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Texas Personal Injury News

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Traumatic Brain Injuries and Hazing Incident Lawsuits

Q: Can I sue for personal injuries suffered in a hazing incident?

Hearing that a pro-football player suffered a traumatic brain injury wouldn’t be that surprising to most people. But allegations that the son of a former Dallas Cowboy suffered a traumatic brain injury in a fraternity hazing incident definitely raised some eyebrows.

Coming late to the game, so to speak, by filing a lawsuit nearly 2 years after the alleged incident happened may present some challenges, though. The accessibility and memories of witnesses can become problematic as time passes--which is why it's best to contact a skilled Texas personal injury attorney as soon as possible after being injured in an incident or accident.

According to the lawsuit, the college freshman was pledging a fraternity when he was "struck with a baseball bat, fell down and suffered a brain injury in a 2015 hazing incident".

The suit further claims the pledge--who had lost consciousness from the injury-- "was carted down to the basement and put on a couch and sat unconscious for 10 hours with no medical help". He claims did not immediately report the incident, seek medical treatment, or even tell his family because he was scared and intimidated due to threats that "the fraternity would ruin him, his family's reputation, damage his property and have him kicked out of school".

Since the alleged incident, the lawsuit claims the young man has been plagued with memory problems and has been diagnosed with "a traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder and bipolar disorder". He dropped out of college when his GPA plummeted from a 4.0 to 0.70 “in a semester” and, reportedly, he can’t even remember his social security number.

Hazing events—and the serious injuries and wrongful deaths they sometimes cause-- are making news across the nation. In fact, a different chapter of the same fraternity in this case was permanently banned from a different university last year after a pledge died from brain injuries and internal bleeding suffered during a hazing event.

Personal injury lawsuits are appropriate when someone is seriously injured as a result of the negligent, reckless, or intentional actions or inactions of another person or institution--like a college or fraternity.

Once liability is established, the victim may be entitled to recover compensation for physical and psychological injuries and financial damages. Such items may include current and future medical expenses, current and future lost income and diminished earning capacity, pain and suffering, and more, depending on the circumstances of your case. Sometimes, in select cases, punitive damages—designed to harshly punish the behavior to discourage it happening again—may also be recoverable.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a hazing incident or any kind of accident as a result of someone else’s negligent or malicious actions, the skilled personal injury attorneys at Chandler, Mathis & Zivley can help you maximize the financial compensation to which you may be entitled. While we can't undo the injury, taking legal action can help reduce the financial burden it has caused. Contact us today for a free consultation.

From our offices in Lufkin and Houston, we help injured clients from all over Texas as well as those injured while visiting Texas.


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