No one wants to suffer a personal injury in their personal lives or the workplace. But some are unlucky enough to suffer an injury that leaves a permanent mark. Sometimes common personal injuries like those in automobile accidents leave people disfigured, with long-lasting scars that are difficult to cover up. When someone is left scarred and disfigured from an accident someone else caused, they shouldn’t have to pay to fix or heal from it themselves. The Scranton disfigurement and scar injury attorney at Kalinoski Law Offices can help.
What is Considered a Disfigurement?
Disfigurements are the byproduct of the worst personal injury accidents. Disfigurements are not like broken bones or small open cuts that heal over time. These have permanent and distinguishable effects on the victim. Something that leaves a scar is an easy way to tell but is not limited to scars. Any permanent, visible physical damage would be considered a disfigurement.
Common Types of Disfigurement
Several types of injuries are considered disfigurements. These are injuries that won’t heal over time but will leave visible scars unless repaired through plastic or reconstructive surgery, if possible.
- Lacerations: These can be small lines in the skin where it heals. Lacerations can commonly take the form of a long line but can come in many shapes and sizes. Scars can leave someone’s skin malformed with scar tissue.
- Burns: These can be considered a type of scar, but burns specifically come from flames and are ranked in three categories. First-degree burns are the least severe, being red and painful, but don’t leave scars and aren’t disfigurements. Second-degree burns leave painful blisters that can affect a victim’s outer and thicker middle layer of skin but are not always considered disfigurements. Third-degree burns are disfigurements where all layers of the skin have been damaged, usually looking white or charred, and leaving scars that resemble few others.
- Damaged Limb: If an injury leads to one or multiple bones being broken in many locations, it may be impossible for it to heal correctly, leaving someone with the inability to use it as they once did.
- Missing Limb: This is a type of disfigurement that has deeply affected the internal organs of the personal injury victim so much that their limb had to be removed. This can be the loss of a finger, arm, leg, or other portion.
Common Accidents that Cause Disfigurement
Common types of disfigurements tend to come from a common pattern of accidents. Accidents that cause long-lasting marks on a person contain:
- Vehicle accidents
- Construction accidents
- Defective products
- Animal bites/attacks
- Exposure to hazardous materials
- Medical malpractice
What Compensation Can You Receive?
Compensation for personal injuries that lead to major scars and disfigurement depends on the extent of the injury and where it is. Facial scarring, more than anything else, has a litany of factors that come into play more than other types of disfigurement.
Factors that Affect Compensation for Facial Scarring
While internal injuries can leave people with limps or even inoperable injuries, facial scars are incredibly difficult, if not impossible to hide on most occasions. The face is one body location open and free to other people for most of our lives. Facial scarring can be difficult, and sometimes even impossible to fix. Because it’s so incredibly difficult to live with, a scar and disfigurement attorney can leverage several factors to gain you greater compensation:
- Age: The younger someone is, the more compensation they stand to gain. It can be argued that facial scarring affects a young person’s life more than an adult. An adult may already have a spouse, a career, and a social life; a child will have more time to live with the scar and face an uphill battle for so many other life experiences. It may sound shallow, but people judge others by their looks, and it’s a powerful argument for compensation that facially scarred children will be at a disadvantage through their most formative years.
- Permanency: If the scar can be fixed by a plastic surgeon, this not only lessens the amount of compensation you can receive, it actively puts a number you can gain. The more permanent the scar, the more you can gain.
- Location: A scar on the cheek or forehead, out of the way of the central features that make up the face, will garner less compensation than a facial scar over or around the eyes, the lips, or the nose. A scar that affects one of the three senses on your face, can garner you more compensation than most facial scars.
- Severity: Severity can be described by how deep and how far-reaching a scar is. A scar that leaves a deep gash in someone’s face, or stretches across multiple parts of their face, would be considered more severe than a small marking on the cheek.
Other Factors that Affect Other Disfigurements
Facial injuries affect the senses and social discomfort that comes with having a scar that can’t be hidden. Other disfigurements do lead to social discomfort and can affect the senses, but to different degrees than facial scars. This leads to some factors affecting a disfigurement personal injury case that aren’t common in facial scarring that are with other injuries.
- Disability: How much someone’s life has to change to accommodate their loss of movement raises the compensation they can receive. Compensation can cover safety-proofing their home and any home they may live in for the rest of their life. An injury that causes a mental disability is serious but isn’t considered a disfiguration. It’s its own type of personal injury.
- Lost Wages: Lost wages for recovery are something all personal injury cases include, but with disfigurements to the body, a person may lose the ability to work. If someone has a disability, they can sue for all the lost wages they would need to survive.
Contact the Scar and Disfigurement Attorney at Kalinoski Law Offices
Scars and disfigurements are permanent, and an attorney can help you get the compensation you need to live with them. Whether that means seeking compensation for surgery or being able to live the rest of your life in comfort, we can get you what you need. For the legal representation you deserve, contact Kalinoski Law Offices. We’re here to help.