The Becker Law Firm is a small firm of five attorneys who focus on representing clients during what may be the most difficult points in their lives: after they have suffered life-altering injuries. These injuries may result from the careless negligence of another person, business, or organization, and may have even resulted in the wrongful death of a loved one.
The Becker Law Firm isn’t a lawsuit factory. Because we focus on this area of law, we’re selective about the cases we accept. We focus on providing legal services in cases that involve a permanent, life-altering injury or fatality. We seek claims on the behalf of clients who will not get better, and who may never be able to return to the same life they had prior to being injured.
Many of the cases we take on are ones that other firms have passed on because they were too difficult. The Becker Law Firm has won almost $100 million in awards and settlements on cases that other firms chose not to take.
Catastrophic Injuries and Wrongful Death
According to the American Medical Association, a catastrophic injury is a severe injury to the spine, spinal cord, or brain, which may also include fractures to the skull or spine. However, the legal definition of a catastrophic injury is broader. Generally speaking, a catastrophic injury is one that permanently changes the circumstances of the life of the victim and prevents a person from working or enjoying life the way they would have prior to the injury. They often result in permanent disabilities or disfigurement and have long-term effects. Because they render victims unable to participate in life as they had previously, catastrophic injuries also tend to have significant consequences for victims’ families, who may have to provide care for victims, compensate for the loss of income victims had previously earned, and pay for victims’ care and needs.
A wrongful death is one caused either by someone’s negligence or through intentional harm. Negligence occurs when someone has a Duty of Care to others and fails to meet the appropriate Standard of Care. In general, when people act, they should exercise reasonable care to consider and try to avoid potential harm to others. A Standard of Care is the degree of caution that a person or party must take to be considered to have fulfilled its duty. A wrongful death case stemming from negligence involves showing that the failure of a party to meet the appropriate Standard of Care helped cause a person’s death.
Intentionally harming others in a way that leads to their deaths is considered a crime and may be prosecuted as a criminal case. The surviving members of a victim’s family also may bring a wrongful death claim against the perpetrator; this usually happens after the criminal case has been concluded.
However, wrongful death cases are civil cases. While the evidence presented in a criminal case and a wrongful death case for the same incident may be similar, the standard of proof for a wrongful death case is lower. A person may be found liable in wrongful death cases without being convicted of a crime associated with that death.
Types of Catastrophic Injury and Wrongful Death Cases
Catastrophic-injury and wrongful-death cases that The Becker Law Firm has taken on have involved:
- Electrical injuries from downed power lines;
- Traumatic brain injuries;
- Brain injuries caused by lack of oxygen to the brain (hypoxia or anoxia);
- Spinal cord injuries that cause permanent paralysis or nerve damage;
- Severe burns;
- Amputated limbs;
- Permanent loss of function;
- Loss of sight or hearing;
- Other life-altering/catastrophic injuries;
- Wrongful death.
While these injuries occurred under different circumstances, they have all shared a common factor: in each case, our client was permanently harmed because someone else failed to meet the appropriate standard of care.