San Diego Brain Injury Lawyers

Severe head injuries refer to any injuries that harm the skull, scalp or brain. In many accidents, the head is the most seriously injured body part. When you or a loved one suffers a traumatic brain injury, turn to the knowledgeable attorneys at The McClellan Law Firm. With more than 30 years of experience handling complex litigation and catastrophic injuries, we help victims and their families take legal action.

To schedule a free case evaluation with our firm, call (619) 215-1488 or contact our office online.

At The McClellan Law Firm, we put our clients first by providing excellent legal representation and personalized service when handling all brain and head injury cases. Our law brain injury attorneys are recognized throughout San Diego and the nation for excellent legal representation.

How We Recover Compensation for Traumatic Brain Injuries

In traumatic brain injury litigation, the issues often center on the specific nature, extent, and duration of the victim's injuries. While the fact of a severe injury and the liability of a particular defendant might be well beyond dispute, the question of damages is frequently subject to intense dispute and litigation.

If you or a member of your family has suffered a severe injury to the head, there will likely be a legal battle to determine the compensation you need to cover the medical, emotional and financial costs of your injury.

Brain injuries can be difficult to diagnose, and arguing these cases is often a complex task, but at The McClellan Law Firm, we have experience in these types of claims and a history of success. From calling witnesses who are experts in neurology, neuropsychiatry, neuropsychology, and psychiatry to economists and life planners who can explain the long-term costs of an injury, we are prepared to make your case clear.

Traumatic Brain Injury Statistics

In the U.S., at least 1.7 million people suffer TBIs every year.

Approximately three in four of these incidents are considered "mild" forms of TBI, such as concussions. These statistics are gathered and published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. TBIs are very expensive for victims and their families. In 2000, medical expenses, lost productivity costs, and other expenditures associated with TBIs in the United States totaled about $76.5 billion.

Recovering from a Brain Injury Can Be a Lifelong Battle

Most brain injury survivors say they want their old lives back. However, for those who have suffered a brain injury (as well as their loved ones), getting back to their old lives can often be impossible. One man, whose son suffered traumatic brain injury in 1987, described the recovery as going "back to childhood" when he talked about some of the tasks he had to perform for his son, like changing his diaper and helping him in the shower.

Many brain injury survivors and their loved ones struggle most with the lack of information on how to cope with the condition, and what steps are necessary to begin rebuilding their lives. One man claimed that, as soon as he left rehab, he felt like he was completely on his own. Brain injuries can change the lives of caregivers just as much as the people they care for. Assisting a loved one with a traumatic brain injury can quickly become a full time job, putting a hold on a marriage or career, or even going as far as to impact family dynamics.

Most survivors of brain injury recognize recovery as a lifelong journey. You may need to learn to crawl again, move on to using a wheelchair, and then retrain countless physical functions most of us take for granted. While physical therapy is helpful, true recovery from a brain injury can take years and cost thousands of dollars.

Brain Injuries Caused by Oxygen Deprivation

Not all serious brain injuries are caused by blunt force trauma, falls, or fractures. Any time that the flow of blood or oxygen to the brain is interrupted for any reason, damage can result, leading to a loss of cognitive, sensory or motor function. Any such brain damage attributable to a non-traumatic cause is known as acquired brain injury.

The most common causes of acquired brain injury are various forms of asphyxiation, hypoxia, or anoxia that shut off the brain's oxygen supply, due either to a problem with blood circulation or to a lack of access to air.

Acquired brain injury is a common consequence of accidents such as:

  • Chemical exposure at the workplace or in a confined space
  • Near-drowning episodes at a swimming pool or when a boat capsizes
  • Choking accidents when there is a delay in emergency assistance

Small children especially can be vulnerable to acquired brain injury caused by choking.

What are the Symptoms of Acquired Brain Injuries?

Depending on the length of time of oxygen deprivation, the extent of the acquired brain injury can be very severe and permanent. Symptoms can range from persistent headaches to profound coma.

Among the particular problems that a victim of acquired brain injury might encounter are:

  • Loss of memory
  • Deteriorated motor skills
  • Changes in temperament or behavior
  • Loss of the capacity to taste or smell
  • Problems with sleep or appetite
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Difficulty finding words

New Research On Treating Brain Injuries

A new study indicates the symptoms of a brain injury may subside far before it becomes safe to resume activities. The study suggests that brain injury recovery should be considered to come in two modes.

  • The first mode of concussion recovery involves the memory, thinking, and behavioral symptoms
  • The second mode involves the physiological condition of the brain

The study could lead to important changes to the recovery timeline following any brain injury, even those considered "mild." The research used specialized MRI brain scans using a different technique from typical brain scans to identify ongoing brain abnormalities. A traditional CT or MRI often does not show the small changes in brain physiology and function described in the study. The study author said that lack of evidence may drive an inaccurate perception that "any persistent symptoms are psychological." A patient suffering real brain damage may be pushed back into action or have his or her symptoms ignored based on inadequate testing.

The study provides some evidence that the elevated risk of a second brain injury may persist for months after the symptoms of a first injury disappear. Athletes who return to play a matter of weeks after a head trauma may be in significant danger if a second injury occurs. More research is necessary to determine the proper course of treatment and recovery for those who have suffered concussions.

Individualized Brain Injury Representation

Brain injuries are some of the most damaging and complex injuries an accident can cause. Traumatic brain injuries and acquired brain injuries greatly affect the victim and may not ever allow him or her to fully recover from the accident. Serious brain damage may also occur as a result of a severe head injury. It is important to know that even if full recovery is not possible, there are options for long-term care and treatment that may help the victim improve his or her quality of life. These options, however, are very expensive.

Someone who suffers a severe brain injury in an accident may file suit against the at-fault party for:

  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium
  • Past, present and future medical expenses
  • Past and future loss of enjoyment of life
  • Other non-economic and economic damages

Attorneys must understand the types of brain injuries, their symptoms, the treatment options, and long-term care needs. This knowledge of complex head injuries is learned only by working with clients and families of victims who have suffered serious brain injuries first-hand as the effects of brain injuries will differ.

At The McClellan Law Firm, we have more than two decades of personal injury experience. With each brain injury case we have handled in more than 30 years, we have gained important medical and legal knowledge that we will use in representing you or your loved one following a serious brain injury accident.

To learn more about our experience handling complex brain injury cases and how we can help with a loved one's brain injury, call us at (619) 215-1488 to speak with a San Diego brain injury lawyer.


  • “We will NEVER forget what you did for us Craig. We are FOREVER GRATEFUL.”

    - K.V.

  • “I just wanted to thank you for your efforts on [Pam’s] behalf, your skills, and your heart. You are not just a lawyer in what you do, you are a master of your profession. And I hope you are passing your mastery to others who may stand in on behalf of the weak or the helpless. It is an honorable effort and a world of mercy. I saw the extreme and extended dedication you put forth yield the best possible results on [Pam’s] behalf.”

    - Juror

  • “Immediately after our interview we knew without question that no matter how steep the mountain, win or lose, we had found the right person—Craig McClellan, Esq.—[…] We felt a profound sense of peacefulness whenever we came into the office, and we knew that you were protecting our interests at all time.”

    - G.P.

  • “We could not be happier with the McCllelan Law Firm team! My husband and I were referred to Craig McCllelan by one of his peers. We had a very sensitive medical malpractice case that we were hesitant to even pursue. Craig and his team sat down and walked us through the entire process giving us their honest opinion and options. We felt very comfortable with the process and completely relieved by the end of the first meeting, so we decided to proceed. It is three years later and we couldn't be happier that we did. Craig, Connor, and his team made the entire experience so easy and smooth. They were always available no matter how small our question or concern. I swear they work 24/7! And most importantly, we knew that they truly cared about us and the outcome. They fought for our family and have given us the piece of mind that our son's healthcare will always be covered. It is truly the greatest gift and we will forever be in their debt!”

    - S.P.

  • “It was a real honor to preside over a case with you as counsel. In my mind you represent all that is good in our profession.”

    - Judge J.

View More

Our Awards & Accolades