Georgia Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer
If you’ve suffered damage to your spinal cord in an accident, you know how devastating the consequences can be. Spinal injuries can be life-changing, robbing victims of basic quality of life, like the ability to walk or breathe on their own. Spinal cord injuries can also result in huge medical bills for victims and their families.
If you were injured due to someone else’s negligence, you may have legal options that can help you recover the money you need for a better life. Negligent and reckless parties, like reckless drivers, irresponsible property owners, and negligent doctors, cause spinal cord injuries far too often. If this has happened to you, it’s vital to contact a spinal cord injury lawyer who can help evaluate your next steps. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, the money you lost when you missed work, your pain and suffering, and more.
Start your financial recovery with our knowledgeable Atlanta back injury and spinal cord injury attorneys at Spaulding Law Firm. You can learn what steps you can take to hold the person who hurt you responsible for your losses. We may be able to help you recoup your medical costs, lost wages, future earnings, and more.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries
Some common causes of spinal cord injury include:
- Automobile accidents – According to the Mayo Clinic, almost half of all spinal cord injuries are caused by car wrecks each year.
- Sports injuries – Contact sports and diving into water that is too shallow can cause spinal cord injuries.
- Slips and falls – About a third of spinal injuries occur when a person slips or trips and falls.
- Alcohol consumption – Many spinal injuries are exacerbated by inebriation and the lack of coordination it causes.
- Birth injuries – Sometimes inappropriate care during the delivery process can cause spinal cord injury.
- Medical malpractice – Doctors or chiropractors may apply inappropriate medical procedures or fail to diagnose illness that results in spinal injury.
Symptoms of a Spinal Cord Injury
Spinal cord injuries can vary from relatively minor to catastrophic, including injuries that cause paralysis. The severity of the symptoms depends on where the spinal cord was injured and how severe the damage is. An injury to the upper vertebrae in the neck may result in complete paralysis and the need for a ventilator, while an injury to the lower vertebrae may affect the ability to use legs and the lower body.
The result of a traumatic spinal cord injury may be paralysis, and in some cases, death. If you’ve lost a close relative due to a spinal injury caused by negligence, you may be able to pursue a wrongful death claim.
Treatment for Spinal Cord Injury
If you’ve suffered a back injury, you know that its treatment can require intensive medical care. A doctor will determine the degree of care, taking into account factors like your age, the severity of the injury, where it is located on your spinal cord, and your unique requirements.
At the scene of the accident, persons with spinal injuries should be immobilized as much as possible to avoid further injury. First responders may strap them to a backboard and stabilize the neck for transport to the hospital. In some cases, the injury may require immediate surgery to fully evaluate the spinal cord and to secure any broken fragments of the vertebrae.
Other medical interventions may include:
- A ventilator to aid in breathing
- A catheter
- A feeding tube
Long-Term Effects of a Spinal Cord Injury
After your initial treatment and stabilization, your doctors may recommend a rehabilitation facility where a specialized team of nurses, doctors, and therapists can work with you to mitigate your pain. Some spinal injuries require you to relearn certain tasks with the help of dedicated medical professionals.
Rehabilitation can take anywhere from a few weeks to years, depending on the injury’s severity. That can be expensive.
Filing a Personal Injury Claim After a Spinal Cord Injury
Spinal Cord Injury Diagnosis DocumentIf your injury was caused by someone else, an attorney can help. They can investigate, document the facts of your case, and prove that the person who hurt you is legally responsible for your injury. You can demand that they pay for the economic and non-economic damages they caused.
A spinal cord injury may cost you and your family thousands of dollars in medical bills and missed work. If this has happened to you and your injury was caused by someone else’s negligence or recklessness, you can seek compensation by filing a personal injury claim.
The legal theory that attorneys like ours at Spaulding Injury Law work with is called liability, or legal responsibility. To hold someone liable, you must prove that whatever caused your injury was the fault of another person or entity.
Property owners and managers must take reasonable steps to ensure that no one can be injured while visiting their property. In Georgia, this falls under premises liability law.
For example, if you slip and fall in an Atlanta grocery store because a spill was not cleaned up properly, you could demand that the grocery store chain compensate you for injury caused by their negligence.
When you contact a spinal cord injury law firm like Spaulding Injury Law, we will discuss the circumstances surrounding your injury and help you determine the best avenue to take when filing a claim. We’ll evaluate who may be responsible, and therefore liable, for your injury, and what they may owe you as a result.
Georgia’s negligence laws allow for modified comparative fault, which means you may pursue a claim even if you are partially responsible for your own injury. For example, if you suffer a spinal cord injury after a car crash and a court finds that the crash was partially your fault, you may be awarded a percentage of the damages you suffered.
However, if you’re found to be responsible for 50 percent of the fault in the incident, you won’t be able to collect any compensation from the other party. Spaulding Injury Law will aggressively advocate so that you avoid blame for an injury that wasn’t your fault.
Your attorney will ask you to provide as much evidence as possible to help. Every document related to your injury, including medical records, proof of lost wages, and any other monetary costs you’ve incurred, will be an important part of your claim. Once they have a full picture of your accident and its consequences, your lawyer will develop a strong argument that proves the person or business that caused your injury are liable for their negligence.
It’s a good idea to avoid unnecessary discussions with insurance companies. They may use your statements against you by arguing that you are not actually injured seriously or that you caused the accident. You should also limit your contact with the at-fault party. Let your attorney take over these tricky communications.
Don’t wait too long to contact an attorney. In Georgia, there is a two-year statute of limitations for personal injury claims. After this deadline, you may not be able to recover the damages that you’re owed. An experienced spinal injury attorney can efficiently prepare your case and file your claim on time.
Filing for Disability After a Spinal Cord Injury
Victims with disabilities due to a spinal cord injury may be entitled to disability benefits from Social Security.
You must prove that your spinal cord injury prevents you from working to file for disability with the Social Security Administration. You will need medical records that show the evidence of the damage to your spinal cord. In order to receive support for a total disability, you must demonstrate the extent of your injury. You may need medical personnel’s testimony, imaging, and records of your surgeries and rehabilitation treatments.
Depending on the severity of your injury, you may qualify for a medical vocational allowance. Many spinal cord injury victims are not able to work in a traditional setting due to the severity of their injuries.
Filing for disability may be an important step in your financial recovery depending on the circumstances of your injury.
Compensation for a Spinal Cord Injury
If you want the maximum compensation possible for your spinal cord injury, then you need an experienced injury attorney on your side. At Spaulding Injury Law, we know how difficult it is to face a mounting pile of medical bills, as well as trying to support yourself and your family if you’re forced to miss work. Our attorneys have your best interests in mind and are focused on the goal of getting you the maximum amount of compensation possible.
When you file an injury claim, you demand that the person or persons responsible for your injury compensate you for your medical bills, the wages you have lost, and the money you will spend treating your injury in the future. You and your attorney will also ask for compensation that goes beyond your medical bills to cover non-economic damages, like your pain and suffering.
Your spinal injury attorney will try to account for all of the costs that your injury caused, from simple medical bills to more complicated, long term consequences. The trauma associated with your injuries is life-altering and you may need money to help with changes in your quality of life.
Your settlement may include money to cover the costs of wheelchairs, future rehabilitation, and other costs such as adding ramps to your home to improve accessibility. In a free consultation, Spaulding Injury Law can evaluate which of these damages you may be owed.
Frequently Asked Questions About Spinal Cord Injuries
Our spinal cord injury law firm sees many potential clients with questions about spinal cord injuries and their severity. We’ve answered some of the most basic ones here, but consult a qualified doctor or neurologist to discuss the extent and symptoms of your injury specifically. At Spaulding Injury Law, we can answer your questions about the legal implications of your injury during your free consultation.