Weld County Burn Injury Lawyer
From a simple burn in the kitchen to a devastating burn that threatens your life, burn injuries can happen to anyone, at any time. Depending upon the extent of the burn, burn injuries have the potential to cause permanent disfigurement or a loss of feeling to the afflicted limb. When such an injury occurs due to the recklessness of another, victims should feel the need to take legal action against them in the form of a civil claim.
If you have been the unfortunate victim of a burn injury, it might be in your interest to consider talking to a practiced injury attorney. A Weld County burn injury lawyer could inform you of your eligibility and help you with the process of filing a claim.
Types of Burn Injuries
The severity of a burn would likely affect the amount of damages that could be awarded to a Weld County burn victim. Types of burn injuries, in the order of least to greatest in severity, range from first-degree to sixth-degree.
First-degree burns are relatively minor in comparison to the others. Usually, they result in skin redness and irritation. Second-degree burns, however, might lead to permanent disfigurement. Third-degree burns are life-threatening and require immediate medical attention. Such burns might cause discoloring of the skin and may require skin grafts, surgery, or even amputation if necessary.
Fourth-degree burns often result in severe injury, typically the loss of a body part. If an unfortunate victim receives fifth or sixth-degree burns, it is unlikely they will survive, due to damage to their internal organs.
Liability Issues for Negligence in Weld County
In many cases, victims are burned from a negligent action, such as an accidental fire caused by another person, for example. To seek recovery against a responsible party, a plaintiff must prove the four elements of negligence, which include duty, breach, causation, and harm. Also, a burn victim in Weld County must follow Colorado’s modified comparative fault standard. Victims looking to hold negligent parties accountable for their actions should get in touch with a Weld County burn injury lawyer as soon as possible.
Comparative Fault Standard
According to Colorado Revised Statutes §13-21-111, a person may only recover damages in proportion to the degree of negligence of each party. That means that if a plaintiff is found at-fault for causing the injury, their damages are reduced by the percentage of fault they are determined to have contributed to the accident. However, if the injured party’s fault is more than 50 percent, they may be barred from recovering.
Last Clear Chance Rule
Colorado also adheres to the “last clear chance” rule, which states that if an injured plaintiff is partially at fault, but the defendant had a chance to avoid the accident, the injured party may still recover. One example would be if a defendant had the opportunity to avoid a car accident with a plaintiff that ran a red light, but failed to, resulting in burn injuries to the plaintiff. The injured plaintiff could still recover even if they were partially at fault for the accident.
Relief for Burn Injury Victims in Weld County
Plaintiffs with burn injuries in Weld County could pursue three types of damages against the responsible party, economic, non-economic, and punitive damages. Under economic damages, a burn victim might be able to recover past medical bills, and past and future earnings.
Non-economic damages might include emotional stress, impairment of quality of life, or pain and suffering. These damages have a current statutory limit of $468,010, after being adjusted for inflation. However, if clear and convincing evidence is presented that the harm warrants a higher amount, Colo. Rev. Stat. §13-21-102.5(3)(a) raises the limit to $968,030.
Under certain circumstances, burn victims may also pursue punitive damages under Colo. Rev. Stat. §13-21-102(1)(a) if the defendant’s conduct was fraudulent, malicious or willful.
How a Weld County Burn Injury Attorney Could Help
If you suffered from a burn, regardless of what degree, you could benefit from legal assistance. Depending on your circumstances, an experienced Weld County burn injury lawyer might be able to review your case and help you decide the next steps during your road to recovery. Start exploring your options, call now, and schedule a consultation.