Atlantic City Back Injury Attorney
Few among us have never experienced back pain, so we all know the agony it can cause. Suffering a back injury that someone else’s negligence caused, on the other hand, can truly devastate you. Unpredictable and slow to heal, back injuries can particularly bedevil their victims. Take any accident that causes lingering back pain (or outright back injuries) very seriously.
Your healthy back is critical to your overall health, your well-being, your way of life, and even your livelihood. Any degree of injury to your back can significantly damage your ability to embrace life head on and live life to the fullest.
Accidents And Back Injuries
Accidents, such as slips and falls and car accidents, often result in extremely painful, debilitating, and expensive back injuries. If someone else’s negligence caused your injuries, don’t take a let’s see what happens approach to recovery—you need immediate medical attention and experienced legal counsel from an experienced Atlantic City back injury attorney. Every back injury claim is unique and uniquely complicated. Allow the experienced legal team at The Levin Firm to help guide your claim toward its most just resolution.
Your Back Injury
A back injury may result in challenging ordeals. Back injuries can range from minor strains to extremely serious spinal cord injuries that lead to paralysis. Nearly all back injuries, however, hurt. Furthermore, you may find the path to recovery elusive as well as protracted. Your back injury can damage your life in significant and surprising ways, which can include serious financial consequences. Coping with all the attendant elements of a back injury—including the insurance claims—can overwhelm victims. An experienced back injury lawyer can help.
The following accidents commonly result in significant back injuries:
- Car, truck, motorcycle, bike, and pedestrian accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Accidents—such as falls—on construction sites
- Work accidents.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injuries can inflict such serious consequences that it’s important to take a closer look. Damage to the ligaments of your spine, the discs of your spine, or your spinal cord itself cause these injuries—and the direct, blunt impact of the accident usually precipitates them. While every spinal cord injury is serious, such injuries don’t always manifest at the time of the accident. Spinal cord injuries can develop with time—after the accident’s impact subsides and the swelling, bleeding, and accumulation of fluid within the spinal cord continue. As a result, spinal cord injuries devastate their victims physically, emotionally, and financially.
Atlantic City Spinal Cord Injury FAQ
The Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine estimates more than 250,000 people across the United States live with disabilities related to a spinal cord injury. Those disabilities are why spinal cord injuries rank among the most severe and potentially costly injuries a person can suffer. Fortunately, when a person suffers a spinal cord injury as a result of someone else’s careless or negligent actions, New Jersey law permits the victim in many cases to take legal action seeking compensation.
If you or a loved one recently suffered a spinal cord injury in the Atlantic City area, then you may have the right to receive substantial financial compensation. Below we answer some common questions our clients ask about spinal cord injuries and their legal rights related to them. For answers to specific questions about a spinal cord injury you suffered in or around Atlantic City, the experienced Atlantic City spinal cord injury lawyers at the Levin Firm today.
Who might be liable for my spinal cord injury?
Liability depends on the events or circumstances that led to your injury. Many victims suffer a spinal cord injury in a car accident. In fact, the National Institute of Health (NIH) reports that traffic accidents lead to more than 40 percent of all spinal cord injuries, making it the number one cause of spinal cord injuries for people under age 65. According to the NIH, more than 90 percent of spinal cord injuries happen as a result of traffic accidents, unintentional falls, violence, and playing sports.
With this in mind, defendants in a spinal cord injury lawsuit could include one or more of the following:
- A driver in a passenger vehicle, truck, or on a motorcycle
- A pedestrian or cyclist
- A property owner or business owner
- An individual who assaulted, shot, or intentionally harmed you
- A sports team, a university or college, or a school district
Speak with an experienced Atlantic City spinal cord injury attorney to learn about who might have a legal liability to you for your spinal cord injuries.
My spinal cord injury occurred in a traffic accident. Does My PIP insurance apply?
If you live in New Jersey or another state that requires mandatory personal injury protection (PIP) coverage as part of their no-fault insurance system, your PIP insurance applies. The first step you need to take to begin to recover some costs associated with your spinal cord injury is to file a claim under your PIP policy, even if you did not cause the accident. New Jersey requires a minimum of $15,000 in coverage and covers medical expenses up to the policy limit. Other states vary in coverage requirements and some states pay benefits for lost wages and other economic losses.
Spinal cord injuries are costly because patients typically spend months in the hospital. Long-term hospitalization quickly meets or exceeds the limits of a PIP policy, even when drivers opt for the maximum amount of coverage. Contact a skilled Atlantic City spinal cord injury attorney as soon as possible after filing your PIP claim to plan a strategy to receive compensation beyond your policy limits.
How long do I have to take legal action after a spinal cord injury?
New Jersey has a two-year statute of limitations for personal injury cases, including those involving spinal cord injuries, although the specific facts and circumstances of your Atlantic City spinal cord injury can extend or shorten that time period.
A statute of limitations represents the outside time limit that you have for taking legal action seeking compensation for your Atlantic City spinal cord injury. Typically, however, it is best to begin exploring your legal rights as soon after an injury as possible to ensure that you do not run out of time and lose valuable rights to compensation, especially because spinal cord injuries can pose a challenge for personal injury lawyers.
Filing a lawsuit or settling a claim involving an Atlantic City spinal cord injury often requires a confident prognosis from doctors, which can take a while to obtain. Spinal cord injury claims also often involve large amounts of money, which can stretch a case timeline. So, the sooner you get started on enforcing your rights to compensation, the better.
My spinal cord injury is partially my fault. Do I still have a viable claim?
There is a very good chance that you do. Being partially at fault for your own injury does not automatically disqualify you from taking legal action and receiving substantial compensation. Speak with an experienced Atlantic City spinal cord injury attorney right away.
What should I do if I suffered a spinal cord injury at work?
Most Atlantic City employers must carry workers’ compensation insurance to protect their employees against the costs of work-related injury or illness and any resulting disability. Employees must file a workers’ comp claim with their employer’s workers’ comp insurance carrier to receive benefits. Workers’ compensation covers two-thirds of an employee’s wages and some medical costs. In most cases, employees cannot sue their employers for a work-related injury.
Consult an experienced Atlantic City spinal cord injury attorney about your rights after getting hurt on the job. Sometimes spinal cord injury victims can seek damages from a third party whose actions led to them getting hurt. For example, if you fell at a construction site or got in a car accident in a company vehicle, you may have legal rights to seek compensation from parties other than your employer for causing your spinal cord injury.
I have permanent damage from a spinal cord injury and cannot return to work. Now what?
Many spinal cord injuries prevent victims from returning to the same job they held before they got hurt. Spinal cord injury victims who suffer permanent disabilities may qualify for Social Security Disability Income (SSDI), private long-term disability insurance benefits, and, in limited cases, Supplemental Security Income (SSI). These monthly payments only compensate you for part of the income you earned before your injury, so you will likely still have an income loss to contend with.
Taking legal action against parties who caused you harm may provide you with additional compensation that you would not otherwise receive through SSDI or SSI. An experienced Atlantic City spinal cord injury attorney can answer questions you may have about your rights to seek compensation from sources other than disability insurance and guide you on the right path for your individual circumstances.
Do I have to pay my medical bills if I did not cause my injury?
Yes and no. As a legal matter, you have financial responsibility for all medical expenses you incur for treatment of your spinal cord injury, from emergency care bills to the cost of long-term therapies. However, that does not necessarily mean that you have to pay those costs out of your own pocket. Insurance benefits, settlements, and/or court-awarded damages can help you pay for those expenses; but, of course, obtaining the money from those sources can take time and effort.
That is why you should call our experienced Atlantic City spinal cord injury attorneys as soon as possible after getting hurt. The sooner you begin the process of enforcing your legal rights to receive compensation from the parties who caused you harm, the better your chances of staying ahead of huge medical bills and having the financial cushion you need to adapt to living with a spinal cord injury.
What damages can I recover from a spinal cord injury lawsuit?
If you bring a lawsuit against the person or party responsible for your spinal cord injury, you may recover damages to compensate for a wide range of harms you suffered, including:
- Medical treatment costs including ambulance and emergency services, hospital stay, surgery, followup visits, diagnostic imaging, medication, and travel to and from the hospital/doctor
- Estimated future medical expenses for continued spinal cord treatment and residence in a long-term nursing care facility when a spinal cord injury victim needs around-the-clock care
- Costs for rehabilitation, especially physical therapy to help patients potentially regain function and avoid muscle atrophy and occupational therapy to assist patients in learning how to perform daily tasks with their disability
- Mental health treatment expenses so spinal cord injury victims can work thorough the anguish and distress of their injury with a trained professional
- Costs for assistive devices such as wheelchairs and walkers
- Costs for technology to help with communication, pain, and other challenges
- Lost wages for time away from work as a result of the injury, treatment, and recovery
- Estimated future lost wages when a spinal cord injury prevents a victim from returning to work or seeking employment in the future
- Home modification costs to increase accessibility such as building wheelchair ramps and installing handrails
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional pain and suffering
- Decreased quality of life
- Loss of consortium with a spouse
- Punitive damages when a spinal cord injury occurs as a result of willful harm or gross negligence
There is no guarantee you will recover all, or even any, of these categories of damages, of course. However, the most reliable way to give yourself the best possible chance of obtaining maximum compensation is to hire our experienced Atlantic City spinal cord injury attorneys as soon as possible.
How can a lawyer help me after a spinal cord injury?
Suffering a spinal cord injury is a traumatic life event that requires you to focus on healing and recovery. An experienced spinal cord injury attorney can handle the details of your legal claim, so you can focus on your health. This includes filing the necessary paperwork, investigating the event that led to your preventable spinal cord injury, talking to witnesses, consulting experts, gathering relevant evidence and documents to support your case, and advocating for you every step of the way.
Our Atlantic City spinal cord injury lawyers also handle negotiations with insurance companies and defense lawyers, protecting you from the tactics they sometimes use to try to undermine your rights, and pushing them to pay you the maximum compensation you need and deserve.
How much does it cost to retain an attorney?
Nothing. Experienced Atlantic City spinal cord injury attorneys offer a free consultation, and take cases on a contingency fee basis. Under this arrangement, injured clients pay nothing to the lawyer up-front. Instead, the attorney and client agree that the attorney can receive a percentage of any money the lawyer’s efforts recover for the client.
If a lawyer negotiates a settlement or the court rules in favor of the plaintiff, the firm collects attorney fees from that compensation. Personal injury law firms understand the financial burden that comes with a serious injury and want to help clients get the compensation they deserve.
How much compensation will I receive for my injury?
It’s difficult, if not impossible, to predict the financial outcome of a spinal cord injury lawsuit. Depending on the merit and circumstances of your case, you could receive hundreds, thousands, or millions of dollars. Spinal cord injuries are costly, so compensation is typically higher than for other kinds of injuries.
The value of a case includes economic losses such as medical bills and lost wages, and compensation for so-called non-economic losses such as pain and suffering, reduced quality of life, and other damages that are not easy to quantify. Skilled Atlantic City spinal cord injury lawyers often consult with experts like life care planners or actuaries to calculate the amount of damages you should receive. Then, they fight hard to get you as much of that amount as possible from every party who has a legal liability to you.
How long do I have to wait before my case is resolved?
Spinal cord injury claims often take longer to resolve than claims involving simpler injuries, but that is only a general rule. Most of the factors affecting the timeline for an Atlantic City spinal cord injury claim are beyond any lawyer’s ability to control, although at the Levin Firm we have the experience to efficiently bring your claim to the fastest possible conclusion without sacrificing the compensation you need or deserve. That is why we want you to contact an experienced Atlantic City spinal cord injury lawyer at the Levin Firm right away and get started on enforcing your rights to compensation for the harm you suffered.
Your Medical Expenses
If someone else’s negligence caused your back injury, you need immediate medical attention. While such injuries typically involve medical expenses at the outset, they can also lead to medical costs that quickly accumulate with time as your body continues to react to the injuries it sustained. These expenses can vary greatly depending on the severity of your injury, but even a minor sprain or strain can lead to significant ongoing medical needs and costs. Back injuries can result in the following medical expenses:
- Emergency medical transportation
- Medical treatment (current and ongoing)
- Physical therapy
- Alternative treatments for ongoing pain and immobility
- Adaptive medical equipment
- Prescription medications
- Medical specialists
- Rehabilitation and recovery
It’s a lot. If someone else’s negligence caused your back injury, contact a skilled back injury lawyer to ensure that you receive full compensation for your damages.
Car Accidents In New Jersey
If another driver’s negligence caused your back injury, things work a bit differently in New Jersey. In a New Jersey car accident, your own Personal Injury Protection (PIP) car insurance will cover your injuries. This is true even when the other driver is at fault for causing the accident and your injuries. While PIP coverage is an efficient means of paying your medical bills (though it may not cover all of them), it does not cover non-economic damages, such as the pain and suffering that often accompanies serious accidents.
If your back injury caused you to suffer a broken bone or sustain a permanent injury (an injury that hasn’t healed and isn’t likely to), then you may file a legal claim against the negligent driver by taking it outside of the PIP coverage system. An experienced back injury attorney will explore that options with you.
Your Insurance Provider And Your Back Injury Claim
If you suffered a back injury in an accident, even if your own insurance policy should cover your medical expenses, remember that your insurance provider is in the business of turning a profit. Though they should conduct themselves according to industry and legal standards, insurance companies prioritize their own profits and minimize the amounts they pay out for injuries sustained in accidents.
An experienced back injury attorney will aggressively advocate on your behalf to obtain the compensation to which New Jersey law entitles you.
If An Accident Caused Your Back Injury, Contact A Skilled Atlantic City Back Injury Lawyer Today
Back injuries are often painful, slow to heal, and costly. If someone else’s negligence caused your back injury, you need experienced legal counsel. Your rights and your rightful compensation are far too important to leave to chance. The dedicated legal team at The Levin Firm in Atlantic City has the experience, commitment, and compassion to guide your claim toward its most beneficial outcome. Our skilled back injury attorneys are here to help, so please contact our office online or call us at (215) 825-5183 today for a free consultation.