Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) refers to temporary or permanent damage to the brain as a result of direct trauma, such as blunt force, or indirect trauma to the brain, such as whiplash or inhalation of toxic fumes.
TBI varies in degree and is classified as mild, moderate or severe. The damage may occur at the time of injury or may develop later due to swelling and bleeding inside the head. Even a mild brain injury may have long-term, serious consequences for a survivor. On the other end of the spectrum, brain injuries may also occur in conjunction with spinal cord injuries, causing life-altering impairment.
Our lawyers have worked with brain injured clients for over 30 years and understand the medico-legal issues involved and their emotional impact. We have helped many brain-injured clients become financially secure through the resolution of their legal claim by way of settlement or through the courts, including multi-million dollar awards for those with greater need for support and resources.
Over the past thirty years, we have fostered relationships with medical practitioners and specialists in diagnostic, prognostic and rehabilitative medicine. Our ability to access top medical specialists enables us to optimize the value of your claim, ensure it is not undervalued by the insurer, and build a strong case for your current and long-term needs, physically, financially and emotionally.
We do not do any work for insurance companies; we only represent injured plaintiffs. We are trial lawyers and your interests are best served, in our opinion, by preparing your case as if it is going to be heard by a court. We have found this approach is the most effective for optimal results. When challenging insurance companies, we leverage our history of outstanding trial results and our reputation for trial readiness to obtain optimal compensation for you. In fact, insurance adjusters often hire us for themselves, their friends and their children. We have also advised a government body, the Public Guardian and Trustee of British Columbia, on the suitability of Personal Injury settlements they plan to offer.
We’re one of BC’s largest groups of Personal Injury lawyers for a reason –our lawyers and staff genuinely want to make a positive difference in the lives of our brain injured clients. We are informal, relaxed and empathetic in our approach to client care, yet formidable litigators in a courtroom.
Our role is to be your advocate and to be involved at every step of your progress, including coordinating access to medical equipment, occupational therapists, and programs to promote your financial, social, physical and emotional well-being.
At Hammerberg, your brain injury lawyer plays a key role on your recovery team. As MSP does not necessarily cover all the resources you need, we secure the healthcare resources necessary to optimize your recovery. If we are unable to obtain insurance-funded resources, we have the financial resources to assist with the funding of those needs privately. We hire Occupational Therapists to do a full analysis of your requirements and ensure that their recommendations have been met, including getting quotes for any home modifications you may need and adaptations necessary for you to safely and comfortably optimize your independence.
In British Columbia, you have two years from the date of the accident to commence legal proceedings, or your claim will be barred.
Injuries, and their resulting effects on work, social and recreational activities, can worsen over time – it’s important to know your rights and the strict time limits that apply.
Hammerberg’s brain injury lawyers represent you on a contingency fee basis, so you do not pay legal fees until your claim is resolved positively.
You do not have to live nearby to access our services. Our lawyers can travel to you from the outset. We offer a free no-obligation in person meeting before you hire us so you can best determine what we can offer you. We put your needs first and will meet with you, your family and your doctors, as needed.
Every member of society is required to act responsibly and to do their best to avoid putting others at risk. Personal Injury law is based on the principle of accountability for negligence. It is a basic right in tort law for someone injured by the negligent act of another to be put in the position they would have been in if the negligent act had not occurred, as best as financial compensation can achieve.
If you are injured by the negligence of another party, there is usually an insurance policy in place to be accessed by you. Whether you decide to pursue your rights to the maximum of your entitlement with the help of a lawyer or not, that does not change the fact that this liability is carried by the insurance company. You are not adding to the burden of the at fault party by pursuing your rights, you are simply compelling the insurer to live up to their financial liability which stems from a contract of insurance that their customers have been paying into, often for decades.
When considering motor-vehicle accidents, for example, there is almost always some form of property damage and an insurance claim will have to be made. This is what accident insurance is for. However, the insurance companies are not on your side and they have their own legal representation.
Negotiating with insurance companies on your own is risky. When you deal directly with an insurance company, your goals and theirs are at odds. Their agent’s job is to settle claims with as little cost as possible – and they are good at it. They may seem kind and sympathize with you, but the reality is that their goal is to earn a profit for their employer. They need to collect premiums and pay out few claims to earn their profit. Without a lawyer investigating events and preparing your case as if it is going to trial, it is unlikely that you will receive appropriate and fair compensation.
In any type of impact accident, brain injury symptoms might not be immediately obvious. Survivors often dismiss or fail to recognize their symptoms. It is often a family member who notices signs of cognitive impairment, such as difficulty speaking, sleep disturbance or short term memory problems. It is vitally important to have a thorough medical assessment of all your injuries after any type of accident, and to monitor symptoms closely and follow-up regularly with your physician.
If you have sustained a concussion or have been diagnosed with a brain injury, report any new or worsening symptoms, such as:
Negotiating with insurance companies on your own is neither necessary nor advisable, as your goals and theirs are at odds. Their agent’s job is to settle claims with as little cost as possible. They have lawyers on their side and so should you. Without a lawyer prepping your case as if it is going to trial, you won’t get appropriate and fair compensation.
If you have sustained a brain injury as a result of someone else’s negligence, including motor vehicle, cycling, pedestrian or slip and fall accidents, it is in your best interests to pursue a personal injury claim as soon as possible. Brain injuries affect your family and social life, your ability to work and your overall quality of life. You deserve compensation for your injuries and your compensation should also reflect the loss of these intangibles.