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Burn Injuries 101: How They Happen and How to Legally Pursue Them

There are several types of burns that may vary depending on the underlying accident. Further, these injuries may vary in severity from 1st to 4th degree, with the latter being the most catastrophic categorization. Understanding the factors surrounding your personal injury case will help you receive the best compensation.


Thermal burns are caused by contact with excessive heat such as steam, boiling water, fire, heated objects, and likewise objects. Examples of thermal burn accidents include:

  • Fires: This can be the fault of a premise owner, landlord, or another tenant.
  • Overly hot food or drinks: In some cases, a restaurant may be liable for these injuries. For example, in Liebeck v. McDonald‘s, the victim recovered over $500,000 in damages related to a scalding coffee served to her.
  • Spillage of hot oil or water: Boiling water or oil is another mishap that may be common in the restaurant industry.
  • Household appliances: Misuse of appliances or product malfunctions can result in burn injuries.


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Chemical burns are caused by exposure to toxins. There are countless everyday products that can result in a chemical burn including:

  • Detergents
  • Bleach
  • Cleaning products
  • Battery acid
  • Ammonia

Workers may also be exposed to other highly toxic chemicals which can result in injuries and even death.


An electrical burn occurs when an individual comes in direct contact with an electrical source, passing a current through their body. Lightening is a prime example of this type of injury. Direct contact with electrical outlets, power lines, electric cords, stun guns, and other electrical applications can also result in electrical burns.


Friction burns occur when the skin comes into hard contact with another object, such as a road. These injuries are a combination of a blunt abrasion and a heat burn.

Friction burns can arise from motorcycle and bicycle accidents. Often, individuals may experience road rash. This is because of the high speed of the vehicle at the time of collision and the temperature of the asphalt.

Other accidents may include sports injuries, or those involving equipment such as a treadmill or conveyor belt.

What Type of Burn Can I Sue For?

burn injury lawsuit

Even first-degree burns may be subject to a personal injury claim. However, the severity of the injury may impact the compensation received in personal injury cases. Regardless of the injury, victims should always contact a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer to understand their rights.

If your case has enough evidence of negligence or wrongdoing, it may be worth considering a personal injury trial. Los Angeles personal injury attorneys will often argue for burn injury compensation under the general practice areas outlined below.

Premise Liability

As mentioned before, a burn injury can sometimes be the fault of a premise owner. Property owners are expected to maintain a safe premise and address any noticeable hazards. They should also remain compliant with fire codes such as:

  • Following proper layouts
  • Not allowing occupants to exceed capacity
  • Having proper and identifiable exits
  • Having fire extinguishers and sprinklers

Landlords are just one party that can be liable for premise fires, especially as it is their duty to oversee tenants. However, individual tenants can also be liable for unit fires especially if they deliberately went against their lease agreement.

Store owners, schools, and even local government facilities can also be subject to burn injury lawsuits. All property owners, public and private, must properly protect visitors from hazards on their land.

Product Liability

Electric appliances, motor vehicles, work equipment, and other devices can malfunction, despite how reputable they may be. Regardless of whether it is a product design flaw or a faulty device, manufacturers can be held responsible for injuries. Los Angeles personal injury law firms can help prove the manufacturer guilty.

Motor Vehicle Accident

Motor vehicle accidents can often result in fires and subsequent thermal injuries, or even friction injuries. Burn injuries can be a means for legal action if you can prove another individual was at fault for the injuries.

For example, say you were on a motorcycle and fell on the asphalt when swerving from a drunk driver. You then suffer a friction burn upon impact. In this circumstance, the driver can be liable for the burn injuries.

In some cases, a car manufacturer may be the responsible party. A faulty design of a fuel system can easily result in a car accident fire. This can be extremely harmful to drivers and passengers, resulting in severe burns.

Sadly, building occupants often become trapped in fiery explosions resulting in tragic fatalities. Los Angeles wrongful death attorneys can support spouses and other family members in pursuing justice for these incidents. They can help file a wrongful death lawsuit, and handle any other needs associated with the wrongful death case.

Burn injury cases involving motor vehicles can be complex. A Los Angeles injury attorney will help you every step of the way from negotiating with insurance companies to trial.

Work Accident

Depending on the profession, burn injuries in the workplace can be an extreme hazard. Labor-intensive jobs such as electricians or factory workers may come across equipment and materials that can be dangerous. While it is a worker’s job to follow safety procedures, accidents beyond their control may occur. And in some cases, their employer may be to blame.

Employers are legally required to train their employees and provide the safety protections necessary. If an employer fails to do so or knowingly disregards safety concerns, they can be sued for burn injuries. Los Angeles wrongful death attorneys will work relentlessly to prove the negligence of employers in burn fatalities.

If you believe another party is responsible for a work-related burn injury contact a personal injury lawyer in Los Angeles. Legal representatives will help gather the evidence needed to successfully argue your case in a court of law.

Contact a Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Attorney in Los Angeles

Burn injuries can be severely painful and may impact your day-to-day life. Not only should you be compensated for the medical bills, but you should also receive financial support for the pain and suffering caused by someone else’s negligence.

The Law Offices of John J. Perlstein is a highly recommended Los Angeles wrongful death law firm regularly fighting on behalf of burn injury victims and their surviving loved ones. Our wrongful death and personal injury attorneys in Los Angeles, CA, can help you navigate any claim. We are dedicated to protecting our community and will do whatever it takes to hold the responsible party accountable.

For a free consultation with a Los Angeles injury attorney please fill out our contact form today.

Surviving loved ones considering a wrongful death claim should also fill out the contact form. Our experienced Los Angeles wrongful death lawyers can provide guidance on whether your case is strong enough to pursue.


Los Angeles Personal Injury Victim or Surviving Loved One of a Los Angeles Wrongful Death Victim?

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