Medical malpractice cases, automobile accident cases, and many other lawsuits may involve brain injuries. When discussing brain injury legal actions, most of the time the underlying issue is either a traumatic brain injury (like in a car accident or sports injury) or problems associated with inadequate medical care (like oxygen deprivation at birth). Far less commonly discussed are situations like physical assaults that result in severe injuries. Like any other situation, our Chicago brain injury lawyers know that fights which cause serious injuries (often to the head) can make one party liable for the damage caused.
For example, Mercury News reported this week on the tragic death of a woman after an altercation with her neighbor. According to the story the police responded to a call in the early morning on Monday indicating that two neighbors were engaged in a fight. Upon arrival, police called for medical support as one in the incident, a fifty nine year old woman, was seriously hurt in the brawl. She was taken to a local medical center, but medical professionals could not save her.
Later it was learned that she suffered a critical brain injury during the attack, which caused her death. Witnesses explain that the victim fell and struck her head on the sidewalk during the fight. That significant blow to the head is assumed to have caused the fatal traumatic brain injury.
The underlying cause of the brawl was not explained, but those familiar with the situation suggest that the two families have been involved in an on-going dispute.
Brain Injuries Following an Assault
Various legal issues may be implicated in assault and battery cases. Of course, there may be criminal implications–though no criminal charges have yet been filed in this case. The criminal law is wholly separate from the civil justice system–the elements of a crime and a civil wrong (tort) are different. That means that the same situation may result in both criminal charges and civil charges, or one of them. Intentional physical attacks are obviously a crime, if the attacks were not provoked or subject to something like self-defense Local authorities will likely conduct a full investigation and then determine if criminal charges are filed.
On top of that, the family of the one injured may file a civil lawsuit–depending on the details of the altercation. Wrongful death lawsuits are often appropriate in situations where one dies because of the misconduct of another. Often that misconduct is negligence (i.e. another driver accidentally failing to yield) but sometimes, as in this case, the misconduct is intentional (hurting another on purpose).
In our area, be sure to contact an Illinois brain injury lawyer to receive advice on whether your situation warrants a lawsuit. Do not forget that visiting with an attorney does not obligate you to anything. Often it is simply a chance to share your story and learn about your possible options. A final decision can then be made down the road.
The need to visit an attorney within a reasonable time is made even more important because of statute of limitation rules. There are often short limits on when a suit must be filed. But a lawsuit cannot be filed immediately, the legal professional usually has to conduct a bit of investigation and put a basic case together before even initiating the suit. The bottom line is that there is nothing to lose by seek out legal advice soon.
See Our Related Blog Posts: