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Answers to Important Questions About Catastrophic Injuries and Compensation in New Jersey & New York

By Greg Kohn

Out of all personal injuries, catastrophic injuries are the most debilitating. Catastrophic injuries often result in lifelong impairments and disabilities, which result in ongoing and future damages. We understand that you have been through a traumatic experience and have many questions. In this blog, our New Jersey personal injury attorneys review important questions about catastrophic injuries and compensation in New Jersey and New York.

What Is the Difference Between a Personal Injury and a Catastrophic Injury?

Personal injuries are harm or injury to a person’s reputation, emotions, or body. In personal injury cases, “personal injury” refers to the bodily injuries, emotional distress, and mental anguish someone sustains because of another party’s actions. 

Catastrophic injuries are serious personal injuries that result in long-term impairments and disabilities. Catastrophic injuries cause lifestyle adjustments and can cause a significant decrease in a person’s enjoyment of life and quality of life.

What Are Examples of Catastrophic Injuries?

Examples of catastrophic injuries include, but are not limited to:

Other injuries that result in life-long disabilities or impairments could be considered catastrophic injuries. Generally, catastrophic injuries increase the value of a personal injury claim because the pain, suffering, and financial losses increase as the severity of an injury increases. 

What Compensation Can I Expect in New Jersey and New York?

Injured victims can receive compensation for economic damages (financial losses) for catastrophic injuries. They can also recover compensation for their non-economic damages or “pain and suffering” damages. 

Examples of damages in a catastrophic injury claim include:

  • Medical bills and expenses, including the cost of ongoing medical treatment and care
  • Emotional distress and mental anguish
  • Long-term nursing and/or personal care
  • Diminished quality of life and loss of enjoyment of life
  • Lost wages, including future loss of income and reductions in earning capacity
  • Impairments, scarring, disability, and disfigurement
  • Out-of-pocket expenses
  • Physical, occupational, and other rehabilitative therapy

Our attorneys work with leading medical specialists, financial professionals, vocational and rehab specialists, and other expert witnesses to calculate maximum values for your past, present, and future damages for catastrophic injuries. 

What Is the Statute of Limitations on These Types of Cases?

The state sets a statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits. Courts can dismiss lawsuits filed after the statute of limitations expires. The statute of limitations depends on the type of claim, the parties involved in the case, and other factors, but not on the types of injuries sustained.

In New York, the statute of limitations for most personal injury cases is three years from the injury date. Most personal injury cases in New Jersey have a two-year statute of limitations.

However, exceptions to the statutes and the facts of the case change the filing deadline for catastrophic injury lawsuits. Therefore, never assume you have years to file a lawsuit. Always talk with a personal injury attorney as soon as possible after an accident or injury. 

Schedule a Free Consultation With Our New Jersey Personal Injury Attorneys

At Nagel Rice, our legal team has extensive experience handling cases involving catastrophic injuries. We diligently pursue all claims and sources of compensation to obtain the settlement you deserve to help you and your family as you continue to get your life back after a catastrophic injury. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us for a free case evaluation with a New Jersey personal injury attorney.

About the Author
Greg Kohn is a partner at Nagel Rice and specializes in complex civil litigation cases, including professional malpractice, personal injury, class actions, wrongful death, products liability, and commercial litigation.  He has extensive experience representing clients in both state and federal court. Greg has tried many jury trials to verdict and has recovered over $50 million in settlements and verdicts in all types of personal injury matters including automobile accidents, wrongful death cases, slip and falls, and other catastrophic injury cases. Greg also handles medical malpractice cases, involving misdiagnoses, wrongful birth, and delayed cancer diagnosis. If you have questions regarding this article, you can contact Greg here.