"John" is struck from behind on Interstate 20 in Columbia, SC. The at-fault driver crashes into the back of John's pickup truck doing 75-80 mph. John's car has slowed down due to rush hour traffic. The property damage to both vehicles is significant.
When John arrives at Palmetto Richland, he has a 3 cm laceration on the back of his head. He is disoriented. John asks the same questions over and over. He has retrograde amnesia extending back several weeks. John's CT scan is normal, however. Palmetto Richland diagnoses John with a mild traumatic brain injury and discharges him the next day.
John lives in Aiken County. He sees a local neurologist several weeks after the wreck. The local neurologist diagnoses John with post-concussive symptoms and releases him a few months later.
Fast forward 6 months: I meet John's family, who tells me "just doesn't seem the same, has a tough time remembering stuff, and gets angry over the littlest things." I encourage them to have a neuropsychological evaluation performed to determine the effects of John's brain injury on his personality, mood, and cognitive ability.
The tests confirm what the family has witnessed. John is having difficulty with attention and mood swings due to axonal shearing in the frontal lobe. In other words, the crash rattled his brain, stretching and tearing some of the electrical wires at the front of John's brain.
Our South Carolina personal injury lawyer then seek out a second opinion from a neurologist. He also concludes that John has sustained a mild TBI with permanent effects. The second neurologist believes that John would greatly benefit from medication, counseling, and follow-up care.
Despite these facts, the insurance company for the at-fault driver fights us tooth and nail for two years. It is not until a few days before trial is set to begin that they finally acquiesce and pays John a fair amount for his injury.
John's story is not uncommon. Not only are TBIs caused by car accidents in Columbia and across the state, these injuries frequently go undiagnosed, untreated, and undervalued without the help of medical and legal professionals. Even mild brain injuries (i.e. concussions) can have a major impact on a person's life. If you are experiencing any lasting symptoms due to head trauma, call an attorney who understands what you are going through and what can be done to help. For guidance and a free consultation, contact me at 803-790-2800.
Get Legal Help After a Car Accident in South Carolina
The issues you face after an auto accident are not as simple as some people would have you believe. From how medical bills get paid to how much you should be compensated, it is always better to receive a free consultation from a car accident attorney than to rely on an insurance company that increases its profits by paying you less.