Spinal cord injuries are devastating occurrences for both the injured person and their loved ones. Medical and other monetary expenses are huge, and the emotional fallout enormous. We’ve written a lot this week about spinal injuries and the law. If you or your loved one suffered a spinal cord injury due to the fault of another person, you may be worried about the legal ramifications of your injury. We put together this article to explain some of the basics.
A majority of personal injury lawsuits are based in a concept called negligence. Negligence indicates that another person failed to be careful towards others in their actions, and those actions caused injury to someone else.
Common examples include someone causing a motor vehicle accident or a landowner not fixing a stair that later caused someone to trip. In order to receive compensation, your lawsuit lawyer must prove negligence in a matter.
Lawsuit Attorneys and Their Defenses
If there is a personal injury lawsuit stemming from a spinal cord injury, there will also be an opposing set of lawyers. These lawyers often work for an insurance company or the person who caused your accident. While your attorney argues that your injuries are the fault of the wrong doing of another, these attorneys will be attempting to defend the person your lawyer is claiming is negligent. They will fight to defend that person.
Two of the more common ways a defense attorney will attempt to avoid a settlement in a spinal cord injury case is comparative/contributory negligence and assumption of risk.
This defense is based in the idea that the injured contributed to his or her own injury. For example, the defense lawsuit lawyer might argue that in a car accident, the injured party was either totally or partially at fault for causing the accident. This would take blame off the person who actually caused the injury. These types of issues are what are fought about in the personal injury lawsuit process.
Assumption of Risk
If the spinal cord injury happened in a situation like skiing, the defense attorney (or insurance company) might argue that if someone chooses to participate in a dangerous activity, they understand they risk they are facing.
How Does Compensation for Serious Spinal Cord Injuries Work?
Spinal cord injuries lawsuits tend to be more complex than other personal injury cases.
Because of the significant medical and life expenses, as well as the tragic emotional effects, compensation for spinal cord injuries tend to be large sums of money. This money compensation or “damages” as your attorney might call it, can be far more than just medical bills.
Damages in a spinal cord injury lawsuit can also include the cost of lifelong health care, necessary accommodations someone might need for their home, like ramps and restroom equipment, wheelchairs, caregiver salaries and other expenses. Sometimes these expenses are referred to as “pain and suffering.”
“Pain and Suffering” is a term used to generalize damages that are less tangible than a direct medical or equipment bill. The emotional suffering in spinal cord injuries are high, and so compensation can also be high in these cases.
We explain ‘pain and suffering’ HERE
High potential compensation usually also means a long and tedious legal battle in order to receive what you deserve. If you or your loved one has suffered a spinal cord injury, it is critical to find a knowledgeable and experienced Denver personal injury lawyer.
Check out our guide to finding a personal injury attorney HERE