Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyers For Burn Injuries
Catastrophic injuries make the recovery process after an accident extremely difficult. If you have been injured due to another negligent party’s actions, you will be not only dealing with the insurance company but also trying to get proper medical treatment.
Burn injuries often require extensive medical treatment, both at the time of the injury and in the long term. At Hilley & Frieder, P.C., our Atlanta burn injury lawyers believe that you should focus on your recovery. You can concentrate on your well-being while they work on maximizing your benefits and compensation for your claim.
Why Choose Our Burn Injury Lawyers?
When you work with our law firm, you have the benefit of knowing that a team of experienced personal injury lawyers in Atlanta will be handling your case from start to finish. Our attorneys are a husband and wife team that has more than 50 combined years of legal experience. Personalized legal services, aggressive advocacy and commitment are pinnacles of our firm. You can set your expectations high when you work with our lawyers.
What Is A Burn Injury?
A burn injury is characterized by damage to the skin or deeper tissues, such as the tendons and muscles, that was caused by contact with a dangerous object or element, such as heat or a harsh chemical. It is a painful wound that comes with a high risk of complications, such as infections and permanent scars. Suffering a severe burn injury is physically and emotionally traumatic for an accident victim, and they have the right to seek justice and financial recovery from one or more at-fault parties in Atlanta.
Types Of Burn Injuries
There are different types of burn injuries based on what caused the damage to the skin and other tissues. It is important for a doctor to identify the type of burn injury, as this will determine the appropriate medical treatment for the patient. An electrical burn, for example, must be treated differently than a thermal burn, as electricity may have passed through the victim’s body and caused internal injuries in addition to visible tissue damage.
There are five main types of burn injuries:
- Thermal burns: Heat, fire, hot liquids or steam
- Chemical burns: Acidic, base or caustic chemicals
- Electrical burns: Electricity, such as a live power line
- Radiation burns: Sources of radiation, such as X-rays or the sun
- Friction burns: Blunt trauma and heat exacerbated by high speed
Thermal burns are the most common type of burn injury diagnosed after traumatic accidents, such as car crashes and explosions. All types of burns, however, can be suffered in a variety of settings, such as the workplace, and unsafe premises or right at home. No matter what type of burn injury you suffered in Atlanta, you may qualify for financial compensation if one or more parties had the power to prevent the injury.
Burn Injury Degrees
Once a physician has identified the type of burn injury, they will further inform the patient’s treatment plan by classifying the degree of the burn. Degrees are determined based on the severity of the burn and its thickness or how deeply it has penetrated the skin and underlying tissues. Although some charts classify burn injuries into six different degrees, the four-degree system is the most common. Here are the four basic classifications of a burn injury in order from least severe to most severe:
- First-degree burns: A first-degree burn is superficial, meaning that it does not go deeper than the first layer of skin. It will turn the skin red but will not create blisters or an open wound. Most first-degree burns heal on their own within about a week.
- Second-degree burns: A second-degree burn causes partial-thickness skin damage, meaning that it extends to the second layer of skin (the epidermis and the dermis). It causes blistering, and the skin may appear white or red.
- Third-degree burns: A third-degree burn is a full-thickness injury that causes extensive skin damage. The skin will appear white, yellow or brown and leathery, and the victim may not feel pain due to the destruction of nerves in the area. These injuries often require surgery and skin grafts.
- Fourth-degree burns: A fourth-degree burn shows many of the same signs as a third-degree burn, but the damage extends down into the muscles, soft tissues, joints and bones. These injuries often require multiple surgeries and can be fatal for a victim.
Second-degree to fourth-degree burns always demand professional medical care. It is also important to see a doctor for a first-degree burn that is in a sensitive location, such as the face or the crease of a joint, or one that is more than three inches in diameter. A burn injury specialist will provide a patient with IV fluids, antibiotics, wound debridement and other treatments to help prevent infections and other common burn injury complications.
What Are The Long-Term Effects Of A Burn Injury?
Burn injuries often cause more than just short-term tissue damage. A victim cannot always make a full recovery after being burned, especially with a severe burn. A major burn injury can result in an impaired health status for the victim even many years after the incident. While treatments such as surgeries, therapies, medications and rehabilitation can help a burn injury survivor heal, many experience long-term effects, such as:
- Issues related to scarring and contracture (skin tightness and shortening)
- Chronic pain, itching or discomfort in the affected area
- Problems with thermoregulation (body temperature regulation)
- Trouble sleeping (insomnia)
- Issues adjusting to permanent physical scars or disfigurement
- Feelings of low self-worth or self-image problems
- Psychological trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- General quality of life issues
Burn injuries can have physical, mental, emotional and psychosocial effects on survivors. Many victims report impaired health and reduced well-being after suffering burn injuries. With social support, counseling and advanced medical treatments, however, burn injury victims can often achieve improved levels of recovery.
Common Causes Of Burn Injuries
Most people know that burn injuries can be caused by fires, such as accidental structural fires, explosions or fireworks. Burn injuries are more complex than most people realize, however, and can be caused by a variety of other types of accidents and incidents in Atlanta as well. Common examples are:
- Automobile accidents
- Construction accidents
- Dangerous premises accidents
- Defective product incidents
- Motorcycle wrecks
- Movie set disasters
- Physical abuse or neglect
- Railroad accidents
- Toxic exposure
- Truck accidents
- Workplace accidents
All these accidents are typically preventable. If a driver, employer, property owner, product manufacturing company or another party caused or reasonably should have prevented your burn injury, you may qualify for financial compensation through a civil lawsuit. The lawyers at Hilley & Frieder, P.C., can handle all these types of accident cases and more.
Auto Accidents And Burn Injuries
A burn injury as the result of an automobile accident or unsafe premises (such as a restaurant) can involve an extremely difficult recovery process. These burn injuries can end up leaving scars, resulting in disfigurement and requiring surgery in order to be corrected. Medical attention is needed immediately, and oftentimes, medical specialist are needed in order for the injured person to begin on a clear path to recovery.
At Hilley & Frieder, P.C., our lawyers have experience handling burn injuries from all types of auto accidents, including:
- Truck accidents
- Motorcycle crashes
- Head-on collisions
- Highway accidents
- Driving under the influence (DUI) and alcohol-related accidents
Our team comprises highly experienced car accident attorneys who can guide you and your family through the legal process required to obtain financial compensation for a car accident burn injury in Georgia. They will investigate your collision, search for evidence proving that the other driver is at fault and go up against a car insurance company on your behalf.
Compensation Available For A Burn Injury
Suffering a burn injury can be extremely painful and traumatic in more ways than one. At Hilley & Frieder, P.C., our lawyers are passionate about helping clients demand justice and fair financial compensation for the losses experienced due to a burn. They use proven legal tactics to hold parties accountable for acts of negligence or carelessness that seriously injure others.
While our team recognizes that filing a civil lawsuit can be daunting, it is the best way to seek justice and hold the at-fault party accountable. It can provide valuable financial compensation for your losses during this difficult time, such as:
- Past and future necessary medical treatments
- Surgeries and rehabilitative care
- Physical therapy and other therapies
- Medications and medical devices
- Disability accommodations
- Lost wages and future capacity to earn
- Permanent scarring or disfigurement
- Physical pain and suffering
- Psychological trauma and mental anguish
- Lost quality or enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
- Out-of-pocket costs
- Wrongful death damages
You may be eligible for compensation for both economic and noneconomic losses as a burn injury survivor. Some burn injury cases in Georgia also result in punitive damages. This is a different type of compensation that punishes a defendant for especially wrongful acts, such as gross negligence or malicious intent to harm. Severe burn injury cases are typically worth more than minor burns. Discuss the value of your case with one of our lawyers before accepting an insurance settlement.
Do You Need To Hire A Burn Injury Attorney?
Hiring a lawyer to represent you during a burn injury lawsuit can give you access to valuable resources, legal knowledge and capabilities that you would not have had alone. Your attorney will know exactly how to build a strong case based on compelling evidence, for example, as well as go up against an insurance company to demand full financial compensation for your injuries. Your lawyer can take care of many important legal tasks on your behalf, such as:
- Burn injury accident investigation
- Accident reconstruction
- Evidence preservation and collection
- Case building using experts and specialists
- Claims filing by Georgia’s deadline (two years)
- Insurance settlement negotiations
- Representation during a burn injury trial if one is necessary
In addition to efficiently handling the legal side of your case, a burn injury attorney can lend you greater peace of mind as a burn injury survivor. You’ve been through enough as an accident victim. A lawyer can answer your legal questions, provide sound counsel and guidance, and help you take the next steps forward. Trusting a lawyer with your financial recovery can allow you to focus more mental energy on your physical and emotional healing after a severe burn injury.
Contact Our Atlanta Law Firm For A Free Consultation
Contact our firm today to schedule a free initial consultation with one of our experienced Atlanta burn injury attorneys. We can be reached online or by phone at 404-795-6099. Located in Atlanta, we serves clients throughout Georgia in auto accidents, truck wrecks and other personal injury claims.
Mia Frieder was the contributing attorney to this content.