Spinal cord injuries change a person’s life forever and can also affect the lives of all their loved ones. The effects can be physical, emotional, as well as financial in nature. When someone else’s negligence caused the accident that led to the spinal cord injury, the impact can be even more devastating. The injured person and their loved ones can consult an experienced catastrophic injury attorney like David E. Gordon to find out how to hold the negligent parties accountable.
Compensation might be available to help you and your family cope. A Cordova spinal cord injury lawyer can help you pursue claims against the responsible parties and their insurers.
Injuries to the spinal cord disrupt communication between the brain and the rest of the body. When the spinal cord is severed, the person loses all sensation and function below the point of the break. When the cord is damaged but not severed, the injured person could maintain some sensation and movement, while functioning might improve over time.
Many spinal cord injuries leave the person with paraplegia (unable to use their legs) or quadriplegia (unable to use their legs or arms). People with these conditions often must use a wheelchair or another mobility device for the rest of their lives.
In addition to causing paralysis of the limbs, spinal cord injuries can create other health problems, depending on the location of the damage. Difficulty with speech and respiratory problems are common. Loss of bowel and bladder control often accompanies spinal cord injury, as does sexual dysfunction. The cumulative stress of spinal cord injury on a body over time could lead to a shortened life span. A local spinal cord injury attorney like David can help account for all of these losses with filing suit.
Statutes of limitations are laws that define a timeframe when a court will hear cases about specific matters. Tennessee law allows an injured person only one year from the date of the injury to file a lawsuit seeking financial relief. An injured person might still be recovering in a hospital or rehabilitation facility when the period to bring a lawsuit expires. Seeking advice from a Cordova spine damage lawyer as soon as possible after an accident is the best way for an injured person to preserve his or her rights. Once the statute of limitations has passed, an injured person loses all leverage with responsible parties and their insurance companies.
Money cannot make up for all of the ramifications of a spinal cord injury but the intent is to put the person in the same position financially that would have existed if the injury had not occurred. Damages also provide money as compensation for the intangible losses that accompany spinal injury.
An attorney must provide proof of damages in the form of medical records and bills, receipts for out-of-pocket expenses, W2s, tax returns, expert opinions, testimony, and other evidence. Damages are recoverable to compensate for all medical expenses and costs of care to date and going forward, as well as lost wages, the value of lost fringe benefits, diminished future earning capacity, and rehabilitation costs. Recoverable damages could also include the expense of renovating a home to be wheelchair accessible and the costs of an appropriate vehicle.
Damages are also available to compensate for disfigurement, pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and loss of enjoyment of life. These losses are called non-economic damages, and Tennessee law limits them to one million dollars if the spinal cord injury left the person quadriplegic or paraplegic. However, the limits on non-economic damages do not apply if the at-fault party was drunk, acted intentionally, or was convicted of a felony for the act in question.
Recovering from a spinal cord injury and coming to terms with its effect on your life requires enormous effort. If you are in that situation, you and your loved ones already have a lot on your plate.
It is critical for someone whose injury resulted from someone else’s negligence to begin working to get compensation immediately. The most effective action is to talk with a Cordova spinal cord injury lawyer right away and have us work to seek justice on your behalf. Call the Law Office of David E. Gordon today.