Episode 5: Why I became a brain injury lawyer

When I tell people that I'm a brain injury lawyer, one of the first questions often asked is "how did you get into this field?"

I tell them about my client who lived in Brooklyn who was stopped at a traffic light when hit head on by another car that lost its brakes. And I tell them that my client suffered some very significant physical injuries; a broken leg, and a fractured hip. And I also tell them that my client recovered from these injuries, but was never the same nonetheless.

I tell them that my client developed memory problems, couldn't concentrate the way he used to, had problems at work with co-workers because he became belligerent and nasty. People just didn't want to be with him.

I tell them about how my client could leave his house in the middle of the winter and forget to put on a coat. I tell them about the sleep problems he had, and the constant headaches that he suffered from.

And I also tell them that he looked normal.

These injuries, although you couldn't see them, affected his life, and impacted his day-to-day functioning much more than his fractured hip, or his broken leg that finally healed.

My client was just never the same again, and I needed to understand why. And quite honestly, I was just fascinated.

So I started to attend lectures about traumatic brain injury, and seminars offered by the Brain Injury Association of America to educate attorneys about this invisible injury at a time when most people really weren't paying attention to this injury, or devoting sufficient attention to understanding it.

And with my background in medical malpractice, it was easy for me to understand how the brain functioned, the structures of the brain, and how easily a brain can become injured.

I joined the Brain Injury Association of New York State. Started to go their annual conferences and other meetings, and met many individuals who were suffering from a traumatic brain injury, all with problems similar to my client. And again, I was captivated, and fascinated, and began to learn more and more about this injury.

I can tell you that for the last 30 years I have devoted my legal practice to representing individuals with a brain injury. Because they deserve my help. Because they need my help. And because it's gratifying to me at the end of the day when I can provide compensation for these individuals in a court of law, and prove that they have lifetime consequences as a result of their brain injury.


Further reading: The Invisible Rain Cloud, A Short Story About Traumatic Brain Injury

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Brain Injury Insider

michael kaplen

Brain Injury Insider is a weekly video update by The Brain Injury Law Firm ®. We cover the latest news and developments in traumatic brain injury, concussion, and brain injury law.


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