Were you or your loved one injured through a fall while participating in a sleep study? Fall-related accidents, like slip and falls, trip and falls, and falling out of bed, can cause extremely serious injuries. These accidents are also a leading cause of death, especially among the elderly. Clinicians are aware of this and have the highest duty of care to monitor their patients. In addition, the hospital and clinic must take all reasonable measures to keep their property free of hazardous conditions. If they are lax in their duties, it’s more than likely that a patient will be injured due to an act of negligence.
If you fell at a facility where you were participating in a sleep study, please take some time to explore your rights and legal options with the lawyers of DTLA. We can also assist you if your family member, spouse, or registered domestic partner passed away due to a sleep study fall accident.
Causes of Fall Accidents during a Sleep Study
Sleep studies are recommended by doctors to help patients with medical conditions, such as sleep apnea, insomnia, sleep walking, restless leg syndrome, narcolepsy, REM sleep behavior disorder, and sleep talking. Your doctor will refer you to a sleep center, which is usually located in a hospital or clinic. While you sleep – normally, overnight – a doctor, psychiatrist, neurologist, or sleep specialist monitors your sleep cycle to identify various conditions, like your heart rate, snoring, and oxygen levels in the blood. This information will help your doctor determine the best course of treatment for your needs.
If all you have to do is go to sleep, what can cause you to be injured during a sleep study?
Unfortunately, there are many hazards at a medical facility that can lead to a slip and fall or trip and fall. Water leaks, chemical spills, slippery tiles and carpets, poor lighting, and ice and snow in outdoor areas are just some of the reasons for a slip and fall injury. Or, safety measures installed for the purpose of preventing falls – handrails and slip-resistant mats, for example – may be defective or insufficient. Visitors can also suffer from a trip and fall due to exposed wiring, clutter and debris, uneven flooring, and loose or torn carpeting / rugs.
Then, there’s the possibility of falling out of bed during a sleep study, or while you’re sleepwalking. People who participate in these studies have sleep disorders, which can cause them to move erratically or leave their beds while they’re still in a state of sleep. Because they’re in unfamiliar surroundings, there is a high risk of the patient suffering a fall-related injury. To prevent these types of accidents, you are supposed to be monitored at all times by a technologist. This is no different than a doctor or nurse’s responsibility to a patient that’s been hospitalized. Thus, when this duty of care is breached, the patient may be able to sue the hospital for their injuries.
Common Fall Accident Injuries
People tend to underestimate the dangers of falling down, but these are traumatic accidents with a high risk of long-term or lifelong injuries. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that around 800,000 people are hospitalized annually from an unexpected fall, and most of these cases involve fractures and head injuries. To get a sense of just how serious these accidents are, take a look at the injuries you can sustain from a fall:
Injuries can also be emotional, as victims can suffer mental trauma that develops into a fear of falling or doing things can cause them to fall down. They may also have flashbacks and nightmares of the accident, which can lead to PSTD and other anxiety disorders. If the sleep study center is legally responsible for your accident, we can fight for the compensation that’s needed to treat and manage your symptoms.
Can I Sue for being Injured during a Sleep Study?
Yes, you can sue for being injured at a sleep study clinic if you can prove a case of negligence against the sleep center and/or the people responsible for your safety during the study (doctor, nurse, sleep technician, etc.) To succeed in a sleep study fall injury claim, you will need to establish:
The individual, business, or entity owed you a duty of care while you were on their property.
That duty of care was breached by negligence or misconduct, meaning that the responsible party failed to exercise reasonable care to ensure your safety.
Due to their negligence, you had a fall accident on the premises, which caused you physical and mental injuries.
The type and extent of your injuries entitles you to monetary compensation from the liable party.
Keep in mind that these are the basic elements of proving fault, or liability, in a personal injury case. It takes a great deal of evidence to prove that someone acted in a way or failed to take certain actions, which directly resulted in your accident. We can build a strong and ensure that you are fairly compensated for your injuries from a sleep study fall accident.
What should I ask for in a Lawsuit?
This is a very important question, as most insurance companies will try to convince you that you are only owed the cost of your medical expenses. This is far from the truth, as there are multiple damages that you are entitled to as an accident victim. Here is a list of the losses that we may be able to request on your behalf:
Some of these losses, like emotional distress, are challenging to recover as they are based on your mental injuries from an accident. An experienced fall accident injury lawyer at our office can evaluate your damages and fight for the maximum payment you deserve.
What if my Family Member Died from Falling during a Sleep Study? Can I Sue?
If you lost a loved one to a fall injury during a sleep study, you may have grounds to file a wrongful death lawsuit. The losses that can be recovered through a wrongful death claim are as follows:
These cases are difficult to prove without the expert knowledge of a personal injury attorney. A thorough investigation of the accident will be needed, along with physical evidence and expert testimony. Our lawyers have what it takes to prove a case of wrongful death, thereby ensuring you and your family receives justice from the responsible party.
Average Case Value of a Fall Injury Lawsuit
The value of a fall injury lawsuit is determined by your injuries, and how they affect your life in various ways. Generally, we have to consider the financial and emotional costs of your accident, which can be substantial when it comes to fall-related injuries, like hip fracture, traumatic brain injury, and spinal cord damage. These cases may be valued at around $250,000 to over $1 million. In the most serious cases, the victim may have permanent complications that make it impossible for them to return to work or take care of their family. Multi-million dollar settlements are possible with these claims, depending on the severity of health complications. On the other hand, cases with minor injuries that are fully treatable may be worth around $15,000 to $50,000.
How long will it take to Recover my Payment?
Some cases are settled within a few months, while others can take 2 or more years. There are many issues that will affect the amount of time it takes to settle your case. The severity of your injuries is a primary factor, as serious injury claims generally take longer to resolve. This is due to the fact that most at-fault parties want to save themselves money. Depending on their resistance, it could take 12 to 18 months to negotiate a fair amount of damages for what you have endured. If your claim cannot be settled directly with the defendant’s insurance company, it could take up to several years to recover your payment through a lawsuit.
What’s the Deadline to File one of these Lawsuits?
The statute of limitations for a fall-related accident claim is two years in the state of California. For most victims, the two-year window starts from the date of the accident. However, some injuries take time to manifest, so the statute of limitations can also start from the date that the injury is discovered. If you are seeking compensation for a wrongful death, the time limit to sue is two years from the date of death. The courts are very strict about the deadline to file your lawsuit, and extensions are only granted in rare circumstances. To ensure that your lawsuit is filed in a timely manner, contact our attorneys without delay.
Free Second Opinion Consultation
Do you have questions about your case that are not being answered by your attorney? Do you believe it’s taking too long to settle your case, or that your claim is worth more than what you’re being told? It’s not unusual to have moments of doubt or frustration during the lawsuit process. We may be able to assist you with a second opinion, which is a completely free consultation with one of our attorneys.
For some clients, it’s in their best interest to switch lawyers and continue their injury claim with us. But this is ultimately your choice, and there is no cost for the consultation no matter what you decide. If you’re interested in a second opinion on your case, please give us a call at our office.
DTLA Law Group is Here for You
Dealing with an injury can be very costly, but you don’t have to bear the burden if someone else is responsible for your accident. If you were injured due to negligence by a hospital, clinic, or sleep study center, we can help you recover the damages you are owed.
Along with our many years of practice in accident claims, we believe in treating our clients like family. Our lawyers will never leave you hanging while weeks or months go by on your case. We will answer when you call and ensure that you understand exactly what we’re doing to obtain your settlement. Additionally, our lawyers work on contingency so that you never have to worry about the cost of legal representation. All our services are free until we win you case, and if we don’t win, you owe us absolutely nothing. To take advantage of our Zero fee guarantee, just give us a call at our office and schedule a free case evaluation. We look forward to fighting your rights and helping you move forward from your accident.
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