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What Qualifies As a Spinal Injury Lawsuit?


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The human body can be incredible. But it can be very fragile, too. A sudden injury can completely change your life. A spinal injury is one of the most serious and life-changing types of injury that a body can experience. It is most commonly a result of a road accident, but there are many other ways that you can injure your spinal cord. It can happen anywhere, from the sports fields right down to strolling along the beach.

This injury can leave someone with debilitating pain and paralyzed with quadriplegia, tetraplegia, or paraplegia. Home care could be needed, and neither your life nor your loved one’s life would ever be the same again.

But just getting an injury does not mean that there are grounds to bring a lawsuit against any other parties. It is possible to sue just about anyone. But this does not mean that you have a good case or that it will really qualify as a spinal injury lawsuit.

For example, if you fell at home on your own, completely by accident, then there is no one to hold accountable, no one to bring the lawsuit against. Let’s look at this type of lawsuit and the features are necessary for bringing a case. What qualifies as a spinal injury lawsuit?

Who Is Responsible for Your Injury?

The first step in building a case is knowing who to bring the case against. This might sound like an obvious issue. If someone made an error that resulted in your accident they need to be held accountable for these actions. But there are other times when the liable party is not so clearly defined.

For example, if you injured yourself using a piece of equipment that malfunctioned, the producers of this piece could be held liable for your injuries. These defendants are the ones that are ultimately responsible for the injuries and the pain that you will endure for the rest of your life.

Some common defendants in spinal injury lawsuits include:

  • Medical providers who did not provide you with the proper care

  • Device manufacturers whose product fails -- for example, makers of guns, seat belts, or even children’s booster seats

  • Businesses that have dangerous equipment or facilities -- for example, if you got an injury from riding a rollercoaster that malfunctioned

  • Some businesses are liable for the actions of their employees, if they are the ones that attacked or injured you through neglect on their premises

  • The person who was the direct cause of the injury -- for example, a driver of a vehicle that crashed into you.

Did Someone Make the Injuries Worse?

On the other hand, you could have been in an accident where your injuries were minor but, because of the lack of care, they worsened. This could be a doctor that does not help you in time or first responders that don’t secure your neck and aggravate a spinal cord injury. Or it can even be someone that did not allow you to get the proper treatment that you needed to receive.

A spinal injury is devastating. But when this injury comes with the knowledge that it things could have been different, this can be terrible. Holding accountable those who are responsible will help justice be served; it will also give the patient the support they will need to live their life as fully as they possibly can while dealing with their new reality.

Can They Pay for Your Spinal Injury?

One of the biggest reasons that people do decide to bring a lawsuit against the responsible parties is that the care for spinal cord injuries can become wildly expensive. Often you are not ready for the care that you will need in the future, and bringing a lawsuit against the liable parties will give you some money to work with.

How much is a spinal injury lawsuit worth? It can be worth millions. But even if you win a lawsuit against an individual, it won’t help if they don’t have insurance and/or assets to cover the damages.

That is why your attorney might advise you to file your lawsuit against a larger entity, instead of just against the individual that hurt you. For example, if your injury was because of neglect by a doctor, it might be appropriate to also name the hospital in your lawsuit. They have insurance that covers those types of injuries. They also have the responsibility of making sure that their medical personnel are highly trained and don’t cause harm to the public.

In the end, it is all about the victim and making their lives easier. With damages, you could afford to receive the treatment and care that you need to put your life back together.

Other Factors to Consider Before a Spinal Injury Lawsuit

There are several other factors that you also need to consider before you decide to bring a lawsuit. Some of these include:

  • Statute of limitations

  • Evidence

  • Legal precedent.

The statute of limitations on a personal injury is makes it advisable to decide relatively quickly whether or not you would like to file a lawsuit against the liable parties. This can be hard because you are still trying to adapt and understand these new changes. But filing the suit will allow you to get the ball rolling. It will also ensure that you don’t have regrets about not filing, regrets that you will not be able to change at that stage.

Evidence is essential. Just saying that this injury is a result of someone’s mistake will not be enough to get you paid. You need to have as much proof as possible. Keep all documents of scans and medical information that you can get your hands on. If anyone gives you anything on paper, keep it to show as evidence in the case.

The last factor is whether or not there is legal precedent. If a case is very unique, it can be hard to prove who is responsible. Showing that there is precedent can take months to years and be a difficult hurdle. You should not expect to be paid for your suffering early on in the process.

What You Can Claim For

Knowing what you can claim for will also allow you to begin this journey to healing emotionally. It is possible that the victim of the injury has been so greatly affected that they can’t speak for themselves. Then a loved one can file the lawsuit on their behalf. It will allow the family to get the funds that they will need to care for their loved one for however long they need to be cared for.

If you are the victim, you file your own claim and with your attorney fight for the funds that are owed to you.

You can claim and get compensation for the following:

  • Medical bills: These can add up really quickly; if your spinal cord injury has kept you in the hospital for a long time, this bill can be devastating. Knowing that you will have assistance to pay for it can be very valuable.

  • Physical Therapy: Even if these exercises can’t promise complete mobility in the future, they can help you become stronger.

  • Loss of earnings: This is especially devastating when your family depended on the paycheck that you bring. If someone was liable for the accident, they need to ensure that those lost wages are compensated.

  • Loss of enjoyment of life: The spinal injury will leave some form of lasting impact on your body, whether that be pain or permanent disability, and this will result in more hardship. If someone was responsible for that suffering then they should pay for it.

What Our Attorneys at Goodman Acker Can Offer

Our attorneys at Goodman Acker are passionate about helping people receive the funds they are due when tragedy strikes. We have 150 years’ worth of experience in personal injury law that you will need to win your case and get the compensation that is due to you, as well as satisfied clients and results that demonstrate our effectiveness and commitment.

When someone causes a spinal injury, it will have a massive impact on the life that you will live going forward. You will not be able to do everything that you used to be able to do. And care for a spinal injury is very expensive, both in the hospital and when you finally can come home.

We will work with you to ensure that we pinpoint who the negligent party was and bring a lawsuit against them. We will work toward getting you the money that you deserve and need, while also being mindful that this is a very emotional period in your life and the lives of your family.

Contact us today at (248) 286-8100 or go to our website for a free consultation and to find out more about what we offer.