Professional legal advice from experienced Brain Injury specialists
When medical negligence leads to brain injury, the consequences can be severe. Making a medical negligence claim for brain injury can greatly improve your quality of life and make access to necessary equipment easier. Switalskis are experienced in cases involving adults, babies, children and young people.
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What is a Clinical Brain Injury?
There are various types of injuries that can occur to the head and have different effects including, but not limited to, physical, mental and hormonal repercussions.
Closed Head Injuries
Closed head injuries are those which do not break the skull, but the force of an impact causes the brain to be accelerated, decelerated, or rotated very quickly. This kind of impact can damage the temporal lobe or the frontal lobe, which are some of the most important sections of the brain. The temporal lobe is responsible for much of hearing, speech, vision and long-term memory functions. The frontal lobe, among other parts, is the section of the brain responsible for decision-making and higher mental functions. Once the brain starts to swell inside of the skull, circulation can be compromised and ultimately be fatal. If this is the case, the brain swelling must be closely monitored.
Penetrating Brain Injuries
Unlike closed head injuries, penetrating brain injuries are when an impact actually fractures the skull or skin. The cause of the impact or a piece of bone may directly enter the brain. This type of brain injury causes a greater risk of epilepsy than other types.
Subarachnoid Haemorrhages are when there is uncontrollable bleeding in between layers of the brain. The condition affects 6 to 12 people in every 100,000. Characteristic symptoms include a severe, sudden-onset headache, which is unusual for the patient and which may be accompanied by vomiting and loss of consciousness, or by neck stiffness. The severity of the symptoms may depend on the extent of the bleeding. However, doctors should always consider subarachnoid haemorrhage in cases where patients present with these symptoms. Such cases require further investigation, or referral to a more senior or specialist practitioner. Delayed diagnosis could lead to serious consequences and could be fatal.
When can I make a compensation claim for Clinical Brain Injury?
In most cases, claims need to be made within three years from when you either suffered negligent care, or three years from when you first discovered you had an injury or condition. However, this time restriction can vary depending on the circumstances of your case. For example, when making a claim for a child, the three year time restriction begins after the child turn 18 years old. Likewise, someone who lacks mental capacity and cannot make a claim on their own may also be exempt from the restriction.
We recognise that such injuries can be extremely distressing for all concerned, but we recommend that you contact us as soon as you feel able to do so. We will work with you to establish the facts and can help you determine whether or not there are sufficient grounds for a claim. If appropriate we can then handle the claim on your behalf including contacting the hospital or professionals responsible to explore the processes that they followed.
Our Medical Negligence Specialists
How are Clinical Brain Injury claims funded?
There are various options for funding claims. Many of our cases are funded using Conditional Fee Agreements, (also called a ‘No Win No Fee’ agreement). In a Conditional Fee Agreement, you will only pay for our solicitors’ work if we win the case for you. In very limited cases we can offer advice for free thanks to Legal Aid funding. Our solicitors can review and discuss your funding options and help you decide the best route to take.
How can Switalskis help me?
A brain injury can easily have life-changing effects or even be fatal. We have a strong track record of handling such complex cases and in particular for securing vital interim payments. These payments will help fund the specialist treatment and rehabilitation that will be needed, without having to wait until the conclusion of your case. Our medical negligence team includes lawyers highly regarded both by clients and within the industry. Suzanne Munroe, who leads our team, is a nationally recognised practitioner specialising in highly complex litigation claims including brain injuries.
It will typically fall to family members to take legal action on behalf of the patient, whose ongoing needs could be extremely complex. Thanks to our experienced Court of Protection team, we can also provide specialist advice on the health, welfare and financial matters of clients if they lack the mental capacity to make their own decisions. This can all be achieved without needing to involve another firm of solicitors.