A spinal cord injury can require adapting to a new life, which can be an emotional and overwhelming time. You will need all the financial resources available as you make the transition to living with a spinal cord injury and plan for the future. Having trusted legal guidance can make all the difference.
The attorneys at Joye Law Firm have extensive experience helping injured individuals rebuild their lives after life-changing injuries such as spinal cord injuries. If your injury was caused by others’ carelessness or negligence, you may have a right to seek compensation to cover your medical bills and other expenses related to your injury. Whether your spinal cord injury was the result of a traffic accident, a slip-and-fall, or some type of workplace accident, our team can help you seek full compensation for the losses you have incurred.
Talk to a compassionate attorney and learn more about your legal options. Call our Summerville office today at (888) 324-3100 or fill out our online contact form. Take advantage of a free initial consultation with a Summerville spinal injury lawyer at Joye Law Firm.
What Accidents Could Result in a Spinal Cord Injury?
Many spinal cord injuries are caused by traumatic accidents such as:
- Motor vehicle accidents – Traffic collisions between cars, trucks, and motorcycles frequently involve extreme forces that can fracture or crush vertebrae and damage the spinal cord which transmits nerve signals from the brain to other parts of the body.
- Slip and fall accidents – Unsafe conditions on a property such as loose steps, torn carpet, loose stair railings, inadequate lighting or unattended spills on the floor can increase the likelihood of slip and fall accidents that result in spinal cord injuries.
- Workplace accidents – At a workplace or job site, a worker may suffer spinal injuries as a result of a fall from heights, being struck by heavy equipment, crush accidents, and other incidents. An injured employee may access workers’ compensation insurance benefits to provide for medical care and other benefits.
- Sports and recreation accidents – High-impact sports and recreational activities such as football, skateboarding, diving, and skiing frequently result in orthopedic injuries and may cause serious trauma to the spinal cord.
- Unsafe product accidents – Some spinal cord injuries are caused by defective automobile components such as faulty brakes that contribute to catastrophic loss-of-control accidents.
- Medical malpractice – A negligent medical provider can leave a patient with preventable spinal cord injuries by committing surgical errors, administering incorrect medications, or using improper immobilization techniques.
- Nursing home abuse – When nursing home residents do not receive proper care and attention, they may fall and sustain spinal cord injuries after walking across unsafe floors, bathing unattended, or wandering off unattended.
Types of Spinal Cord Injuries
The effects of a spinal cord injury can vary significantly depending on the type and level of the injury. Spinal cord injuries are divided into two main types and four levels.
The two types of spinal cord injuries include:
- Complete spinal cord injuries – A complete spinal cord injury occurs when the spinal cord is fully severed, and the brain can no longer transmit nerve signals below the site of the injury. Victims with complete spinal cord injuries lose all sensation and motor function below the point of the injury.
- Incomplete spinal cord injuries – An incomplete spinal cord injury occurs when the spinal cord can still transmit limited signals from the brain below the point of injury. Patients with Incomplete spinal cord injuries often retain some feeling and motor function below the injury site.
The level of a spinal cord injury refers to the section of the spinal cord that is damaged. The four levels of spinal cord injuries include:
- Cervical spinal cord injuries – The cervical spinal cord is located in the neck. An injury to the cervical spinal cord is the most severe type of spinal cord injury. It can leave patients with complete loss of function and loss of sensation in all limbs. This condition is known as tetraplegia or quadriplegia.
- Thoracic spinal cord injuries – The thoracic spinal cord is located in the upper back and mid-back. Victims of thoracic spinal cord injuries may be able to use their arms and hands but frequently lose function in the lower halves of their bodies.
- Lumbar spinal cord injuries – The lumbar spinal cord is located in the lower back. Lumbar spinal cord injuries typically cause loss of function in the hips and legs, leaving patients wheelchair-bound or unable to walk without braces.
- Sacral spinal cord injuries – The sacral spinal cord is located at the base of the spine near the pelvis. A sacral spinal cord injury can affect function and sensation in the hips, buttocks, and the back of the thighs. Many sacral spinal cord injury patients can relearn to walk with physical therapy.
Symptoms of Spinal Cord Injuries
Depending on the type and level of a spinal cord injury, patients may exhibit one or more of the following symptoms:
- Pain or stinging in the neck, head, or back
- A twisted or unnaturally positioned neck or back
- Difficulty breathing or coughing
- Weakness, loss of coordination, or paralysis
- Numbness or tingling in the hands, fingers, feet, or toes
- Loss of sensation, including the ability to feel hot or cold
- Loss of motor function
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
- Exaggerated reflexes or muscle spasms
- Difficulty walking or maintaining balance
- Changes in sexual function
What Damages Can You Receive in a Spinal Cord Injury Lawsuit?
If you sustained a spinal cord injury due to someone else’s negligence, you shouldn’t be responsible for the financial consequences of their actions. Our Summerville personal injury attorneys can help you file a spinal cord injury lawsuit to seek the following types of compensation:
- Medical bills – Any medical bills you incur as a result of the spinal cord injury. This includes bills for ambulance rides, hospital stays, doctor visits, prescription medications, physical therapy, and durable medical equipment such as a wheelchair, crutches, leg braces, or other appliances.
- Lost wages – If you are forced to miss work for an extended period of time and lose income while you recover from your spinal cord injury, you may be entitled to compensation for your lost wages.
- Pain and suffering – The subjective costs of the physical pain, emotional suffering, and losses in quality of life you endure due to the spinal cord injury.
- Incidental expenses – Out-of-pocket expenses you incur, such as the costs of transportation to and from medical appointments and physical therapy.
- Future losses – The cost of future losses includes the estimated costs of future medical care you will likely need, as well as the projected value of losses in your lifetime earning capacity.
Seeking Compensation for a Spinal Cord Injury in Summerville
If you are coping with a spinal cord injury, it is helpful to understand your legal options and whether you have a right to seek compensation. You will need to explore all your financial options to cover the medical expenses associated with a spinal cord injury.
After a spinal cord injury accident, you can:
- Contact a Summerville spinal cord injury lawyer – The attorneys of Joye Law Firm can evaluate your situation, discuss your options, and provide dependable legal advice during a free, no-risk consultation.
- Be careful about what you say to others – If you contact an insurance provider after your spinal cord injury, watch what you say. Any inconsistencies or offhand apologies could damage your case. It’s best to have a lawyer communicate on your behalf.
- Avoid social media – Don’t post comments on social media about your accident or injuries while your case is pending. Anything you post may be used by insurance companies and defense attorneys to challenge the seriousness of your injury or your right to compensation.
Why Hire a Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer?
Spinal cord injury cases typically involve complex medical issues and are high-dollar claims. A spinal cord injury survivor will be at a disadvantage trying to navigate the claims process without experienced legal representation.
At Joye Law Firm, we can help you by:
- Conducting a thorough investigation to uncover supporting evidence and determine who should be held liable
- Identifying all applicable insurance coverage and potential sources of compensation to maximize your financial recovery
- Working with medical specialists and accident reconstruction specialists to demonstrate how the accident occurred and the long-lasting effect on your life
- Managing important legal deadlines
- Communicating with insurance companies and other attorneys on your behalf
- Negotiating for the full settlement you deserve
- Representing you in court, if you are forced to sue for fair compensation
Contact a Summerville Spinal Cord Injury Attorney Today
With more than 50 years in business, Joye Law Firm has established a reputation for helping injured people overcome some of life’s most difficult challenges. Our attorneys are compassionate and knowledgeable and have received numerous professional honors for their legal abilities. Every serious injury case has unique facts, and past results are not predictive of future outcomes. Still, we are proud of the strong record of results we have delivered. The results show our experience handling serious injury cases and the concerted effort we make to serve people who turn to us for help.
Call us at (888) 324-3100 or contact us online for a free case review.