- April 28, 2023
- Jed Strong
- Spinal Injury
A spinal injury can forever change your life. Understanding what qualifies as a spinal injury lawsuit in Washington State is where a lawyer can help you.
If your spinal injury results from negligence, you may want to pursue compensation for your damages. The specific details of your accident, such as the how, when, who, and why, are critical elements of civil cases.
Spinal injuries caused by negligence are expensive in terms of financial, physical, and emotional costs. Let us take a closer look at what qualifies as a spinal injury lawsuit in Washington State:
Spinal Injuries Involving Negligence
Hazardous conditions and dangerous drivers are two examples of potential negligence. When someone fails to use the same care a reasonable person would use in a similar situation, they are negligent. Their negligence can therefore lead to liability for a victim’s damages.
Spinal injuries involving negligence can occur in the following situations:
- Motor vehicle accidents: Cars, trucks, and motorcyclists can become dangerous weapons when operated by careless drivers. Distracted, drunk, aggressive, or drowsy drivers can cause traumatic accidents, leaving victims with spinal cord injuries.
- Bicycle and pedestrian accidents: These same types of drivers place bicyclists and pedestrians at risk for spinal cord injuries. The lack of protection by these vulnerable road users can result in life-altering spinal harm.
- Slip and fall accidents: A slip and fall accident involves striking a hard, unforgiving surface. Restaurants, stores, and other businesses owe patrons a safe dining and shopping environment. However, wet floors, torn carpets, and stairs with no railing can cause a fall that results in a spinal injury.
- Workplace/construction accidents: Unsafe working conditions, lack of safety equipment, and other factors can cause spinal injury.
- Defective products: Some dangerous products distributed without warning or recall can place users at risk of severe injury. Defective products that may result in a spinal cord injury include malfunctioning playground equipment or a faulty car part.
- Sports injuries: From youth football to gymnastics, spinal injuries involving negligence demand accountability. Negligent coaches, players, or defective safety gear may qualify you for a civil lawsuit.
A personal injury lawyer can review your case to determine if negligence was the driving factor in causing your spinal injury. If so, your lawyer can then proceed with a spinal injury lawsuit. During their investigation, your lawyer will identify all parties liable for your spinal injury.
A spinal injury can forever impact your quality of life. If you face mounting medical costs and a loss of income due to negligence, a Washington state spinal injury attorney may be able to help you.
Spinal Injury Damages
The spinal cord receives and relays information to the brain concerning movement and sensation. When someone suffers a spinal injury, this communication can break down, resulting in paralysis.
Adjusting to life in a wheelchair or powerchair brings a host of other living requirements. Home modifications are one example. Remodeling a home is an unexpected cost, as is purchasing or modifying accessible transportation.
A spinal injury can result in significant damages such as:
- Medical costs: expenses relating to accident care and ongoing costs such as powerchair replacements throughout the year.
- Lost wages: due to recovery time or loss of future earnings if unable to return to work.
- Mental anguish: the emotional and psychological harm resulting from accidents and injury, such as depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues.
A study led by a team of researchers from Michigan Medicine found that spinal injury patients have a nearly 80 percent increased risk of mental health issues. The researchers cite chronic pain as a leading contributor to this problem.
The Washington state statute of limitations for pursuing a personal injury case is three years. The time for filing your spinal injury lawsuit begins the moment your injury occurs.
If the statute of limitations expires before you file your lawsuit, you generally have no further legal options. However, a Washington state spinal injury lawyer can protect your best interests by ensuring your case is filed promptly.
Thirty-six months may seem like a long time. However, the immediate changes to your life can cause you to lose track of time. Therefore, spinal injury victims of negligence must take swift action to start legal action against those responsible for their harm.
Spinal Injury Accident Evidence
Proof of Negligence is Key for Each Case
To build your case, your attorney needs to know the details regarding your accident. Sharing as much information as possible is crucial when fighting for a fair settlement.
Common types of accident evidence include:
- Police reports
- Store management reports
- Accident scene photographs and videos
- Contact information for witnesses
- Medical reports relating to your spinal injury
- Proof of lost wages and future earnings from your employer.
Once an insurance company or business learns of a possible lawsuit, they may pressure you to sign a settlement. Therefore, it is vital that you do not sign anything without contacting an attorney first.
The attorney you hire can deal with insurance representatives and anyone connected to your case. Your attorney can also gather evidence, visit the accident scene, and take other steps necessary to prove negligence.
A spinal injury accident can occur in seconds yet change your life forever. If a drunk driver, negligent property owner, or defective product caused your spinal injury, you have legal rights under Washington state law.
How Much is a Spinal Injury Lawsuit Worth?
It is impossible to predict the outcome of your spinal injury lawsuit. Many personal injury cases settle outside of court. However, if your case goes before a judge and jury, the amount awarded, if any, depends upon the details of your case.
Pursuing compensation for your spinal injury is a serious matter. However, accepting less than you deserve may protect an insurance company’s best interests but not yours. In fact, should you suffer complications later, you cannot pursue additional funds for your new medical care needs.
According to the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, the lifetime costs of living with a spinal injury can cost millions. Ensuring you have the funds you need now and possibly later requires fighting for the best possible outcome of your case.
When negligence occurs, a spinal injury lawsuit is your right under Washington state law. However, civil laws are complex and best left to a professional and experienced spinal injury attorney.
Satisfied clients and successful case results are two factors that can help you when choosing a lawyer. In addition, a free case evaluation opens the door to learning more about how to proceed with your spinal injury lawsuit.
Strong Law: Washington State Spinal Injury Attorneys
A spinal injury is a catastrophic injury that affects all facets of your life. When caused by the negligent acts of others, it is an injury that deserves justice.
Strong Law serves spinal injury victims with the utmost respect and compassion. Our experience working with accident victims makes us the right team on your side.
Insurance companies are often reluctant to pay accident victims what they need and deserve. Your spinal injury attorney will stand up to insurance companies on your behalf.
Spinal injuries demand a dedicated focus. Rehabilitation, therapies, and more can fill your days. Leave the intricate details of your Washington state spinal injury lawsuit to skillful professionals.
Start your legal journey toward possible compensation by scheduling a free case consultation today. Call Strong Law at (206) 741-1053 today.