How Much Is My Spinal Cord Injury Worth in a Lawsuit?

Posted on October 13, 2023 in Personal Injury

Spinal cord injuries can change your life dramatically in the blink of an eye. Often the result of a serious accident or event, these traumatic injuries create many physical, emotional, and financial challenges.

If someone else’s negligence led to your spinal cord injury, you may recover compensation, but many people don’t know how much a spinal cord injury claim is worth. Treating your injury may require significantly more money than you think.

Your lawsuit has unique elements influencing how much compensation you can recover for your spinal cord injuries.

If you have questions about the specifics of your claim, work with a skilled Phoenix spinal cord injury lawyer to learn more about your rights.

Understanding Spinal Cord Injuries

How Much Is My Spinal Cord Injury Worth in a Lawsuit

Spinal cord injuries occur when there’s damage to any part of the spinal cord or nerves at the end of the spinal canal. They often lead to permanent changes in strength, sensation, and other body functions below the site of the injury.

There are two types of spinal cord injuries: complete and incomplete. In a complete injury, there’s a total loss of sensation and muscle function in the body below the level of the injury. With an incomplete injury, there’s some remaining function.

Various incidents can cause spinal cord injuries, such as traffic accidents, falls, sports injuries, and violence. Diseases such as cancer, arthritis, and osteoporosis can also cause considerable damage to the spinal cord. Depending on the location and severity of the injury, the symptoms can vary widely, from pain or numbness to paralysis or incontinence.

Spinal cord injuries often require immediate treatment to prevent further damage and facilitate recovery where possible.

Long-term effects of spinal cord injuries depend on the severity and location of the injury and the age and general health of the individual. An injury can lead to significant physical challenges, requiring extensive rehabilitation and potentially lifelong care.


Legal Rights and Responsibilities in Spinal Cord Injury Cases

In cases where another party caused your spinal cord injury, your lawyer can explain your legal rights. These injuries often result from someone else’s negligence, such as a driver causing an accident, a property owner failing to maintain safe conditions, or a medical professional making an error. Legally, you can hold these parties liable for their actions.

Proving negligence is a fundamental aspect of any personal injury lawsuit, including those involving spinal cord injuries. It means demonstrating that the party at fault had a duty to ensure your safety, they breached this duty, their negligence led to the accident or injury event, and you suffered harm as a result.

Individuals who have sustained a spinal cord injury have responsibilities as well. One of the most important is to seek immediate medical attention, which can preserve evidence of the injury severity and tie it to the accident. Then, promptly contact a Phoenix personal injury attorney who can guide you through the complex legal process and advocate for your rights.

Each state has a statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit, which gives you a limited time to take legal action. Failing to file a lawsuit within that timeframe may result in losing the right to claim compensation for your damages.

Estimating the Worth of a Spinal Cord Injury Lawsuit

Understanding the potential worth of a spinal cord injury lawsuit is complex, as each case involves various unique factors. Many elements come into play, including the severity of the injury and its impact on your overall quality of life.

Factors Determining the Worth of a Spinal Cord Injury Lawsuit

Several factors can contribute to the ultimate value of a spinal cord injury lawsuit. By working with an attorney, you can better understand how those factors apply to your claim, including how best to determine its value and pursue compensation for your damages.

Severity of the Injury

The severity of the injury is one of the most influential factors in a spinal cord injury lawsuit. The more severe the injury and its repercussions on the victim’s life, the higher the potential lawsuit value due to the increased medical costs and likely long-term consequences of a severe injury.

The location and intensity of the injury contribute to its severity. A fully severed spinal cord, for example, can lead to paralysis and loss of feeling below the injury. A patient may lose all mobility if the injury occurs high on the spine but retain mobility in their hands and arms if the injury is below the waist.

While some patients with spinal cord injuries suffer full paralysis, others may only suffer from decreased mobility.

Impact on Quality of Life

The court also considers the repercussions of the injury on the victim’s life. Spinal cord injuries can end up having a substantial impact on how the victim lives their life and their overall enjoyment.

Some patients may notice a greater decline in quality of life than others. A very active patient who enjoys hobbies outside the house may face greater depression and struggle more with reduced mobility than a patient who focuses on video games, reading, or other indoor activities.

The consequences of spinal cord injuries cover much more than the patient’s general enjoyment of life. They can also harm the victim’s relationships with friends and loved ones. Some friends will naturally fall away during difficult times. Relatives may also find that the victim relies on them much more heavily after the accident. That change in status can create a significant dynamic shift in many relationships.

Medical Expenses

You should include all expenses related to your injury, including hospital bills, physical therapy, future medical care, or necessary medical equipment, in your claim. Talk to your care provider about your current medical costs and anticipated future expenses.

Spinal cord injuries often prove very expensive, not only immediately after the accident itself but in the years that follow. The cost of spinal cord injuries can prove financially devastating for many patients and their families.

Lost Income and Future Earning Potential

Spinal cord injuries can lead to significant time out of work. In many cases, it may take months or even years for spinal cord injury victims to feel comfortable returning to work.

Employer policies may also make it impossible for victims to go back to work until a medical care provider clears them to do so. Some professions may have requirements or restrictions that make it impossible for a spinal cord injury victim to continue to work.

If your injury resulted in lost income or diminished your future earning potential, your lawyer can make this part of your case’s value.

Pain and Suffering

Although challenging to quantify, pain and suffering determines the worth of a spinal cord injury lawsuit. An injury claim addresses the immense physical pain and emotional distress following such an event.

Calculating These Factors

An evaluation of all these factors in terms of economic and non-economic damages takes place. Economic damages, such as medical expenses and lost earnings, are relatively straightforward to calculate using bills and earnings statements.

Non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering or loss of enjoyment of life, require expert testimony to assign a monetary value. The combination of these damages, along with punitive damages if applicable, will determine the overall worth of your spinal cord injury lawsuit. A skilled attorney will be invaluable in accurately assessing these factors and ensuring you get the compensation you deserve.

You may need to present evidence of your financial losses since treatment costs can vary dramatically. By working closely with a lawyer, you can collect any evidence you need to clearly show the economic losses from your injury. A lawyer can also showcase your non-economic damages so you can include them as part of your claim.

The Role of an Attorney in a Spinal Cord Injury Lawsuit

Spinal cord injuries are incredibly difficult to live with, leading to drastic alterations in lifestyle, psyche, and overall well-being. Navigating the legal aspects of such an injury can unfortunately seem just as daunting. This is where you need the skill of a seasoned attorney.

How an Attorney Can Help in a Spinal Cord Injury Lawsuit

The right attorney can play a pivotal role in helping you navigate through the complex maze of a spinal cord injury lawsuit. They can explain the different aspects of the law that apply to your case and prepare a robust legal strategy to maximize your compensation. They can gather essential evidence, consult with medical experts, and work out the details of your case down to the minutest aspects.

An experienced attorney can also negotiate a fair settlement. Insurance companies may offer a settlement soon after your injury, but these initial offers are often far less than you deserve. Your attorney can negotiate with these companies and fight for a settlement that truly reflects the full scope of your losses.

If your case goes to trial, an attorney can represent you in court, compellingly presenting your case to get you the justice you deserve. They will be your advocate and ally, providing the support you need during this challenging time.

The Importance of Choosing an Experienced Spinal Cord Injury Attorney

Not all attorneys are the same. For a case as complex as a spinal cord injury lawsuit, it’s crucial to choose an attorney with experience in this field. A seasoned spinal cord injury attorney will understand your injury’s long-term effects and can consider future costs and needs that less experienced attorneys might miss.

Experienced attorneys will also be familiar with the tactics insurance companies use to reduce their liability and can effectively counter them. They will have a network of medical experts and investigators to call, ensuring your case is as strong as possible. They can also provide guidance and support throughout the process, helping reduce stress and uncertainty.

Robert W. Boatman - Experienced Lawyer for Spinal Cord Injury Cases near Phoenix, AZ area

Robert W. Boatman, Spinal Cord Injury Attorney in Phoenix

When choosing your attorney, consider their experience, reputation, and track record with spinal cord injury cases. Do your research, ask for referrals, and take advantage of free consultations to find an attorney you feel comfortable with and can trust to prioritize your best interests.

Whether you’re just starting the claims process or struggling to negotiate a fair settlement, partnering with a skilled and experienced spinal cord injury attorney can make a significant difference in your case. They can ensure the protection of your rights, evaluate your claim, and fight for the maximum compensation you deserve.

Contact a Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer Today

If you suffered a spinal cord injury due to the negligence of another party, don’t try to handle your claim alone. This could prevent you from getting fair compensation.

Contact an experienced spinal cord injury lawyer to discuss your right to compensation, including how you can effectively navigate any hurdles the insurance company may throw in your way.