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St. Louis Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer

Spinal cord injuries are among the most devastating injuries our firm sees in our car accident clients. Talk to a Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer for Free 24/7.

St. Louis spinal cord injury lawyer

These types of injuries have a wide range of symptoms, from minor pain that goes away with treatment to total paralysis from a broken back. Even with minor spinal cord injuries, the pain that is associated with it can reappear months or years after the accident. If you were the victim of a St. Louis car accident and are now attempting to readjust to life with a spinal cord injury, contact a St. Louis car accident lawyer at our law firm as soon as possible!

High-speed car crashes are one of the leading causes of spinal injuries thanks to the very high level of force that is created. If your injury was caused by the reckless disregard of another driver, do not hesitate to file a claim for damages with a St. Louis spinal cord injury lawyer.

Between 12,000 and 20,000 new patients are treated for SCI each year. Of these, 46% are estimated to have been caused by a car accident. The force created in a catastrophic crash goes directly to the head, neck, and back, which often causes the spine to fracture.

When your spine absorbs the impact of a car crash, the discs will often displace or fracture. When blood cells rupture, nearby organs become damaged. The spinal cavity swells in defense, cutting off blood and vital oxygen to the area. The affected nerves and neurons are severed, causing a break in the connection between your brain and all of the body parts below the point of injury. If the swelling is not reduced in time, this condition will leave you paralyzed from the point of injury downwards.

Spinal Cord Injury Statistics

In the U.S., it is estimated that about 12,000 cases of spinal cord injuries are reported every year – which amounts to around 30 injuries a day. These injuries can be caused by slips and falls, birth-related injuries, sports-related accidents, and motor vehicle accidents. According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCISC), about one-third of all spinal cord injuries are caused by car accidents, making auto accidents the leading cause of spinal cord injuries.

Complete Spinal Cord Injuries

Complete spinal cord injury causes complete loss of function of the body from below the area of injury on the spine. These types of injuries can result in:

  • Paraplegia – Paraplegia refers to the complete loss of motor and sensory function in the lower extremities of the body.
  • Quadriplegia – Quadriplegia refers to complete loss of motor and sensory function in the torso and the four limbs.

Recovery from complete spinal cord injuries is rare and often results in permanent disability. Extensive rehabilitation, reconstructive surgery, and physical therapy can help an injured person regain a certain level of independence with the assistance of a wheelchair.

Partial Spinal Cord Injuries

Partial or incomplete spinal cord injuries are more common. Such injuries are characterized by limited motor or sensory functioning of the body from below the injured area of the spine. At times, certain functions that are hampered during an injury can be regained after the injury heals. At times, the extent of injury cannot be determined until symptoms begin affecting the regular functioning of a person’s body. Partial spinal cord injuries include:

  • Anterior cord syndrome – spinal cord injuries to the front of the spine causing loss of temperature sensation, inability to feel pain, and loss of sensory functions of areas below the spot of injury.
  • Posterior cord syndrome – spinal cord injuries to the back of the spine causing loss of temperature sensation and coordination and the inability to feel pain.
  • Central cord syndrome – injuries to the center of the spine causing loss of functionality in the arms.
  • BrownSequard syndrome (BSS) – injury caused on either side of the spine, causing loss of motor function and retention of sensory function on one side and retention of motor function and loss of sensory function on the other side of the body.
  • Cauda equina lesion – partial or complete impairment of sensation caused due to injury to the nerve end grouping in between the first and second lumbar region.

How To File a Successful Spinal Cord Injury Claim

Spinal cord claims may fall under the ‘personal injury’ category, but these types of claims are often completely different from the rest.

This has to do with the injury itself. As we’ve discussed, spinal cord damage often has a more serious impact on people, not to mention the fact that full recovery in these cases is highly unlikely. As a result, there are a lot of different things you need to consider if you or a loved one has suffered a spinal cord injury.

Spinal cord injury claims require careful consideration due to their complexity and the significant impact on the victim’s life. A St. Louis spinal cord injury lawyer can help navigate through the intricacies of such claims, ensuring all factors such as medical costs, therapy, lost wages, and pain and suffering are duly accounted for in the settlement.

The Severity of the Injury Influences the Settlement

Victims who have suffered a spinal cord injury often get a much higher settlement than an average personal injury claim. The reason is that these injuries can completely change a person’s life and affect them in all aspects, from losing their job and financial stability to experiencing high levels of suffering and perhaps even the need for permanent care.

When you negotiate a settlement for a spinal injury claim, you must take into account:

  • The costs of medical treatments, both past, present, and future
  • Cost of therapy or rehabilitation
  • Costs of nursing care if needed
  • Costs of any special equipment you may need, such as a wheelchair, and even home changes to make the injured person’s home accessible to their new condition
  • Lost wages if the person cannot return to work
  • Pain and suffering, which are usually reflected by the changes in the victim’s quality of life

These are all complex factors, some of which don’t really come with a price tag. For instance, the cost of a wheelchair can be easily added to the settlement, as well as medical bills, but some matters, especially those that have to deal with pain and suffering, are abstract. As a result, you will need to negotiate with the insurance company to make sure the settlement accounts for these losses as well.

How to File a Successful Claim

To file a claim, you first need to identify the at-fault party, such as the driver who crashed into you and led to the injury. Then, you can file a claim with their insurance company and start the claims process.

At this time, you will essentially have to make your case. To get a good settlement, you will need:

  • Proof that the at-fault party really is at fault (video surveillance, witness testimonies, etc.)
  • Proof of all the costs this accident has caused, as well as projected future costs
  • Expert testimonies, especially when it comes to establishing projected costs and pain and suffering

Since a good part of the settlement will be established through negotiations, it’s important to go into this process prepared. You should get in touch with an experienced attorney. An experienced lawyer can successfully negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf.

Contact a St. Louis Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer

Whether your spinal cord injury results in complete paralysis or some limited movement, our firm can help you recover your damages. In spinal cord injury cases, the cost of future medical care and occupational therapy will be a big portion of the settlement. This is due to the constant medical care or therapy you may need to try and resume a life similar to the one you had before the accident.

If your spinal cord injury was the result of another driver’s negligent behavior, contact our experienced legal team. Not only will our skilled St. Louis spinal cord injury lawyers help you recover your past medical expenses, but we can also work to get you compensation for ongoing medical expenses as well.

Free Consultation with a St. Louis Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer

Don’t talk to an insurance claims adjuster before speaking with The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. We can help you avoid making statements that may affect the outcome of your case. The consultation is free; you don’t pay unless we get you money!

Free Consultation (314) 361-4242

Frequently Asked Questions About Spinal Cord Injuries

What is a spinal cord injury?

A spinal cord injury (SCI) is damage to the spinal cord that results in a loss of function, such as mobility or feeling. The spinal cord does not have to be severed for a loss of functioning to occur.

How are spinal cord injuries caused by car accidents?

In car accidents, SCIs can occur from direct trauma to the spine or from secondary factors such as bleeding, swelling, inflammation, and fluid accumulation in or around the spinal cord.

What are the symptoms of a spinal cord injury?

Symptoms can range from pain or pressure in the back or neck, paralysis, weakness, incoordination, and numbness to more severe issues like loss of bladder or bowel control, difficulty breathing, and changes in sexual function.

What should I do if I suspect a spinal cord injury after a car accident?

It is crucial to remain as still as possible and seek emergency medical attention immediately. Moving a person with a suspected SCI can lead to further damage.

Are all spinal cord injuries permanent?

Not all SCIs result in permanent damage. Some individuals may experience a complete recovery, while others may have residual effects that can range from mild dysfunction to complete paralysis.

What types of compensation can I seek if I’ve suffered an SCI in a car accident?

You may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, loss of future earning capacity, pain and suffering, and possibly punitive damages.

How can a lawyer help me if I’ve suffered a spinal cord injury in a car accident?

A lawyer can help navigate the complex legal and insurance issues, advocate on your behalf, and ensure that you receive the maximum compensation for your injuries and losses.

How long do I have to file a claim for a spinal cord injury in Missouri?

In Missouri, you typically have five years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit. However, it’s best to consult with a lawyer as soon as possible to protect your rights.

What if my loved one suffered a fatal spinal cord injury in a car accident?

If a loved one has died from an SCI sustained in a car accident, you may have a wrongful death claim. A lawyer can help you understand your rights and the process for filing a claim.

Can I still receive compensation if I was partially at fault for the accident?

Missouri follows a pure comparative fault rule, meaning you can still recover damages even if you are found to be partially at fault, although your compensation will be reduced by your percentage of fault.

Free Consultation with a St. Louis Car Accident Lawyer

Don’t talk to an insurance claims adjuster before speaking with The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. We can help you avoid making statements that may affect the outcome of your case. The consultation is free; you don’t pay unless we get you money!

Free Consultation (314) 361-4242