Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC represents people who have sustained amputation of limbs in accidents and due to other types of professional negligence. Our Chicago amputation attorneys successfully prosecuted cases for clients who were injured by the negligent actions of others such as motor vehicle accidents, work-related accidents and medical negligence. We are here to answer any legal questions on this topic including how to receive the monetary compensation if you were injured as a result of someone else's negligence. Should you have additional questions, we invite you to contact our office for a free review of your legal rights.
Why an Amputation is Necessary After Trauma
Surgeons will amputate a diseased or injured body part for distinct reasons. Medical conditions like diabetes or peripheral artery disease can trigger these circumstances. In some cases, the body part is removed due to trauma after an automobile accident. Patients also suffer from frostbite, neuroma (nerve tissue thickening), cancerous tumors, or severe infection. Where treatments are not effective, doctors might elect for an amputation. In some incidents, an amputation may be necessary if the victim is suffering from a life-threatening condition. This might be caused by a defective product like a dangerous hip implant or from neglect caused by nursing home abuse.
Amputating any body part can cause a life-altering change and may have a negative impact on the victim's future. This may touch on their career options, limited abilities, and the need for aid at home and at work. Victims often face the financial burden of ongoing surgical procedures, years of rehabilitation and therapy, and the need for a prosthetic limb. Adaptations prove necessary to the victim's vehicle or home to accommodate their restricted movement.
Alarming Amputation Facts
Statistics maintained by the National Limb Loss Information Center, under the Amputee Coalition, reveal that more than two million individuals in the United States have lost a limb. This number increases by nearly 185,000 amputations every year. More than half of these individuals with amputations lost their limb due to vascular disease including PAD (peripheral arterial disease) and diabetes. An additional 45% lost a limb due to some traumatic event. Other statistics involving losing a limb include the following:
- African-Americans are 400% more likely to experience an amputation compared to other ethnic groups in the United States.
- Approximately 50% of all amputees who lost a limb due to vascular disease have less than a five-year survival rate.
- More than 50% of all individuals suffering from diabetes who have experienced a lower extremity amputation will undergo an additional amputation of the other leg in the next three years.
Hiring an Attorney may be Necessary to Recover the Compensation You are Entitled to Following an Chicago Amputation Accident
In addition to the physical and financial toll of an amputation, victims also endure ongoing financial burdens after losing a leg, arm, hand, finger, foot, or toe. The patient's bills might be insurmountable, and lifetime expenses associated with their injury could place their family's future in jeopardy.
Hiring an amputation accident attorney can benefit the injured victim if their injuries are the result of another's negligence. As the injured victim, you might be entitled to file a claim for extensive compensation to cover the costs of adjustments in your daily living. Your attorney can seek compensation to cover certain expenses such as these.
- Home and Vehicle Remodeling – Your amputation may leave you in a wheelchair. That will require remodeling to your home, office, or workplace. The construction might demand widened entryways and doors or lift and ramp installs. You may need to lower your kitchen and bathroom counters. Some amputees even outfit their car, truck, or van to include hand and lift controls.
- Buy Prosthetics – The cost of prosthetics is astronomical. Artificial legs or arms can exceed $50,000. Unfortunately, you will likely need to purchase additional prosthetics in the future. In the weeks following your amputation surgery, doctors will fit you with a temporary artificial limb that might work well while the swelling subsides, and the limb continues to heal. However, in the months following the accident, you will likely need your existing temporary prosthetic to be replaced with a more permanent artificial limb. This may last five years based on average wear and tear. Sadly, most private insurance carriers will not provide financial coverage to reimburse the cost of buying prosthetic devices.
- Ongoing Therapy – Most patients who experience an amputation will undergo years of comprehensive rehabilitation and physical, psychological, and occupational therapy. Their therapy will likely include these actions.
- Exercise routines to strengthen and build muscle mass to make up for the missing limb. These routines will help increase endurance, add coordination, and ensure balance.
- Stretching exercises that boost the victim's flexibility and prevent the development of contractures where connective tissue tightens and restricts joint motion.
- Pain management to increase the effectiveness of pain-relieving medications. The victim may undergo gentle electrical skin stimulation, skin desensitization, and biofeedback therapy to maximize their sense of touch.
- Movement therapy to master their ability to move about using assisted devices, walkers, and wheelchairs.
- Prosthesis training to help maximize the utility of the prosthetic device. Many victims undergo the agonizing challenge of learning how to use hand or foot prosthetic devices. They slowly relearn how to execute complex prosthetic movements consciously that used to be done effortlessly.
- Relearn how to drive in a vehicle that is now equipped with hand controls.
What is my Case Worth?
The evidence and facts surrounding your claim for compensation are unique in your case. However, an attorney working on your behalf can ensure you receive maximum monetary recovery because the negligent actions of another caused your amputation.
It is best to speak with a lawyer before filing a claim with an insurance company. Many insurance carriers use proven tactics and settlement policies that encourage the claims adjuster to quickly settle cases, minimizing the payout in resolving claims. Typically, the claims adjuster will contact the victim in the days following the accident in an attempt to build rapport and gain a level of trust before presenting a lowball offer to settle the case. Do not be fooled. Your attorney can build a claim for compensation built on effective strategies that ensure you get all the compensation available to resolve your suit.
Arm, Leg, and Finger Amputations
Our law firm has worked with clients who have suffered amputations of arms, legs, and fingers due to these circumstances.
- Construction accidents
- Dangerous products
- Pressure Sores
- Medical malpractice
- Auto accidents
- Motorcycle crashes
Given the severe nature of these amputation injuries, our Chicago based injury attorneys carefully explore all possible roads for recovery. We keep our eye on securing the most favorable outcome to provide for the future needs of our clients and their families.
Special Considerations for Amputees in Illinois Civil Damage Cases
In traumatic injury cases, our group of attorneys understands the significance behind every one of our client's case. Frequently, an injury of this type means a significant loss in earning capacity. Also, it demands accommodations in the home or car in order for the injured person to achieve some level of independence.
Having worked with amputees of diverse types of accidents, we are mindful of these truly special needs. We work hard to figure these different aspects of damages into our client's case. Our office has built relationships with experts in physical medicine, vocational counselors, and psychological professionals. We do this not just to help us present our case to a jury, but more importantly, because these people can truly help our clients.
What are the Most Common Causes of Amputation Accidents Involving Personal Injury?
Amputations happen at a surprising and rising rate. Different government studies over the last few decades have noted their spread and effect. They touch upon every aspect of life: work, recreation, relationships, and family. Amputations completely redefine the lives of their victims.
When people lose limbs, it impacts not just their bodies but the whole American economy, medical system, and broader social environment. Therefore, it is critical to understand the most frequent reasons for amputations. This is necessary to prevent future accidents as well as to better serve those who already suffer. This list surveys common causes for limb amputations.
- Work accident
- Auto crash
- Recreational incident
What Types of Compensation can I Recover From an Amputation Accident in Illinois?
Amputation victims can recover different kinds of compensation. The type and amount depend on how the incident occurrent and how it affected the plaintiff. Normally, the harms encountered in these incidents are either tangible or intangible in nature. For the former, the law refers to these as economic damages. This compensation reimburses victims for the out-of-pocket expenses of the amputation. On the other hand, the law categories intangible injuries as non-economic damages. These repay victims for the decreased life quality the accident brought upon them. They each can be a substantial area of recovery. Here are some examples of economic and non-economic sources of compensation.
- Lost income
- Hospital bills
- Lost normalcy
How Long do I Have to File a Lawsuit Involving an Amputation in Illinois?
How long you have to file a lawsuit for amputation injuries depends on what kind of case you bring. If someone’s unreasonable conduct harmed you, then you can file a negligence lawsuit. In Illinois, you have two years from the time of the incident to file a negligence suit. See 735 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/13-202. If a defective product caused your accident, then you have two years as well. However, products liability actions cannot be brought ten years after the item was received or twelve years after it was first sold. See 735 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/13-213(d). Medical malpractice cases for amputations follow the same two-year rule. Illinois bars these lawsuits if they are brought more than four years from the event. See 735 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/13-212. Reviewing this information, plaintiffs generally have two years to sue for amputation injuries. It is not a wide window. Take a few simple steps to kickstart the process.
- Go see a doctor.
- Talk to a lawyer.
- Jot down the facts.
- Avoid the other parties.
How Much are Chicago Amputation Accident Cases Worth?
Lawsuits for amputations return some of the highest awards in civil litigation. This occurs because the injuries themselves so fundamentally shatter victims’ lives. Never again are they the same. Amputations cause disfigurement, disability, pain, and grief-not to mention costs. To value what a case will be worth, look at a few things.
First, calculate the economic effect of the incident: lost wages; medical costs; future rehab.
Second, estimate the intangible effect of the injury: lost hobbies; strained relationships; reduced self-esteem; discomfort. Intangible damages can fetch two or three times economic damages.
Third, analyze the defendant’s actions. In some cases, plaintiffs might obtain punitive damages if this conduct is viewed as reckless or outrageous. Recovery for punitive damages often dwarfs all other categories. This simple process will provide a general range for the value of an amputation case. To get a better sense, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer.
What are Some Examples of Successful Amputation Injury Cases?
Million Dollar Amputation Lawsuit; Miramar Florida
The Miramar Homeowners Association miles north of the Florida Everglades will now pay millions in financial compensation to a woman who lost her leg after a snake bite. The woman's home in the Silver Shores community backs up to an undeveloped mitigation area that is a natural habitat for dozens of venomous snakes.
$700,000 Amputation Settlement; Palm Desert, California
A young boy suffered life-threatening injuries that required his leg to be amputated, after being involved in a vehicle accident outside his elementary school in 2013. The plaintiff agreed to a $700,000 settlement by the defendants, where most of the cash will be available to him when he turns 18 years old.
$17,900,000 Amputation Settlement; Brooklyn, New York
A 35-year-old Brooklyn mother who underwent amputation surgery of her hands and feet ending a three-year legal battle by accepting a $17.9 million settlement from the hospital and city. The incident occurred in September 2008 while she was at the emergency room in the Brooklyn Hospital Center. The doctor's released her from the ER after prescribing painkillers for her diagnosed kidney stone.
$550,000 Amputation Settlement; Macon, Georgia
A convicted murderer has agreed to a $550,000 settlement from the state of Georgia after losing his left leg from negligent care by the prison doctor. The plaintiff is a diabetic who is serving a life sentence. His attorney filed the inmate's lawsuit in federal court claiming that the 25-year-old prison doctor was deliberately apathetic to his pain and suffering and violated his eighth amendment rights under the U.S. Constitution. This amendment prohibits the government from imposing inhumane and cruel punishment.
$7,200,000 Amputation Settlement; Honolulu, Hawaii
A homeless man agreed to a $7.2 million settlement from the state of Hawaii after claiming the state correctional facility acted negligently and caused the loss of both of his legs to gangrene. The plaintiff also claimed that the facility failed to provide him proper medical treatment which resulted in the loss of fingers on each hand.
Chicago Attorneys Experienced in Traumatic Injuries
If you suffered a significant injury in Illinois that resulted in the amputation of a limb or other part of the body, we understand the feelings of anger and fear you must have. We are also mindful that as an amputee, selecting an attorney is a crucial decision.
The team at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC understands that your injuries were not your fault. They were caused by the negligent actions of others. Our legal team has successfully obtained millions on behalf of the victims and their family members. This ensures they were adequately compensated to cover their medical expenses, household bills, lost wages, loss of future earnings, pain, suffering, and emotional damage. We can help your family too.
We encourage you to contact our attorneys today to schedule a free, no-obligation case consultation. In the consult, we can discuss the merits of your monetary recovery claim. We accept all personal injury cases, wrongful death lawsuits, and preventable amputation injury claims through contingency fee arrangements. This legal contract postpones the payment of legal services until after we have successfully completed your case through a negotiated settlement or a jury verdict.
Our law firm gets results quickly because we understand you need money now. We proudly offer every client a “No Win/No-Fee” Guarantee. This means if we are unable to secure financial compensation on your behalf, you owe us nothing.
Resources for amputees and civil damages: