Approximately 288,000 Americans suffer from debilitating spinal cord injuries (“SCI”), and this number unfortunately is growing. Statistics show that an estimated 17,700 new SCI cases are reported each year, mostly as the result of vehicle crashes.
SCI can have devastating emotional, physical, and financial impacts, leaving many victims and their families feeling helpless. If you or a family member has sustained a spinal cord injury because of someone else’s negligence (including reckless driving), we can help you in seeking full compensation from all those liable, including pain and suffering, lost wages, medical costs, care expenses, and all other damages recoverable under Virginia law.
Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries
While, the majority of spinal cord injuries are caused by motor vehicle accidents and crashes, there are a variety of other causes that result in thousands of spinal cord injuries each year, including:
- Car, truck, taxi, motorcycle, bicycling, and pedestrian accidents and crashes
- Medical malpractice
- Sports injuries, including football, gymnastics, and diving accidents
- Boating injuries
- Gunshot and stabbing wounds
- Criminal violence and battery
- Work related accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
The degree of spinal cord impairment and types of injuries also vary. The following are some of the common SCI:
- Nerve damage
- Fractured vertebrae
- Damaged Discs
- Central cord syndrome
- Partial paralysis
The spine is an integral part of the body, and damage to the spinal cord can have effects on other parts of the body. For instance, if you injure your lumbar spine, you may experience not only lower back pain but may also develop symptoms in your legs.
As an experienced Southwest Virginia spinal cord injury lawyer, Mark Hurt understands the types of evidence needed to make a strong case. He has helped numerous clients in spinal cord injury cases obtain full compensation from all those liable.
How Much Can I Recover in a Spinal Injury Case?
Not only are spinal cord injuries devastating for the injury victim and their family, they can be astronomically expensive if paraplegia or quadriplegia results. An SPI victim with quadriplegia who can no longer care for themselves can easily incur medical and care costs of $5,000,000 dollars over the course of a lifetime, and this does not include other costs such as lost wages.
Even those less injured can suffering substantial medical bills, in addition to tremendous pain and suffering that may last a lifetime.
Under Virginia law, injury victims are entitled to full compensation for all damages resulting directly from being injured due to the negligence or recklessness of another person. Damages may include compensation for:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Past and future pain and suffering
- Lost Wages
- Care expenses, including in-home care if required
- Other necessary costs related to quadriplegia and paraplegia, such as home and vehicle modifications, wheelchairs, and other care equipment
- Damages as the result of a potentially-shortened life span from severe injuries
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment (this relates to being unable to engage in activities that you formerly enjoyed)
- Emotional distress
- Property loss (such as the loss of a vehicle)
Making Your Case for Full Compensation
In the case of severe spinal cord damage cases, we will retain medical experts, care experts, lost wage experts, and potentially other experts that may be needed to help prove the cases of our clients. Because lost wages, care, and medical expenses can reach into the millions of dollars, it will be critical to retain the experts who can carefully and effectively make your case to a jury. In all likelihood, if you’ve been severely injured, the defendant(s) and their attorneys will want to minimize their liability by challenging you damages and pain and suffering through their own experts; we will tenaciously refute these claims with experts.
With respect to care expenses, if you have been injured and need ongoing care, you deserve top-level, professional care if you are unable to care for yourself because of your injuries. We will be there to make your case and demand all of the compensation to which you are due.
Identifying and Holding Accountable All Those Responsible for Your Injury
In many spinal injury cases, there are multiple people and/or entities that may be responsible. In a sports injury, such as football, those potentially liable could including football helmet manufacturers, school districts, and others.
It is our job to learn about all facts and circumstances involving a spinal injury so that we can then seek full justice and compensation from all those who we believe are legally liable.
How Long Do I Have to File a Spinal Cord Injury Lawsuit in Virginia?
A personal injury claim for a spinal cord injury must be filed within a specified amount of time. In Virginia, this period, referred to as the statute of limitations, is two years from the date of injury. If a timely filing is not made within such time period, a claim will likely be barred, such that a victim will lose their right to bring a legal claim.
Under certain limited circumstances, such as in the case of injuries that are not initially readily apparent, the statute of limitations may be extended. In cases such as these, the statute of limitations will begin on the day that an injury is first discovered, rather than on the date of the injury.
As in all injury cases, it is best to contact an experienced injury lawyer as soon as possible, not only to make sure that the legal filing deadlines are met, but also to begin preserving evidence and seeking discovery to make a case.
Why Should I Hire an Experienced Southwest VA Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer?
From Abingdon and Wytheville, to Hillsville and Roanoke; spinal cord injury attorney Mark Hurt has spent over three decades representing SCI injury victims from all over Southwest Virginia. Over this time, he has helped numerous SCI victims get compensation to help pay for long term medical care and living expenses.
Mark is a graduate of Duke Law School, and has represented clients through Virginia in numerous counties, and before Virginia’s appellate courts, as well as in federal trial and appellate court, and before the United States Supreme Court. Mark is known for zealous advocacy and client dedication, and a long record of working tenaciously in seeing that clients get every dollar they deserve. If you hire the Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt, you can rest assured that you are in the hands of an experienced trial lawyer who knows what it takes to get compensation for victims with severe and lifelong injuries.
Legal Fees and Expenses for Spinal Cord Injury Cases
After a traumatic spinal cord injury, one of the last things you need to worry about are legal fees or expenses. At the Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt, you will only pay a fee if we obtain compensation for you from a settlement or trial award. Additionally, we advance litigation costs and expenses on behalf of clients (these expenses are normally deducted from a settlement or verdict). Prior to commencing our representation, we will provide you with a fee agreement that outlines the terms of our engagement, including costs and fees, and we will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.
We invite you to contact us today to schedule a free consultation to learn more.
 Spinal Cord Injury Facts and Figures at a Glance, National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (2018), https://www.nscisc.uab.edu/Public/Facts%20and%20Figures%20-%202018.pdf.
 Spinal Cord Injury Facts and Figures at a Glance, National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (2018), https://www.nscisc.uab.edu/Public/Facts%20and%20Figures%20-%202018.pdf (Victims who sustain high tretraplegia have an estimated lifetime cost of $4,891,398 if they are 25 years old at the time of the injury).
We hired Mr. Hurt to help settle a worker’s comp injury case for my husband. Mark, Bart, and Mary worked tirelessly to resolve his case and reach a settlement we were pleased with. They were always available to answer questions and returned calls in a timely manner.