The Role Of Life Care Planning In Serious And Catastrophic Injury Cases
Can you see the future? Probably not, although it would be a useful skill to have. One area where it would be useful, is in evaluating the level and extent of damages going into the future for someone who is catastrophically injured, especially someone who is injured at a relatively young age.
Looking Into the Future
For people who suffer catastrophic damages, their injuries and financial losses and needs are not just measured in current medical bills and the number of days they have been forced to miss work. Their damages will be incurred over a lifetime, a lifetime of modifications and expenses necessary to help them adapt to the disabilities and limitations that their injuries have caused them.
What Are Future Damages?
There are a number of elements of damages that may require looking into the future, to calculate value, and to fully and fairly compensate someone for their injuries. Imagine the following measures of damages that someone catastrophically injured, may incur:
- Physical modifications to any future homes or vehicles that may need to be made
- In home care, or managed, nursing home care for people whose injuries and resulting disabilities make them unable to ever live by themselves, or care for themselves
- The cost of medical devices (and their care, replacement and maintenance) that the person will have to forever rely upon
- If someone can no longer work, the increase in salary, accounting for inflation and cost of living, that the person would have earned, had he or she not been injured
- The cost of taking care of emotional or physical support animals that may be needed
- The injuries and diseases that are opportunistic—for example, the likelihood, cost and expense of infections or arthritis that the person would not have developed, but likely now will, as a result of their injuries
An Uncertain Amount
Adding to all these elements of damages is their uncertainty; we don’t know exactly what medical treatment, in-home care, or modifications to homes that someone will need 10, 20 or even 30 years in the future. And adding even more to the uncertainty is the differing needs of accident victims, depending on their situations.
For example, someone with an extended family may not need to pay for in-home care, or managed care, the way that someone may need to if they have no immediate or extended family. We all know that the cost of living varies from region to region, meaning that someone who lives in one area, may have a higher financial need for their accommodations, or medical devices, than someone in another area.
In many cases, a life care or life planning expert will be called, to paint the picture to the jury about what the victim’s future needs are. The expert can account for changes in inflation, region, and the victims own personal situation
We know what accident victims go through, and can help you get the compensation you need for your needs. Call the West Palm Beach personal injury attorneys at Pike & Lustig today.