Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers
Every year over 10,000 Americans suffer spinal cord injuries and permanent paralysis in their arms or legs.
Most of these spinal cord injuries result from accidents, falls or violence. Nearly two-thirds of these injuries happen to people who are under 30 years old resulting in disabilities for their entire adult lives.
In many of these instances, insurance companies and negligent parties may be able to provide substantial compensation for these injuries. People injured because of a negligent act have the right to seek legal assistance to help defray medical bills, compensate for pain and suffering and provide for future lost income.
Any person who has suffered a spinal cord injury should get a legal evaluation as soon as possible after the accident. The legal consultation is critical because you need to find out what help you may be entitled to. Even an accident that appears to be no one's fault could still result in a recovery. Since the injuries are so severe, the damage claims will often exceed the amount of available insurance coverage. The injured person needs an intelligent, investigative attorney who will find all coverage and who is able to devise theories to involve other parties potentially at fault for the injury. For example in the case of a violent crime, the victim may be able to recover from the owner of the property for failure to provide adequate security.
Conversely, if the available insurance coverage is adequate (in the case of a several million dollar policy) the company will have much more of an incentive to fight the claims (to avoid paying large sums to the injured person) and the attorney will need to be an experienced trial lawyer. As with any case time is critical, as time goes on, you may lose some of your rights and it will greatly help your case to begin evidence collection and take information immediately after the accident or as soon as possible thereafter.
Typical Spinal Cord Claims
Auto Accidents: In these situations, insurance policies of the drivers may cover the costs of the injury and rehabilitation. Issues of fault may or may not be relevant depending on the state.
Victims of Violence: If your injury is a result of a violent attack, like a shooting, you may be entitled to legal compensation for your injuries. For example, if the attack took place in a shopping mall parking lot, the shopping mall may be responsible for damages.
Slips and Falls: if the fall took place on a construction site or on someone's property, the owners may be responsible (even if the owner is a family member). Also, defective products such as ladders may not be designed with sufficient safety features. In many of these cases, the injured person may be entitled to legal compensation.
Sports-related accidents (accounting for 6% of cases) are often related to diving accidents. If the injury is at a swimming pool, the homeowner's insurance policy or the managers of the pool may provide compensation.
In all of these cases, it is difficult to tell where responsibility
and liability lie. An experienced lawyer can help you determine
what legal compensation is available.
Spinal Cord Injury Overview
The spinal cord is protected by the bones and vertebrae of the spinal column. When an injury occurs, the cord is not typically cut, but the thin, fibrous extensions of nerve cells surrounded by the vertebrae are crushed and damaged. These nerve cells, called Axons carry electrical signals through the spinal cord. Each set of nerve cells runs in pathways, some cells transmitting sensory information up to the brain; while others travel down from the brain to direct the body's movements. An injury to the cord causes these pathways to be disrupted, causing the person to lose sensation and control over critical body functions.
Spinal Cord Injuries are classified by the lowest point on the spinal cord under which there is a loss of feeling and movement. If the injury is higher on the spinal cord and closer it is to the brain, generally it results in a more serious the loss of sensation and function.
Quadriplegia (also called Tetraplegia) is when person with a spinal cord injury near the top of the spine (between C1 to T1). Quadriplegia results in a loss of sensation and movement in the head, neck, chest, shoulder, and arms.
Paraplegia is when a person loses feeling and sustains paralysis
in the lower parts of the body, including the chest, stomach,
hips, legs and feet. The injury is from (T2 to S5.)
Find a Lawyer Representing People with Spinal Cord Injuries
Submit your inquiry using our Spinal Cord injury submission page.