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Amputations and the legal repercussions

| Aug 2, 2017 | Catastrophic Injuries |

While a large majority of amputations in the United States are related to vascular disease such as diabetes, a substantial number of amputations are due to a catastrophic injury. Whether it is the loss of a finger or lower limb, an amputation can make the smallest of tasks burdensome. California court systems may compensate those who have undergone amputations for various medical expenses and physical and emotional suffering.  

Unfortunately, many individuals who have suffered an amputation are not properly compensated for their myriad of expenses. Depending on the type of amputation, courts determine the amount of permanent damage and the insurance compensation given. 

The Numbers

The Amputee Coalition estimates that about 1.9 million people are living with limb loss in the United States. 45 percent of the limb loss population lost their limbs from a traumatic accident. The Amputee Coalition also studies the number of amputations performed over recent years, finding that the number of amputations performed in California increased 15 percent from 1997 to 2012. Most of the upper-limb amputations involved the fingers, and almost half of lower-limb amputations involved the toes.

Unsafe Working Conditions in California

The Intercept reports that California inmates suffer a large number of catastrophic injuries such as amputations. While these inmates often make essential products for everyday use, they are nevertheless excluded from the U.S. Constitution’s prohibition on slave labor. According to The Intercept, inmates also exist outside federal safety regulations that help protect Americans from being injured on the job. The University of California Los Angeles’s Labor Occupational Safety and Health program has also reviewed prison injury logs, finding that workers go through little training before handling potentially dangerous machinery.