How Burn Injuries Are Classified

Our burn injury lawyers can sit down with you to calculate the extent of your damages when we discuss your case, but in order to determine how much you’re owed in financial compensation, we first have to determine what type of burn you have and how severe it is. There are four traditional classifications of burn injuries, with a first-degree burn being a minor burn that only affects your outer layer of skin, such as a bad sunburn acquired from a day at the beach.

The more serious and painful burn injuries that can be challenging to recover from, however, are second, third, and fourth-degree burns. These burns are described as the following:

  • Second-degree: This burn affects both the outer layer of your skin, known as the epidermis, and the lawyer below, or the dermis. The area is pink or red in color and can appear blistered, and is usually painful. Excision or skin grafting may be required to make a complete recovery in a few weeks or months.
  • Third-degree: These burns destroy not only your epidermis and dermis, but your muscles, tendons, and even your bones, too. A third-degree burn will usually be black or white and can appear leathery. Because these burns or so severe and damage nerve endings, victims usually lose sensation in the affected area of their body. Victims will likely need skin grafting and cosmetic surgery, and permanent scarring is inevitable.
  • Fourth-degree: The most severe type of burn destroys all your skin’s layers and affects your bones, muscles, tendons, and fat. Victims require skin grafting and in some cases, amputation is needed.

In addition to the burn itself, victims may also suffer from related complications. Because burns expose your skin and the underlying layers, you’re more vulnerable to bacterial infection and even risk developing sepsis, which can travel through your bloodstream and cause organ failure, resulting in death. Other known complications include breathing problems, low body temperature, scarring, and bone and joint problems that develop when your scar tissue tightens your skin.

Who Can Be Held Liable for My Burn Injuries?

Having handled burn injury cases for years, our lawyers have seen liability fall on different individuals and entities. Determining who is ultimately responsible for your damages and pain depends on the nature of the accident that caused your injuries.

Liability will vary depending on the type of accident that occurred. Common types of accidents include:

  • Car accidents: A variety of factors can contribute to a fire started in a car crash. One of the most common factors is a leaking fuel tank or line. Even the smallest leak that occurs in a dangerous crash is enough to start a major fire on the road. Fires can also be started as a result of defects like electrical system failures or explosive airbags. In many of these cases, the auto manufacturer can be held responsible for damages.
  • Defective products: Consumers have the right to expect the products they buy to be safe to use. Unfortunately, some mistakes happen, whether during the design or manufacturing process. If your hairdryer has blown up and caused serious burns, you may have a product liability claim on your hands.
  • Premises liability: All property owners are expected to maintain their premises and keep it free of dangerous and harmful conditions. Some owners are extremely neglectful and do nothing to fix these conditions, while others attempt to make repairs that ultimately fail. A property owner could be held liable if their negligence leads to a fire in their buildings or their lack of fire safety equipment results in burn injuries.

What Damages Can Be Recovered in a Claim?

The costs of skin grafting, cosmetic surgery, and hospitalization, all of which may be required to treat a severe burn injury, are enough to add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars. Other financial burdens a victim may have to deal with include lost income and non-economic damages like the pain they suffered or the ridicule they may experience from their scarring in the future.

Our lawyers can establish liability and hold negligent drivers, property owners, and others responsible for your damages so you won’t have to worry about paying your bills. You can rest at home or in the hospital knowing our experience law firm has your case handled.

Concerned about the cost of your skin grafting and other damages? Our Indianapolis burn injury lawyer can get the money you need to pay your bills when you call us at 317-488-5500 for a free consultation.

Indianapolis Burn Injury Office

951 N Delaware St
Indianapolis, IN 46202

Phone: 317-488-5500