Catastrophic injury

“Catastrophic injury” has no legal definition but generally refers to serious injury resulting in long-term  disability. The impact on quality of life and  extent of care required are two indicators of catastrophic injury.

At Pappin Law we know that for those seriously injured the speed, quality and duration of care provided is directly proportional to their recovery. Withholding medical care or treatment due to financial considerations is common, especially when an insurer is involved. Unfortunately, this can have lasting and devastating consequences.

Our goal is to ensure that our severely injured clients recover physically and psychologically as completely as possible. To achieve this goal, Pappin Law provides legal assistance with all five phases of catastrophic injury:

1. Survival

This is the most immediate concern after serious injury, and may involve resuscitation, emergency surgical intervention or life support. Vital decisions need to be made urgently. Disputes may arise about medical intervention, and legally complex issues will need to be resolved rapidly. This is particularly true when the victim has not signed an Advance Health Care Directive (a ‘Living Will’),

2. Intensive care

This is the first step towards improving a victim's quality of life. It typically involves repairing or protecting damaged body parts, administering medication, providing pain relief and monitoring recovery. There is sometimes a failure by medical professionals to perform necessary procedures or provide optimal acute care. Legal intervention may be required to ensure these are supplied.

3. Treatment and Rehabilitation

Treatment providers and rehabilitation specialists attempt to restore a victim to pre-injury status. The restoration of physical function, treatment of mental impairment and return to society are integral parts of this phase. Many treatments fall outside the scope of provincial healthcare coverage and insurers will attempt to economize whenever possible. They can, however, be forced to fund appropriate treatments and therapies with the input of an experienced personal injury lawyer.

4. Long-term care

Some who have been seriously injured will never be able to care for themselves. Part-time or around-the-clock assistance may be required, at the victim's home or in a residential facility. Needless to say, the cost of such assistance can be prohibitive. Pappin Law will ensure that adequate funding is made available to pay for the appropriate standard of care. For a lifetime, if necessary.

5. Compensation

Obtaining proper compensation for catastrophic injuries is more challenging than for ordinary injuries. Detailed expert evidence regarding the extent and the likely duration of disability (both physical and mental) is always required. Evidence from non-medical professionals can also be required, including from economists, occupational therapists and accident engineers.

Pappin Law

Medical, financial, rehabilitative, therapeutic and legal issues are hotly contested by insurers who seek to keep compensation to a minimum. Obtaining proper compensation requires a highly coordinated medical and legal strategy. The help of an experienced personal injury law firm like Pappin Law is extremely important.

With catastrophic injuries, each case is unique. Sometimes it is more effective to work collaboratively with insurers, medical professionals and treatment providers to ensure that the highest standard of care is provided. Other times it may be necessary to bring the force of law into the equation. Pappin Law has the experience with personal injury representation to know the best course of action, and the appropriate time for each strategy.

Contact Pappin Law for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation to discuss how we can be of assistance with all phases of catastrophic injury.