Florida Spinal Cord Injuries
Because of its position within the body, any injury to the spinal cord has the potential to be life-changing. They usually occur due to degenerative disease or blunt trauma – but if the trauma occurred due to another person’s negligence, the injured plaintiff may be able to file a claim against them in court. Spinal injuries can affect countless other bodily organs and functions, and if you have experienced one, you have the right to try and recover what you have been through.
Spinal Injuries Can Lead To Other Health Problems
Information from the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCISC) shows that on average, approximately 17,800 new spinal injuries occur each year, and somewhere around 300,000 people live with spinal injuries at any one time. More than two-thirds of all new spinal injuries are due to either vehicle crashes or falls, with acts of violence also comprising another significant cause. The most common type of sustained injury is incomplete tetraplegia (that is, partial loss of function in all four limbs, as opposed to total loss of function).
Spinal injuries affect the point of injury, but they also affect all the nerves that connect to the spinal cord at points below. This means that if a person sustains a spinal injury, they may lose all function below that point, leading not only to paralysis, but also to conditions like incontinence, inability to regulate respiratory or circulatory functions, and sexual dysfunction. The bills, missed work, and the physical and mental toll can add up.
If you have experienced a spinal cord injury, the prospect of filing suit can be very overwhelming, particularly if your injury was acquired in an auto accident. Florida is a no-fault state for auto insurance, meaning that most accident cases must be decided by filing an insurance claim with one’s personal injury protection (PIP) carrier. However, a case that involves spinal injuries will generally be serious enough to lift the tort immunity in place, letting you file suit against the person who allegedly caused your injuries. The immunity is lifted by an injury that is “significant and permanent” – and damage to one’s spinal cord is almost always permanent.
Be aware that if your injury is significant and permanent, you are legally permitted to seek not only economic damages like lost wages and medical bills, but also non-economic damages such as pain and suffering. Economic damages are those which can be quantified, or at least can be estimated closely; non-economic damages are much more vague and often require expert opinions to determine. An experienced attorney can help you determine the best way to structure your claim, so that you have the best possible chance of recovery.
Contact A Tampa Spinal Cord Injury Attorney
Spinal injuries are among those with the most life-changing potential due to their severity. If you have sustained one, know that you are not alone, and you deserve the right to recover for what you have suffered. The Tampa spine injury attorneys from the Rinaldo Law Group can offer compassionate and understanding representation during what can be an overwhelming time in your and your family’s lives. Contact us today for a free consultation.