Burns are damage to body tissues caused by electricity, heat, chemicals, or radiation. They may result in blistering, scarring, disfigurement, and swelling. When burns are especially severe, they may lead to shock, infection, or death. Treatment for burns depends on how deep the damage is and how extensive the burn is over the body. Often, treatment is expensive. Most people do not have enough saved in case of significant burn injuries. If you were a victim of burn injuries, you should call the Atlanta burn injury lawyers at Van Sant Law. We are sensitive to safety issues, and we can sign up your case electronically without face-to-face meetings. However, we can easily visit you at your home if you prefer.Burn Injuries
There are four degrees of burns: first-degree, second-degree, third-degree, and fourth-degree burns. First-degree burns only affect the outer layer of the skin. Usually, no long-term damage is involved. At the other end of the spectrum are fourth-degree burns, which are the most severe burns and may be life-threatening. With fourth-degree burns, all the layers of your skin may be destroyed, along with tendons, muscles, and bones.Liability for Burn Injuries
You may hold a person or entity responsible for your burn injuries if you can establish fault. The circumstances under which you sustained burns will determine the theory that you use to establish liability. For example, if you were involved in a truck collision that resulted in facial burns, we would investigate and perhaps use accident reconstruction to determine all the parties responsible for the truck collision. A truck driver may be responsible for a truck accident under a theory of negligence. In that case, a burn injury attorney in Atlanta would need to show that the truck driver breached his duty to use reasonable care while operating the truck and thus caused your burn injuries. However, a trucking company, a mechanic, a third-party loader, or another driver should also be brought into the lawsuit if they seem to share responsibility for what happened.
If you were burned due to a dangerous condition on someone else's property, we would pursue a premises liability claim. For example, if your landlord had faulty electrical wiring that you had reported, and a fire broke out, and you were burned in the fire, you may be able to recover damages in a premises liability lawsuit. It is important to retain an attorney who understands how to show a jury that the landlord had actual or constructive notice of the dangerous condition that resulted in your burns.Comparative Fault
Georgia follows the rule of modified comparative negligence. You can seek damages even if you were partly at fault. However, your damages may be reduced by an amount proportionate to your responsibility for the accident. You will be barred from recovering damages at all if you were 50% or more at fault. For example, if you were speeding while on your motorcycle, and you crashed into a van carrying chemicals that failed to yield to oncoming traffic, you might sustain chemical burns in the collision. In that case, the jury might find that you were 30% at fault and that the driver of the van was 70% at fault. If an Atlanta burn injury attorney can show that your damages were $1 million, you would be able to recover $700,000 from the driver of the van.Damages
After sustaining burn injuries, you may need multiple surgeries. The pain may be excruciating. Once you establish liability, you may recover both economic and non-economic losses that you suffered due to burns. Economic damages arising out of burn injuries may include lost income, emergency care, the cost of surgeries, replacement services, and out-of-pocket costs. Non-economic damages will vary based on the extent of tissue damage and where this damage is located on your body. Generally, when burns are located on visible areas of the body, such as the hands and face, the jury will assign them greater value than burns on hidden areas of the body. Fourth-degree burns are likely to be seen as significantly greater losses than first- or second-degree burns. You may be able to recover for pain and suffering, loss of consortium, loss of enjoyment of life, and mental anguish.Retain a Burn Injury Lawyer in the Atlanta Area
If you were burned in an accident caused by someone else, you should consult the seasoned personal injury attorneys at Van Sant Law. Our firm is committed to seeking justice for accident victims. We represent victims throughout Georgia from offices in Atlanta, Alpharetta, Athens, Cumming, Duluth, Lawrenceville, and Gainesville. Call us at 855-GA-INJURY or complete our online form.