Traumatic Facial Disfigurement

Edited by Admin
Traumatic Facial Disfigurement

Coping with Traumatic Facial Disfigurement


Personal injury lawyers deal with all kinds of cases, including serious accidents causing debilitating brain or spinal injuries. But cases involving disfigurement can be almost as complex as those dealing with more severe injuries. Someone who suffers a disfiguring facial injury may be perfectly capable of returning to their former activities, and yet his or her life will have changed in significant ways. In our superficial society, looks can count for more than they should.


Some of the most common causes of a disfiguring injury include burns, motor vehicle accidents, electrocution, dog bites, sports accidents, workplace accidents, and violent attacks. If you or a family member has been disfigured in an accident, you may be able to pursue legal action against the person or entity responsible.


What to Do


When a disfiguring accident occurs, the focus is understandably on getting medical attention as quickly as possible. In many cases, procedures can be done to minimize facial scarring, especially if proper measures are taken shortly after the accident occurs. These types of accidents can, however, have devastating psychological effects. Unfortunately, our world places value on a certain kind of appearance, and punishes those who deviate from this ideal. Attractiveness is often associated, falsely, with success, and fairy tales portray the villains as unattractive. These factors can contribute to the distress people with facial disfigurement injuries are feeling. If you’ve suffered a traumatic facial disfigurement, you may experience a range of reactions, including:

  • Embarrassment.
  • A sense of being invisible, yet at the same time highly visible, as strangers stare.
  • Resentment at strangers who feel they have permission to comment and ask questions about your appearance.
  • Uncertainty about what reaction to expect from others.
  • Self-consciousness around others.
  • Isolation or loss of self-confidence.
  • Anger.

Meeting with a Lawyer


When dealing with these types of emotions, it’s difficult to think about legal issues, but it may be important for your future that this become a consideration as soon as possible. Taking action can be one way to reengage with life, and receiving compensation can go a long way toward helping you regain peace of mind. So once you have begun to heal, it’s a good idea to seek out a personal injury law firm and make an appointment to consult with a lawyer. (Don’t engage a family lawyer who has no experience with personal injury cases – these types of cases are complex and a lawyer who has been through the process numerous times will be far more efficient than one with little or no experience with personal injury law.)


Many people hesitate to call a lawyer because they fear they don’t have enough money to pay lawyer’s fees. In Ontario, most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis, which means that they won’t get paid until you receive money. You should discuss a percentage fee with the lawyer before signing with him or her, and make sure you understand the terms of the agreement.


Before even meeting with the lawyer, gather together any important paperwork that you have. If you have a copy of the police report, or photos of the accident scene, bring them with you. Obtain any medical records that you can, and try to recall the names of all of the doctors who’ve treated you. It’s particularly important to keep records of what happened, and what your treatment has consisted of. Get a notebook and write down everything you can remember, then make dated notes about any treatments or medical personnel that you consult going forward. During a court case, these records can become important.


You may also want to ask your doctors about future treatments that may be possible for you. In many cases, the initial injury has to heal before procedures such as hair transplants or scar reductions can be performed. Canada’s first face transplant was performed in 2018 in Montreal, and it may well become more available in the near future. If there is a cost associated with the procedures that may be helpful to you and your recovery, make note of those costs and which doctors recommended them. These costs may be used in your case to help calculate damages. (Other factors will affect the calculation of damages, including your gender and age. Younger people are routinely awarded larger cash damages than older ones, and women generally receive more than men do.)


Finally, before meeting with the lawyer, make a list of any questions you have about the process. Before signing on with any lawyer, make sure that your personal style meshes with theirs, and that you are able to communicate well with one another.


Remember to take good care of yourself: eat well, refrain from drinking and smoking, exercise if possible, and find ways to reduce stress such as listening to music, meditating, journaling, or connecting with other patients with similar issues.

Being involved in an accident that causes facial disfigurement is something no one wants to experience. Contact a personal injury lawyer that has experience dealing with these types of cases. Get your equilibrium back – and get the compensation you deserve!