Updated August 12, 2022

Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries and Spinal Cord Injury Lawsuits in Indianapolis

Spinal Cord Injury Causes

Spinal cord injuries can be devastating and permanent, altering every aspect of your daily life. The spinal cord, which connects the central nervous system and the brain, is the primary means by which you communicate movement to your limbs. Unfortunately, spinal cord injuries are relatively common, and recovery is difficult.

What are some Spinal Cord Injury Risk Factors?

Certain physical activities, especially dangerous ones, put you at a greater risk for injury. You may have a genetic predisposition to injury as well; certain types of bone or joint disorders can increase your chances of injury. Additionally, you may be more prone to these injuries if you are between 16 and 30 years old, older than 65 years old, or if you are male. These populations are more susceptible due to various factors, primarily risky behaviors, and work environments.

What are some Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries?

There are several ways that the spinal cord can become injured. Some common causes that can lead to a spinal cord injury include:

Spinal cord injuries, if caused by someone else’s negligence, could be cause for a personal injury case. A personal injury case involving a spinal cord injury is both serious and complex. It may require the assistance of a legal professional to achieve the best results.

Spinal Cord Injury Defenses

When you are pursuing damages for a spinal cord injury, the defendant may try to resist making payments. They can do this in two main ways: negligence laws and risk assumption.

Comparative Negligence Laws

Indiana tort law abides by comparative negligence standards. This means that financial responsibility for injuries will be adjusted according to the percentage of fault each party bears. For example, if you were 30% responsible for your own injuries, the defendant will not have to pay the full value.

The defendant may also argue that your own carelessness caused your spinal cord injury. If you were drunk at the time you were injured, they might argue that your intoxication was the  primary cause you got hurt.

Since your compensation is contingent on proving the other party’s negligence, your chances of receiving benefits will decrease if you are partially at fault. If you are uncertain about your role in causing an accident and believe it was the other party’s mistake that led to your injuries, consult a legal professional.

Assumption of Risk

Certain activities involve a reasonable assumption of risk. This means the injured person understood how dangerous their actions might be and was aware of the potential consequences. A defendant might argue that you chose to participate in the activity that posed a risk to you, and therefore you do not deserve compensation. 

Examples of the assumption of risk would be things like playing a sport or going rock climbing. You must be prepared to handle a fall and take the precautions to protect yourself if you mess up. However, suppose you are participating at an establishment with a duty to protect you. In that case, your injuries could still be their fault if they were negligent.

There is also a reasonable level of risk that can be assumed without full awareness. For example, if you agree to a boxing match knowing that you will be punched, you can still recover compensation if you are attacked beyond that. You only assumed the risk of punches. You did not assume the risk of additional actions such as kicks, bites, or the use of weapons.

If you do not have an experienced attorney on your side, comparative negligence and assumption of risk defenses may jeopardize your ability to obtain compensation from the guilty party. Don’t let those responsible for your injury push you around. Hiring a legal professional to protect you from being taken advantage of is essential. 

Reasons to Hire a Lawyer for Spinal Injuries

 Spinal injuries can be fatal, debilitating, permanent, and difficult to deal with. Lawsuits surrounding these injuries are often complex and require a higher degree of specialization. Obtaining proper medical care is the most crucial aspect of a spinal cord injury accident.  Beyond that, paying for said medical care and other expenses is a top priority. 

Personal injury attorneys can provide educated counsel on legal matters to ease your recovery process. We review each injury case on an individual basis to give the most accurate advice. If we decide that you should pursue a claim against the negligent party, we will help you retrieve benefits for your injuries.

In addition to the burden lifted off your shoulders during a personal injury case, there are several other reasons to seek legal assistance.

Attorneys with experience in spinal cord injuries have a better idea of how much specific factors can impact your life. You may be offered settlements from insurance that appear generous. Still, they don’t include funds for future issues that may arise from your injuries. Remember that this injury may affect you forever, and this money is supposed to last you the whole time.

Additionally, insurance companies do not always have your best interest at heart. They often use whatever tactics they can to reduce the amount they will have to pay. This could include intimidation, dodging fault, or minimizing your injuries. Here at WKW, we will not let you be walked over by the individuals responsible for your injuries. We will use our resources to help you recover damages within the required time window. 

Indiana Spinal Injury Statute of Limitations

The amount of time you have to file a lawsuit for a spinal cord injury will depend on the victim’s age, state laws, and the involved parties. In Indiana, the statute of limitations on personal injury accidents is two years from the date of the injury. This time period gets shorter if you are dealing with a government or city entity. 

After two years, the defendant has no obligation to provide you with injury damages. Therefore your chances of recovering compensation decrease significantly. It’s best to file a claim as soon as possible while the details are still fresh on your mind. 

Contact a WKW Attorney Today

Spinal cord injuries can change your life forever. In a matter of seconds, everything you know could be turned upside-down. The U.S. legal system provides a route to recover benefits from the guilty party. It becomes your responsibility to take advantage of it. If you or a loved one have suffered from an injury in Indiana at someone else’s fault, contact an Indianapolis personal injury lawyer from Wilson Kehoe Winingham. The lawyers at WKW can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call 317.689.0654 or fill out an online contact form for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

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