Have you suffered a spinal cord injury after an accident? Even a minor spinal cord injury can cause chronic pain and affect your independence and physical abilities. Victims of spinal cord injury accidents can file a personal injury lawsuit against the party that caused the accident. Call our Alpharetta spinal cord lawyers if you’ve been injured in Alpharetta or another Fulton County city. You can learn more in a free consultation with an Alpharetta spinal cord injury lawyer from Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C.. Call us today at 678-213-2401.
What Is Considered a Serious Spinal Cord Injury?
Any spinal cord injury could be considered serious, as it could affect your body’s systems. Many spinal cord injuries are trauma-based, occurring due to forces outside the body. This could include blunt force trauma, like being in a car accident or suffering a nasty fall while playing sports. Or, the trauma could be penetrative, which may happen if someone is struck by flying debris or a gunshot. Surgical complications could also cause serious spinal cord injury.
Spinal cord injuries are typically classified into two categories: incomplete and complete. These ratings are references to how much sensation or feeling is lost.
An incomplete spinal cord injury leaves the injured person with some movement control and feeling below the injury site. The long-term prognosis for recovery varies widely. Some people may recover fully with the right medical care, but many face a lifetime of pain and suffering. Others may never recover their full function.
Complete spinal cord injuries are those in which the injured person has no control or feeling at all below the injury site. The injured person may be unable to care for themselves without help, requiring in-home care or accommodation in a nursing home.
Types of Spinal Cord Injuries
The location of the injury on the spine generally classifies spinal cord injuries. The four levels of spinal cord injuries are:
- Cervical spinal cord injury. This damage to the spine above the shoulders can affect cervical vertebrae C1-C8. An injury in this area affects breathing, the arms, hands, head, and neck. A complete spinal cord injury in this area could result in a total loss of movement below the injury site, and any injury above C4 may require the use of a ventilator.
- Thoracic spinal cord injury. This portion of the spine is made up of the T1-T12 vertebrae. This is the area from the upper chest/ shoulders to the middle of the back or the start of the abdominal muscles. Shoulder, arm, and hand function are often compromised with this type of injury, and paraplegia may result.
- Lumbar spinal cord injury. The lumbar spine is made up of the L1- L5 vertebrae. Injury to this part of the spine can affect the legs, hips, lower back, and bowel and bladder control. Paraplegia may be a result of an injury at this level.
- Sacral spinal cord injury. This is an injury to the S1-S5 vertebrae at the bottom of the spine. An injury here affects the hips, legs, groin, buttocks, bladder, and bowel. Many people retain their ability to walk, although the quality of their movement could be compromised.
What Is the Lifetime Cost of a Spinal Cord Injury?
Medical bills from a spinal cord injury quickly add up. The lifetime cost of your spinal cord injury depends on the location and severity. According to the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation’s website, the estimated cost of a spinal cord injury can be $1,113,990 to $4,724,181, depending on the injury level and the injured person’s age.
What Is the Average Amount of Compensation in Spinal Cord Injury Cases?
There can’t be a determination of an “average” amount of compensation for a spinal cord injury because every injury, treatment plan, and accident is different. You and your spinal cord injury lawyer can file an insurance claim or lawsuit to pursue both economic and non-economic compensation.
Economic compensation covers items with specific costs attached and can include:
- Medical care, like surgery, hospital stay, prescription medication, and specialist care
- Rehabilitation, like physical or occupational therapy
- Treatment for related mental health issues like PTSD, depression, or anxiety
- Lost wages from time missed at work
- Loss of earnings potential if you can’t work the same or any job
- Property damage, such as a damaged vehicle
- Modifications to your house or vehicle to accommodate your disability
- Cost of long-term care, like paying for a home health aide or a nursing home
Non-economic compensation covers your intangible losses, like:
- Reduced quality of life
- Loss of consortium or companionship
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma or mental anguish
How a Lawyer from Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. Can Help with Your Spinal Cord Injury Case
An Alpharetta spinal cord injury lawyer from Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. can build a case proving the party that caused the accident was negligent. Proving the other party’s negligence caused your injury is the point of a personal injury lawsuit. It justifies your demand for compensation.
An attorney can also negotiate with the other party’s insurance company for a fair settlement to cover all your losses. They may send a demand letter or represent you in mediation. If your lawyer cannot get a fair negotiation settlement, they advocate for you in court.
Don’t try to handle your spinal cord injury case on your own. Call the seasoned spinal cord injury attorneys of Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. at 678-213-2401 for a free consultation today.
Many of our clients have pressing questions and concerns about their cases. We address the most common questions our Alpharetta spinal cord injury attorneys are asked below.
How much are legal fees in a spinal injury case?
We believe everyone should have access to skilled legal representation. That’s why we work on a contingency fee basis. That means our clients pay nothing upfront. When we get compensation for you, our fees will be an agreed-upon percentage of your compensation. If we don’t win your case, we don’t get paid.
How long do I have to file a spinal cord injury lawsuit in Georgia?
The statute of limitations in Georgia allows two years from the date of injury to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault party.
How long do spinal cord injury cases take?
If your case goes to trial, it could take over a year from the time you initially filed suit. However, suppose the facts are clearly in your favor. In that case, your injury is minor, and the other party is willing to negotiate a fair settlement. Your claim could be resolved within several months.