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What Is Considered a Catastrophic Injury?

Man in wheelchair staring out of window

Injuries can happen anywhere at any time. Although most are mild, some can be severe, resulting in temporary or permanent disability. The Biren Law Group team is here to assist you with understanding what a catastrophic injury is and what next steps you should take to seek compensation for your or your loved one's injuries.

Definition of Catastrophic Injury

Under 42 U.S. Code § 3796b, a catastrophic injury is defined as an injury that “permanently prevents an individual from performing any gainful work.” Catastrophic injuries are usually the result of a severe spinal cord or brain injury but can also be a result of severe burns, multiple fractures, or loss of a limb or limbs.


This unfortunate event can happen to anyone at any time. Here are some common causes of catastrophic injuries:

  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Workplace accidents
  • Medical malpractice
  • Acts of violence

Damages Available

The damages you receive depend on the severity of the condition. Some of the more common damages you can receive include compensation for medical bills, lost wages, additional care, and loss of quality of life.

Depending on your case, the judge may award punitive damages to deter the other party from repeating negligent behavior. Punitive damages are not guaranteed but depend on the jurisdiction and the contents of your case.

Catastrophic Injury Attorneys

Taking the step to seek justice for your loved one’s injuries can be overwhelming, but the lawyers here at Biren Law Group are with you every step of the way. Just know that we’re committed to you during this challenging time. When you’re ready to hold the negligent party liable, give our office a call at (310) 896-4345 or you can visit our Contact Us page to get started on a free consultation.