Chicago Burn Injury Lawyer
The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC represent people who have sustained life-altering burn injuries due to accidents caused by others' negligence. Our Chicago burn injury attorneys have won cases for burn injury victims who suffered a burn injury due to the negligent actions of property owners and by third parties in work-related accidents.
Our burn injuries law firm is here to answer any legal questions on this topic, including how to receive monetary compensation if you were injured due to someone else's negligence. We invite you to contact our burn injury lawyer toll-free at (888) 424-5757 for a free consultation so we can explain your legal rights during a free case evaluation.
Burn Injury Victims Face Unique Challenges
The burned skin can be a very painful and traumatic injury because it can leave both physical scars (such as skin grafts) and emotional scars that impact the quality of burn injury victims' lives forever.
If a burn is the result of a workplace accident, negligent property manager, car accident, other vehicle accidents, or defective product design, burn injury victims may be able to seek compensation for their serious injuries.
Insurance companies generally dislike having to pay substantial claims on behalf of their policyholders. So, it is not uncommon for burn victims to encounter resistance when seeking the compensation they rightfully deserve.
Types of Burn Injury Claims and Their Causes
The statistics are sobering. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), nearly half a million fires in 2017 occurred in building structures, with 72 percent in residential buildings.
There were 3,400 civilian fire deaths, with 77 percent of those deaths occurring in the home. However, a Chicago burn injury attorney knows that fires can happen anywhere, from an apartment complex to your workplace to a car accident while traveling on the highway.
Types of Lawsuits Our Experienced Chicago Burn Injury Lawyer Handles
Our Chicago personal injury attorneys are conversant with the physical pain and suffering, emotional trauma related to severe burn injuries related to accidents, workers' compensation, and even medical malpractice.
We fight hard to prepare your personal injury case for the best possible outcome via settlement or trial against the offender or insurance company.
Many burn injury victims we represent throughout the United States require immediate medical attention in cases that involve:
- Apartment building fires (premises liability)
- Motor vehicle accidents or car accident fires
- Construction site accidents
- Chemical plant explosions
- Deadly house fires
- Explosion accidents
- Fires caused by poorly designed products, such as Pam cooking spray
- Burns and smoke inhalation resulting from burn victims being unable to leave the premises because of locked fire exits
- Construction accidents
- Chemical burns
- Tanker truck accidents
- Refinery fires
- Thermal burns from scalding hot water or liquid
- Electrical burns on a construction site
- Workplace accidents
The causes of most severe burn injuries in the above examples often left the victims with permanent injuries and nerve damage. The severity of the burn case is often crippling, creating permanent or temporary disabilities.
Talk to a Chicago burn injury lawyer today about your severe burn injuries (third-degree; radiation burns; etc.) and potential cases in a free consultation with you and your family members.
Types of Burn Injuries and Their Medical Treatment
A burn is among the most painful injuries and requires specialized medical attention because the skin contains a high density of nerves. A burn victim with serious burn injuries might need a surgical skin graft followed by ongoing medical treatment that could cause additional pain and suffering.
Cosmetic surgery (skin grafts) might be necessary to minimize the appearance of scars in situations where a burn results in scarring, depending upon the type of burn.
If your loved one suffered a burn injury from a chemical, electrical, or other type of accident, you may have a personal injury lawsuit for financial compensation.
According to the American Burn Association, physicians and medical experts categorize burns in four different degrees:
Just about everyone has experienced this mild type of burn at one time or another. These burns are considered superficial and damage only the top layer of skin, known as the epidermis.
First-degree burns are a type of burn typically characterized by redness in the affected area, occasionally peeling skin, and moderate skin pain that subsides after 2 to 3 days. Sunburns, intense friction burns, electrical burns, chemical burns, burns from hot liquids, and non-blistering light burning on the skin are examples of common first-degree burn injuries.
This burn causes considerable damage to both the skin's top layer and the layer underneath, known as the dermis.
If the affected area is large, or the burn is on the delicate skin of the face, feet, hands, buttocks, or groin, it requires immediate medical help.
Second-degree burns are classified as either partial or full-thickness. Partial-thickness burns often involve the presence of blisters and wounds that tend to be red or pink, excruciating, and at times appear wet.
Complete healing usually requires up to twenty-one days without grafting, with minimal scarring. Full-thickness burns tend to appear white or red and dry.
These burns cause significant deep tissue damage that usually requires surgical repair. It affects every layer of skin, including the epidermis, dermis, and hypodermis, which is the bottom-most layer. These severe burns can also cause significant burn injuries to blood vessels, nerve endings, muscle tissue, and bones.
Common causes of 3rd-degree burns include fires and explosions; contact with scalding liquids, toxic chemicals, or hot objects (such as radiators); and electrical sources. Nearly every 3rd-degree is a medical emergency that requires immediate treatment from skilled healthcare professionals to ensure that the body does not lose critical fluids.
It is uncommon for anyone to experience a fourth-degree burn, usually caused by an electrical accident. This type of burn damages the skin, underlying tissue, bones, tendons, and muscles.
Because severe burns can have such a devastating effect on your health and quality of life, it is essential to consult an injury attorney to protect your legal rights and obtain the compensation you deserve.
Apartment Buildings as the Source of Common Fire Hazards
One of the risks of apartment living is that despite being entirely responsible and taking all the precautions you can to avoid a fire, you may suffer consequences due to the actions of your landlord or neighbors.
While apartment fires are often caused by tenant carelessness associated with cigarettes, stovetop cooking, and space heaters, improperly maintained buildings are also a significant cause.
According to NFPA, most home fires can be traced to the property's electrical wiring issues and HVAC system malfunctions.
Is My Landlord Responsible for My Burns?
Building owners and managers (possibly even the insurance company) are responsible for taking the following fire-prevention measures as enumerated by the Chicago Municipal Code:
- Proper wiring
- Smoke detectors
- Exit paths
- Fire escapes
- Fire extinguishers
- Fire-resistant doors
Property owners and managers must take every reasonable action to reduce the risk of fire for the safety of occupants and visitors. However, landlords (and maybe their insurance company) often find it far more cost-effective to cut corners and neglect some of these duties, which is illegal.
Should a property owner or another person fail to abide by the building code or provide a safe environment, anyone who is injured due to negligent behavior has a right to recover compensation from the owner.
When landlords are in violation, and a fire occurs, they may wish to avoid being financially exposed to a personal injury lawsuit. They will thus pressure or threaten injured victims into refraining from filing insurance claims to minimize their financial liability.
Malfunctioning Smoke Detectors Consistently Responsible for Serious Burn Accidents
The detectors must be installed in the correct locations and operate correctly. NFPA recommends that all apartments be equipped with detectors in each bedroom and just outside of bedrooms and on each level of the home.
Most local governments mandate at least one working smoke alarm in an apartment. Unfortunately, many fires that start in the kitchen go unnoticed for too long because the smoke detector does not go off or is not located in the vicinity of the kitchen.
Additionally, ionization detectors are among the most commonly used but may not always detect smoke from slow-burning, smoldering fires until the fire has significantly progressed. Know where all the smoke alarms in your home are located and check them periodically to ensure they are operational.
Workplace Burn Injuries
Burn accidents occur at work, especially if workers are required to operate powerful machinery or work in proximity to flammable materials. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports over 5,000 burn injuries every year resulting from explosions or fires at the workplace.
While workers' compensation benefits provide for the payment of medical expenses and lost wages, injured workers are often denied financial compensation for harm and suffering, diminished quality of life, or scarring.
In such chemical burn injury cases, the workers' comp case benefits could be supplemented through a personal injury lawsuit against a third-party entity, the manufacturer of a defective product, or a subcontractor who acted negligently.
Burn Injuries Caused by Defective Products
Was the origin of the fire that caused your severe burn injuries a faulty product such as cooking equipment, heating, or other electrical items? If so, you could bring a product liability case against the maker, distributor, or retailer.
In product liability cases, you can sue anyone on the "chain of distribution." Any person or entity that played a part in its design, creation, or sale from the very beginning until when the product came into your possession.
Products liability actions generally have two claims:
- The design or manufacture of the product was defective and caused your burn injuries
- The warnings or instructions that came with your product were defective resulting in your burn injuries
Product liability cases with catastrophic burn injuries depend on the individual case's specific facts. They examine the design or creation of commercial goods and require expert evidence or testimony, which can be expensive.
No matter what kind of product liability action you bring for your burn injuries, you must allege and prove the following elements:
- The product or product warning was defective
- You were reasonably using the product for the purpose for which it was intended
- You were injured while using the product
- The product defect caused the injury
Our Chicago burn injury attorneys can evaluate your case and determine whether the facts support bringing a burn injury lawsuit for product defects.
Where are the Leading Chicago Burn Treatment Centers?
The Windy City has some leading hospitals and doctors specializing in treating patients with serious burns.
The primary Chicagoland burn treatment facilities include the following:
- The University of Chicago Medical Center
- Loyola Medicine
- Cook County Hospital
- Lurie Children's Hospital
Filing a Workers' Compensation Claim
Did you suffer a severe burn injury while on the job? Nearly every employer in the United States is required to carry workers' compensation coverage for all employees to pay for their damages associated with suffering and on-the-job injury or illness.
The Worker's Compensation benefit program is a no-fault system that pays injured workers for their medical bills and lost wages. The coverage also includes payment for temporary or permanent disabilities.
Typically, insurance adjusters hired by the insurer will determine the extent of the victim's burn injuries caused by an explosion, fire, or burn accident. However, while most claims provide immediate compensation, the burn injury victim might not be getting all the monetary recovery they deserve.
Our Chicago, IL burn injury lawyers routinely file burn injury lawsuits against employers and other third parties for failing to follow fire safety rules to ensure worker safety. Some of these cases involve fires where regularly serviced fire extinguishers fail to operate when needed to extinguish fires.
In other cases, the victims are severely burned due to a failure to provide accident victims a sturdy fire escape or not installing fireproof doors to protect them from a deadly fire or explosion.
Filing a Third-Party Claim
An experienced fire and burn injury attorney can evaluate your case to determine if your severe burn injury resulted from someone's negligence. Our burn injuries law firm can seek compensation from additional parties that might include:
- Smoke detector manufacturers: Some ionization smoke detectors reportedly take up to thirty minutes to trip the alarm.
- Fire extinguisher makers: A defective one-time fire suppressant used in fire extinguishers and drops sodium bicarbonate powder could lead to catastrophic injuries and fatalities when building or apartment fires consume the structures.
- Employers: An employer could owe the injured employee additional compensation over workers' comp benefits if their behavior was egregiously negligent, such as failing to follow fire safety laws that led to a fire and burn accident.
Put Our Chicago Personal Injury Attorneys to Work for You
Did you suffer burn injuries? Were you, or a loved one, burned in a fire, work accident, or any other accident caused by the reckless actions of another person? If so, the Chicago burn lawyers of the Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC law firm might be able to help you after a burn injury. They can offer a free case evaluation no matter what the causes of burn injuries were.
Our Chicago, IL personal injury attorneys have assisted thousands of clients after a burn injury in the past on a contingency fee basis. We are confident our Chicago burn injury lawyers can secure the compensation you need to pay for your medical bills, recover lost wages, account for out-of-pocket expenses, and more. A burn injury attorney can help today.
Call our attorneys from Chicago, IL today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or through the contact form to schedule a free case evaluation for legal advice on how to handle your burn injury case. All discussions with our burn injuries law firm remain confidential through an attorney-client relationship.
Our experienced Chicago burn injury attorneys can investigate your accident case and discuss your legal rights and options in greater detail in a free consultation.
Contact us today and talk to an experienced personal injury attorney for more info about your burn injury lawsuit.