be important in many cases, especially when it comes to dealing with legal matters, such as after a car accident. Just as the term indicates, a permanent injury is one that will likely last a lifetime. It can include either physical or mental damage, and typically restricts the victim's daily activities and ability to work for the foreseeable future.
It is not necessary to be killed or paralyzed after an accident in order for affected individuals to collect money for damages. A permanent injury includes several types of damage, whether serious or rather mild. As long as it is likely to last for the duration of the victim's life, it is usually possible to receive monetary compensation after damages. The victim's family can also often sue for lasting mental or physical damage if the victim is unable to do so because of the extent of the injury.
Many states allow victims of accidents that result in permanent injury to collect money through two categories. One includes economic damages, and is made up of tangible costs. This can include medical bills, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and even possible future medical bills, as long as it can be proven that the permanent injury will likely necessitate additional treatment. Most states also allow victims of permanent injuries to seek noneconomic damages, such as for inconvenience, loss of consortium, and pain and suffering.
In most cases, the only way to receive compensation for permanent injury because of someone else is to prove that it was caused by negligence. This usually requires the victim to visit the hospital or doctor immediately after the incident, and let the medical professional know that he believes the damage was caused by the at-fault party's negligence. Documentation will be required that shows that permanent injury has resulted from the accident, impacting daily life for the foreseeable future.
The next step is often to consult a lawyer who can help the victim gather the pertinent medical documentation to support a viable argument. Objective proof of the injury is usually required in order to win a court case. Some people who exhibit a preexisting condition prior to the accident may worry that they cannot be properly compensated. In such cases, it can typically be included in the lawsuit as long as the victim can prove that it was made worse as a result of the accident.