When an accident has left you with paraplegia, you have to adjust every aspect of your life. Paraplegia has significant consequences for your health, ability to work, and social opportunities.
Accidents that lead to paralysis and paraplegia often result from someone’s negligence. When another party’s careless or reckless conduct was a factor in the incident, you have the legal right to seek compensation from the negligent parties. However, you must act quickly.
Speak with a Baton Rouge paraplegia injury lawyer as soon as possible after the accident. An experienced paralysis injury attorney at Tomeny | Best Injury Lawyers could identify the responsible parties, handle communication with their insurers, and maximize the compensation you receive for your devastating injury.
A person is paraplegic when they have limited or no movement, sensation, or control over the muscles in their legs, usually as a result of an injury to the spinal cord. The spine has three sections: the lumbar, thoracic, and cervical. Injuries to the lumbar spine and the lower section of the thoracic spine result in paraplegia. Injuries to the top half of the thoracic or the cervical spine result in quadriplegia or paralysis of all four limbs.
Someone with paraplegia might be able to walk with braces or a walker when their injury is low in the lumbar region. People with higher injuries usually cannot regain enough function in their legs to walk and must use a wheelchair. People with injuries to the thoracic spine often lose control over their bladder, bowel, and sexual functions.
Paraplegia causes numerous secondary health impacts. When someone uses a wheelchair, it can commonly cause pressure sores, spasticity, and pain. People with paraplegia are at high risk for bladder and urinary tract infections, and it can also have an impact on mental health, often leading to anxiety, depression, and other challenges.
Negligence Leads to Most Cases of Paraplegia
Falls, vehicle accidents, and sports injuries often result from another party’s negligence, leading to paraplegia. A Baton Rouge paraplegia attorney could investigate the circumstances of an incident to identify parties who demonstrated a lack of reasonable care.
The National Institute of Health lists catastrophic falls as the leading cause of spinal cord injury among older adults. When a fall caused the injury, the property owner or lessee, such as a restaurant owner or nursing home operator, could be liable.
The National Institute of Health also lists motor vehicle accidents as the other most common cause of spinal cord injuries. Vehicle accidents are also the most common cause of paraplegia among younger people. The at-fault driver is likely liable in a vehicle accident, but their employer, the vehicle manufacturer, and even the local government responsible for road maintenance could bear responsibility.
Sports mishaps, such as diving accidents and forceful hits in contact sports, also cause many paraplegia injuries. Sports league sponsors, safety equipment manufacturers, and school districts could be liable for a sports accident that caused paralysis.
Allocating Responsibility for a Paraplegia Injury
Some accidents result from solely one party’s misconduct, but sometimes several factors combine to cause an incident. In many cases, an injured person’s conduct contributed to the situation that caused their injury.
Under the Louisiana Civil Code § 2323, each party in an accident is responsible for the results of their conduct. When four parties are each equally at fault for an incident that resulted in a paraplegia injury, each would be responsible for 25 percent of an injured person’s damages. When the injured person was one of the parties responsible, they could collect 75 percent of their damages from the other responsible parties.
When a lawsuit goes to trial, the jury decides how much fault to attribute to each party. Most injury lawsuits do not make it to trial because the parties reach a settlement, but allocating fault is often a contentious issue during settlement negotiations. A paraplegia attorney in Baton Rouge could aggressively defend an injured person’s conduct and ensure they do not bear an unjust share of the responsibility for an accident.
Seek Compensation With a Baton Rouge Paraplegia Injury Attorney
Every aspect of you or your loved one’s life is affected by paraplegia. It can be a devastating condition and expensive to treat and to live with.
Filing a lawsuit against the parties whose negligence contributed to the injury could provide you access the best treatment and give you the best chance for a fulfilling life. However, there is limited time to act. Call a Baton Rouge paraplegia injury lawyer at Tomeny | Best today for a free consultation to explore your legal options.