Washington DC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer
Damage to the spinal cord is among the most devastating injuries a person could suffer. Because the spinal cord houses the nerves that allow the brain to communicate with the body, these injuries can leave a person unable to move their body below the damaged area.
When someone else’s negligence causes an accident that results in another person suffering a spinal cord injury, the injured person could seek compensation from the negligent party. Catastrophic injury lawyers assist people in claiming damages from negligent parties.
Whether damages might be available in a specific case depends on several different variables. A Washington, D.C. spinal cord injury lawyer could consult with an injured person and their family to determine whether damages could be available in their particular circumstances.
Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries
The spinal cord supports the entire skeletal structure of the human body, but it is surprisingly fragile. Spinal cord injuries can happen in a variety of ways.
Motor vehicle accidents are the most common cause of spinal cord injury in persons under age 45. Falls are the most likely way for older Americans to sustain a spinal cord injury. Gunshot wounds, diving accidents, surgical accidents, and birth injuries also could result in spinal cord injuries.
Negligence could be at the root of many accidents that lead to spinal cord injuries. For example, negligence is often behind car accidents and falls in public places. Diving accidents in pools might result from negligence, and medical malpractice is a form of negligence. An experienced plaintiff’s attorney could identify incidents of likely negligence that might have contributed to a client’s spinal cord injury and prepare a claim for damages from the negligent party.
Seeking Damages For a Spinal Cord Injury
A catastrophic event like a spinal cord injury can tax even the most well-resourced family. Most health insurance does not cover all the expenses that go along with the treatment and rehabilitation of a spinal cord injury. Copays alone could amount to thousands of dollars.
An award of damages from the negligent party could help support an injured person and their family through rehabilitation and adjustment to living with a spinal cord injury. Damages can cover past and future medical expenses and rehabilitation, loss of earnings, the injured person’s pain and suffering, and all the costs associated with adapting a family’s home and vehicle to accommodate the injury. A seasoned lawyer could help a family document all the losses and expenses associated with the spinal cord injury.
Family members also might be entitled to damages due to their loved one’s spinal cord injury. If the injured person is no longer able to contribute financially to the household in the way they once did, family members could seek damages for loss of support. If the injured person cannot participate in family life any longer, family members could seek damages for loss of companionship. Spouses might seek damages for loss of consortium if the injury interferes with the couple’s sexual relationship.
Negligent Plaintiff Loses Right to Damages
Washington, D.C. continues to follow a harsh doctrine that most states have abandoned. Called the pure contributory negligence doctrine, it prevents a negligent plaintiff from collecting damages from any other party, even when the plaintiff’s negligence is minimal compared to another party’s negligence.
Negligent parties and their insurers might try to use this doctrine to their advantage by arguing that a plaintiff’s negligence contributed to their injury. An aggressive legal professional could present evidence showing that the plaintiff bore no responsibility for the accident that injured them, and all the blame rests with the defendant.
Let a Washington DC Spinal Cord Injury Attorney Work for You
For many families, the weeks and months after a spinal cord injury are a time when all of their energy is directed toward adjusting to their new life. Dealing with the financial implications of the injury is something they might put on the back burner. However, this could be a grave mistake because the Code of the District of Columbia §12-301(8) allows injured people only three years from the date of their accident to bring a lawsuit.
Do not risk losing your right to get damages from the negligent parties who caused the accident that injured you or your loved one. Contact a Washington, D.C. spinal cord injury lawyer as soon as possible to begin the process of seeking fair and appropriate compensation.