Spinal Cord Injury
Ohio Catastrophic Injury and Product Liability Lawyer
The spinal cord is the bundle of nerves that carries signals to and from the brain to the rest of the body. A spinal cord injury is defined as damage to any part of the spinal cord or nerves at the end of the spinal canal that causes permanent changes in sensation and/or function below the site of the injury.
Frequency of Spinal Cord Injuries
Each year there are approximately 12,000 spinal cord injuries, not including those who do not survive the initial accident. There are currently 270,000 people in the country who are living with spinal cord injuries. Single males between the ages of 16 and 30 are at the highest risk of injury. Indeed, men make up 86% of all cases.
Joe Lyon is an experienced spinal cord injury attorney who is well versed in the science and economic impact that such an injury has on the injured person’s life.
The Lyon Firm has developed compelling evidence in catastrophic injury cases through the use of engineers, life care planners, economists, and neurologists to present the highest quality evidence and arguments on the Plaintiff’s behalf.
This work has resulted in significant six and seven figure settlements that enhanced and secured a dignified quality of life for the Plaintiff’s future.
Most Common Cause of Spinal Cord Injuries
Vehicle Accidents account for 35% of all cases. Examples include:
Other Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries
- Defective Vehicles
- Slip and Falls
- Industrial Accidents
- Assaults (Gun Shots)
- Defective Firearms
Types of Spinal Cord Injuries
- High Quadriplegia (Tetraplegia) (C1-C4)
- Low Quadriplegia (Tetraplegia) (C5-C8)
- Thoracic Spinal Cord Injury (T1-T12)
- Lumbar Spinal Cord Injury (L1-L5)
- Sacral Spinal Cord Injury (S1-S5)
- Complete Spinal Cord Injury
- Incomplete Spinal Cord Injury
The legal options will depend on what caused the spinal cord injury. In any case, these injuries are too serious for the injured party to negotiate a fair and comprehensive settlement without an attorney. The interplay of complex liability questions, subrogation, and future life care plans require the attention of an attorney experienced in spinal cord injury lawsuits. There are personal injury cases where an attorney may not be necessary, but a spinal cord injury will have long lasting impact and should be addressed by a lawyer qualified in complex personal injury matters.
Vehicle Accident: if the case involved a vehicle accident, there is typically insurance available to compensate the injured party. However, often individual vehicle insurance policies will not be sufficient to fully compensate the victim. In those cases, it may be necessary to find additional defendants that contributed to the accident sequence and can therefore contribute to compensating the injured party.
Product Liability: Where the injury was caused by a defective product, the litigation path is much more expensive and complex. The attorney will need to evaluate the viability of the defendant and cost to prove the case through expert testimony. Product liability cases can be some of the most expensive types of litigation, but where there is a viable defendant, the cases should be evaluated carefully to determine if a defective product caused the spinal cord injury.
Industrial Accidents: Many spinal cord injuries are a result of falls during industrial work. The first step is whether the case is limited to Worker’s Compensation. This analysis requires a thorough understanding of Employer Intentional Tort law which has become more difficult in recent years. Often the case requires a removal of an equipment safety guard or a knowing violation of an OSHA regulation to move past a motion for summary judgment.
What is a Fair Settlement Value for a Spinal Cord Injury Lawsuit?
The settlement value will depend on a number of variables. No spinal cord injury lawsuit is exactly the same and each case will require an evaluation of the following variables. As the evidence is developed, some aspects may become stronger and some weaker, and the lawyer must re-evaluate the case each step of the way. The following a list of variables that must be considered in every spinal cord injury settlement process:
- The venue where the trial will occur
- The Judge
- Whether any issues exist that could result in a Motion for Summary Judgment being granted and the chance of such a motion being granted
- The existence of pre-existing conditions that limited the quality of life
- The credibility of the plaintiff
- The credibility of the defendant
- Whether the independent treating physician is supportive of the case
- Whether other events may have caused or contributed to the injury
- The amount of subrogation
- The expenses to take the case to trial
- The chance of success at trial
- The verdict range with a successful verdict
- Whether a settlement will adequately care for the Plaintiff in the future
- Whether the Plaintiff has suffered a permanent injury
- Whether damages caps apply
- Whether settlement will fairly compensate the Plaintiff while reducing the risk and cost of additional litigation.
Provided the burden of proof is surmounted, Ohio provides substantial monetary compensation for spinal cord injuries. Ohio has damages cap on certain personal injury awards but those damages caps do not apply in spinal cord injury cases. Compensation may be awarded for the following elements where the evidence supports the elements:
- Past Physical Pain and Suffering
- Past Mental Pain and Suffering
- Past Lost of Enjoyment of Life
- Past Medical Expenses
- Past Lost Wages
- Future Physical Pain and Suffering
- Future Mental Pain and Suffering
- Future Medical Expenses
- Future Loss of Enjoyment of Life
- Future Lost Wages or Loss of Earning Capacity
- Life Care Plans (home or vehicle improvements)
- Spousal Loss of Consortium (if applicable)
- Parental Loss of Consortium (if applicable)
If you have questions about the root cause of a spinal cord injury or the available legal remedies to improve the quality of life and medical care, please contact The Lyon Firm (800) 513-2403. You will speak directly with Mr. Lyon, and he will help you answer those critical questions.
After two hip replacement surgeries, I was informed that one of the prosthesis was the DuPuy Joint and the other was very similar but manufactured by a different company. After several attempts to contact the manufacturer directly to discuss the claim, I was met with bureaucratic red tape that appeared to be insurmountable. I then turned to Joe Lyon of the Lyon Law Firm who immediately cut through the pro I highly recommend Joe if you are faced with the need for this type of litigation.Tim Ross
I met Joe during what was easily one of the worst times of my life. My husband had been in a serious accident and was a quadriplegic following that accident and remained in one medical facility after another until his death nearly four years later. We had contacted an area attorney who told us we absolutely did not have a case. Then we called a Cleveland firm that took the case and brought in Joe. Joe did so much of the work and became just like family to us. I would highly recommend Joe to anyone and be willing to guarantee that he will do anything and everything possible to get satisfactory results. He is extremely dedicated to his clients and very hard working. Mike and I came to think of him like a son, I still do; if it wasn’t for him I don’t believe our case would have been settled the way it was and may have ended up in a courtroom where the results can go any way.Donna Urchak