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Protecting the TBI victim from common defense tactics

Attorney Steven Gursten of Michigan Auto Law will speak on bulletproofing the traumatic brain injury client from common attacks during the Tennessee Association for Justice Music City Symposium this week

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Traumatic brain injury (TBI) automobile accidents are often aggressively defended by insurance companies and defense attorneys. These insurance defense lawyers focus on the medical classification of “mild” and that TBI victims usually will appear to not be visibly injured or impaired as a way to viciously attack the brain injury survivor, deny the TBI exists, and sadly often to accuse him or her of malingering and exaggeration.

It’s become the playbook on how to defend these cases today.

The challenge for plaintiff brain injury lawyers is explaining the medicine behind TBI — and how the injury has affected the plaintiff’s life — when most people even today have a perception of what someone with a TBI must look like and act like from Hollywood movies that is so different from what the medical literature shows and the real aftermath of a serious automobile accident.

I will discuss many of these legal and medical challenges at the Tennessee Association for Justice Music City Symposium, which runs September 25-27 in Nashville, TN. My legal presentation is called, “Bulletproofing the TBI Victim from Defense Tactics.”

One example I will share is from a serious truck accident case resulting in the brain injury of my client. My client’s brain injury was completely disregarded by his so-called “independent” medical examiner, Dr. Rosalind Griffin. Dr. Griffin testified — under oath, mind you — that my client gave answers to her questions that proved he was not brain injured.

Luckily, I was able to videotape my deposition of Dr. Griffin.

The plot thickened when I blogged about what Dr. Griffin did to my client, and what it could have cost him because I wanted other TBI victims and Michigan attorneys to know what she tried to do in my case — and may very well have gotten away with if the exam had not been recorded.

Dr. Griffin, who was also a member of the Michigan Attorney Discipline Board, grieved me for speaking out, demanding I remove my blog and the trial transcript of her testimony under oath that I put online for attorneys and accident victims to read.

In the end, justice prevailed and her grievance was dropped by the Michigan Attorney Grievance Commission, which affirmed my right to post this and in a victory for attorney bloggers everywhere, this has become one of the seminal cases nationally on the first amendment rights of attorney bloggers.

The Tennessee Association for Justice Music City Symposium is designed to teach attorneys serving the brain injury community proven courtroom strategies that can help protect the brain injury patient or client when defendants and insurance companies choose to avoid financial responsibility by viciously attacking the plaintiff and his or her treating doctors (also part of the defense playbook these days).

As I touched on above, some of the most common defense attack themes will be reviewed, as well as several strategies that brain injury lawyers can employ to protect the TBI survivor.

For more information or to register for the event, click here.

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