A spine injury is an injury that an individual suffers to the spinal region of their body. This area of the body includes numerous different parts, for example, spinal nerves and spinal discs.
Spinal injuries are typically very serious. This is because a large part of the body’s motor system works in conjunction with the spine and the spinal cord.
An injury to the spine may occur in conjunction with other types of injuries, for example:
In some cases, a spine injury may lead to long-term issues, for example, the loss of an individual’s ability to earn an income.
What Are Some Common Causes of Spine Injuries?
A spinal injury can result from numerous different causes or events, which may include:
In certain cases, spinal damage may result from other factors, for example, toxic exposure or chemical exposure that results in nerve damage. These types of cases are often more complex and may require more extensive evidence that spans over a long period of time.
What Is a Personal Injury Claim?
In a personal injury claim, a plaintiff alleges that they sustained an injury because of an act or a failure to act by the defendant. Personal injuries can be mental, physical, or both.
The court handling the claim may award the plaintiff a damages award. Examples of mental health injuries may include the emotional pain and anguish that an individual sustained in an accident.
Examples of physical injuries an individual may suffer include injuries to limbs, organs, or other parts of the body. A personal injury does not have to show up instantly and, instead, may develop over time.
Some personal injuries occur intentionally, such as when a defendant injures the victim deliberately or intends to commit an act that results in an injury. Personal injuries, however, may also occur by accident, or unintentionally.
If an individual’s unintentional injury results from another individual’s negligence, a plaintiff may file a lawsuit based on the defendant’s negligent behavior. Examples of negligence cases commonly include:
What Are the Elements of Personal Injury?
Personal injury lawyers are attorneys who help individuals who have suffered injuries obtain compensation for their injuries from the individual who caused them. Personal injury cases can be very complicated.
It is important to be aware that personal injury law does not involve criminal law. When an individual files a personal injury claim, it is filed in civil court.
In some cases, criminal actions can be filed separately, if the incident that resulted in the personal injury was of a criminal nature. Personal injury claims can fall into one of three categories:
Each of these types of personal injury claims has its own set of elements that a plaintiff must prove in order for the injured party to prevail.
Can I Recover Damages for a Spine Injury?
In many cases, spinal injuries can be the basis for personal injury cases. Spinal injury cases often result in various different types of legal remedies, for example, lost wages, hospital bills, and other costs.
In many cases, recovering damages for spine injuries will likely be based on the theory of negligence. Proving negligence theory requires evidence that:
- The defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care;
- The duty of care was breached; and
- The breach of that duty was the direct cause of the plaintiff’s spinal injury.
Additionally, the spinal injury must be able to be calculated to a specific dollar amount. If the damages are difficult to calculate, it may hurt the plaintiff’s case.
What Is the Duty to Reduce Damages in a Personal Injury Claim?
If an individual files a personal injury lawsuit, they may request an award of compensatory damages to compensate them for injuries and property damage that was caused by the negligence of another individual. The law, however, imposes on the injured individual an obligation to do everything that they can to minimize their damages.
This means that the injured party should take steps to reduce or avoid any further injuries or damages that may be connected to the accident. Even if an individual was in no way at fault for the events that caused their injury or property damage, they still have an obligation to take reasonable steps to avoid further losses.
The individual has to do what they are reasonably able to do to limit the consequences of their injuries. The legal standard used to evaluate whether an injured individual has met their duty to minimize their injuries is to review whether the individual took the same steps that a reasonable, average individual would have in the same or similar situation.
This duty is called the duty to mitigate damages. Accident victims have a duty to minimize, or mitigate, their damages by seeking professional medical treatment for their injuries.
If medical treatment would have helped them reduce or recover the severity of their symptoms, the court or jury will expect the individual to seek medical treatment as part of their attempts to get better. In a lawsuit based on negligence, the plaintiff has the burden to prove the economic value of their losses due to the injury or property damage.
Defendants who claim that the plaintiff did not mitigate their damages have the burden of proving it.
What Are Some Examples of a Failure to Reduce Personal Injury Damages?
Examples of a plaintiff failing to reduce their personal injury damages may include:
- Not seeking medical attention after an accident;
- Refusing the medical treatment recommended by doctors;
- Not following or disregarding medical advice;
- Refusing recommended surgery; or
- Engaging in high risk or unreasonable behavior that could aggravate injuries.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims?
There are statutes of limitations (SOLs) that apply to all types of personal injury claims. SOLs are laws that require injured parties to file their claims within a certain period of time.
Once the SOL expires, an injured individual may not be able to bring a lawsuit against the other party for their injuries. These laws are intended to reduce the likelihood of false claims as well as to preserve evidence.
It is important for an individual to be aware of the SOLs that may apply in their case in order to prevent them from losing any potential compensation for their injuries. It is important to note, however, that the statute of limitations for different types of personal injury claims vary by state.
Because every state has its own laws, an individual should consult with an attorney who can inform them of the laws in their state.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with a Spine Injury Case?
If you have suffered a spinal injury, it may be severe and may lead to serious legal issues. It is important to consult with a personal injury lawyer to determine the statute of limitations that applies to your claim.
Your lawyer will be able to provide you with guidance, legal advice, and representation in your case. These types of cases often require medical expert testimony, which is best presented to the court or jury by an attorney.