Burns are damage to bodily tissues caused by heat, chemicals, electricity, and other exposures. They range from first-degree burns, the most minor injuries that affect only the outer layer of skin, to fourth-degree burns that involve injuries to the deepest layer of skin as well as bones, muscles, and tendons beneath it. Often, serious burns lead to infections. Whether a burn may be treated depends on how deep it is and how much of the body it covers. Sometimes the skin needs replacement, and often when burns are serious, they leave permanent scars and disfigurement. At the Suthers & Harper, our Savannah burn injury lawyers can represent you if you suffer serious burns as a result of someone else's negligence or misconduct.Holding a Negligent Defendant Liable for a Burn Injury
Serious burn injuries are devastating and may arise in many different situations, including accidental fires, motor vehicle collisions, and exposures to dangerous chemicals, defective products or dangerous property conditions. A furnace, fuel tank or hot water heater can explode and cause a fire that causes serious burn injuries or deaths. Often, they are the fault of someone other than the victim, at least in part. In many cases, the only way that a victim can pay for the required treatment is by bringing a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible parties.
Most often, personal injury lawsuits are brought under a theory of negligence. This requires a plaintiff to prove that the defendant failed to meet a duty to use reasonable care and in so doing caused the plaintiff's injuries. For example, if you were in a car accident in which another vehicle exploded and caused you to suffer burns, you most likely would need to show that the other driver was doing something that fell below the standard of reasonable care. For example, a driver who was speeding while carrying explosives or other hazardous materials probably fell below the standard of care.
You may recover both special and general damages under Georgia laws if you can prove liability for a burn injury. Special damages are concrete, tangible losses like loss of earning capacity, lost wages, and medical bills. They may include future medical losses, such as the cost of surgeries to correct scarring or disfigurement. They may also include future wage loss when you rely on your appearance to make money. This may apply, for instance, if you are a salesperson who suffers burns on your face as a result of a defendant's negligence or intentional misconduct.
General damages include intangible losses, such as pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and mental anguish. They are appropriate when burn injuries cause an accident victim to suffer humiliation, social isolation, embarrassment, and other emotional harm. They tend to be higher when the burn injuries are on a visible part of the body. An experienced trial attorney may be able to elicit testimony about how your injuries have affected your life that may sway a jury. In some cases, punitive damages may be available to punish a defendant and deter future similar conduct, but these are less commonly awarded.Discuss Your Burn Injury Case With a Savannah Lawyer
Burns have the potential to affect your life far into the future. Any person or entity responsible for inflicting these injuries should bear the financial costs of them. The Savannah burn injury attorneys at the Suthers & Harper may be able to represent you in your claim. Our firm helps injured people in Atlanta, Watkinsville, Norcross, Lawrenceville, Roswell, Athens, Marietta, Stone Mountain, Decatur, Pooler, Brunswick and Statesboro, as well as other areas of Oconee, Gwinnett, Clark, Cobb, DeKalb, Fulton, Chatham, Glynn and Bulloch Counties. Contact us by calling 1.800.320.2384 or completing our online form to set up a free appointment. We can assist people who need a car accident lawyer or representation in other personal injury claims.