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Woman suffers brain injury in hit-and-run, man charged

When a loved one suffers a traumatic brain injury, family members may need to create a plan to handle the possible long-term care for the victim. Unfortunately, family and friends must learn how to prepare for the recuperation process while they are still grieving. Understandably, it may be more frustrating for families when the brain injury results from another's negligent act. Family members of the loved one may pursue a personal injury claim to get help with the costs of their loved one's injury.

Police say that an elderly woman from West New York, across the river from Manhattan, had to be put into a medically induced coma after a recent hit-and-run accident. According to police reports, the woman was near her home when a vehicle struck her and left the scene. The woman suffered a brain injury and broken back. An eyewitness followed the vehicle and stopped the man responsible at a traffic sign. The accused driver now faces charges of driving under the influence, assault by auto and other charges related to the incident.

There are two main categories of brain injuries: open and closed injuries. An open injury is generally defined as a fracture to the skull. A closed injury does not involve a fracture, but could mean swelling of the brain or forming of blood clots in the skull. Doctors often induce comas in brain injury cases to give the brain a chance to recover. If that works, and the person emerges from the coma, they may face long-term costs including medical and rehabilitation costs.

Families may seek a personal injury claim on behalf of their brain injured loved one. The legal theory most often used in a personal injury claim is that of negligence. In a negligence theory, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant had a duty to use reasonable care, failed to do so and that the result was the plaintiff's injury.

When a loved one suffers a brain injury by the negligence of another person, family members must not only learn how to deal with the injured, but must also find a way to handle the long-term costs associated with the injury. A personal injury claim and a comprehensive plan outlining possible care for their loved one may prove critical to the recovery process.

Source: Nj.com, "West New York woman, 77, suffers brain injury and broken back in hit-and-run," Ron Zeitlinger, The Jersey Journal, Oct. 20, 2012

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