If you or a loved one has suffered a spinal cord injury, you may be facing a lengthy recovery and ongoing medical needs. The medical bills in the first year after a spinal cord injury may exceed $1 million and continue into the future. You will need all the resources available to adapt to life after a spinal cord injury, including trusted legal guidance.
At Ryan Bisher Ryan & Simons, our attorneys are committed to protecting the rights of our injured clients and doing the right thing for their families. We are dedicated to advocating for people in Oklahoma who have suffered a spinal cord injury because of the negligence of another person. We are prepared to pursue maximum compensation on the victim’s behalf.
Our Oklahoma City law firm is skilled at identifying the implications of our clients’ injuries, the future medical needs that will be required as a result of the injury, and the financial effects the spinal cord injury has on the family. A special needs trust or “inter vivos” medical trust may be necessary to ensure that a victim’s needs are met. Establishing such a trust requires a great deal of experience and knowledge.
If you have suffered a spinal cord injury due to someone’s else fault, or if you hurt your back while on the job, contact a knowledgeable Oklahoma City spinal cord injury lawyer at Ryan Bisher Ryan & Simons. You can schedule your free, no-obligation consultation by calling (405) 528-4567.
Types of Back Injuries
The spinal cord is a bundle of nerves running from the base of the brain down the back. The fragile spinal cord is protected by the vertebrae. A spinal cord injury occurs when the vertebrae are fractured or damaged.
The severity of the injury depends on the location of the vertebrae damage. The types of injuries include:
- Herniated disc — A bulging disk that puts pressure on the spinal cord and causes intense pain
- Spinal compression fracture — Breakage that causes severe pain and leads to a pronounced curvature of the back, shortness of breath, stomach problems, hip pain and height loss, especially in older adults who have lost bone mass.
- Vertebra fracture — A break in any of the bones of the spinal column. Depending on the severity, a fracture can result in loss of sensation to part of the body.
- Spinal cord compression — Pressure on the nerve fibers of the spinal cord that produces intense pain and interferes with bodily functions
- Paraplegia — Paralysis of the legs caused by a break in the spinal cord from the upper back down
- Quadriplegia — Paralysis of the arms and legs caused by a break in the spinal cord in the neck area
A person who sustains a spinal cord injury may require a lifetime of medical treatment and procedures. A spinal cord injury survivor’s home and vehicle may need to be modified to allow the individual to live independently.
At Ryan Bisher Ryan & Simons, our personal injury lawyers vigorously pursue fair compensation for people who have sustained spinal cord injuries.
Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries and Complications
Spinal cord injuries typically result from damage to the vertebrae, ligaments, or discs. A traumatic spinal cord injury may be caused by a sudden blow that breaks, crushes, dislocates or compresses one or more of the vertebrae in the back or neck. Additional damage usually ensues after the injury due to the associated bleeding, swelling, and inflammation in and around the spinal cord.
Common causes of spinal cord injuries include:
- Car accidents
- Truck accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Workplace accidents
- Violent assaults
- Sports and recreation injuries
- Boating accidents
- Slip and falls
Spinal cord injuries may result in a wide range of symptoms, including:
- Extreme back pain
- Loss of sensation
- Loss of movement
- Difficulty breathing
- Loss of bladder control
- Loss of bowel control
- Sexual difficulties
- Pressure in the neck, head, or back
- Lack of coordination
- Paralysis in any part of the body
- Difficulty walking and balancing
- Twisting of the back or neck
If you experience any of these symptoms after a back injury, it’s important that you seek medical treatment as soon as possible.
How Much is a Back Injury Claim Worth?
If you have a case involving a back injury claim, there are a range of factors that will impact the value of the claim.
Having prior back problems may have a negative impact on the value of a back injury claim. The effect that a pre-existing condition will have on a claim depends on the severity of the previous back problem and its duration. It’s critical that you inform your lawyer if you have had any previous back injuries. An experienced attorney can usually minimize the significance of prior back problems, especially if the injury occurred long ago and you had not had any ongoing issues before your current back injury.
The value of your spinal injury claim in OKC includes a variety of factors, such as:
- what the diagnostic tests show about your back
- the severity and extent of the injury
- the pain and suffering that the injury has caused
- the insurance policies available to provide compensation
- the amount of lost wages and loss of earning capacity
The Oklahoma City personal injury attorneys at Ryan Bisher Ryan & Simons have extensive experience in determining the value of back injury cases. Because back injury cases are complex and no two cases are alike, it’s difficult to generalize about the value of a claim. However, when you schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable Oklahoma City spinal cord injury lawyer at Ryan Bisher Ryan & Simons, the attorney will be able to give you an idea of what types of damages you are eligible to seek.
Can I Recover Damages from a Back Injury at Work?
In an on-the-job back injury case, the employee hurt is entitled to Oklahoma workers’ compensation benefits. Unlike a personal injury case, workers’ compensation has nothing to do with fault. If you injured your back at work, you do not need to prove that your employer or a co-worker did anything wrong for you to claim workers’ comp benefits. Even if you accidentally caused your own back injury on the job, you’re still eligible to file for workers’ compensation benefits.
A workers’ comp back injury settlement may include:
- Medical costs: Workers’ compensation covers all medical bills associated with a workplace injury. To qualify for these benefits, you need to seek medical care from a provider that your employer has authorized. Medical coverage includes doctor appointments, surgeries, rehabilitation, and prescription medication.
- Lost wages: If you are not able to return to work because of your back injury, you may receive temporary total disability payments to compensate you for the time missed from work. If you are able to return to work in a limited capacity, you should be able to receive temporary partial disability payments.
- Vocational rehabilitation: If your back injury is so serious that you aren’t able to return to your previous type of work, you may be eligible to enroll in vocational retraining. These programs provide you with the skills you’ll need to qualify for a new role.
- Disability: Following your back injury, your physician will examine you and determine whether you have a permanent disability. The doctor will give you a disability rating after he or she has determined that if your condition is stable and you have reached maximum medical improvement. This rating will determine your disability benefits.
When you file a workers’ compensation claim with your employer, the information will go to your employer’s workers’ comp insurance administrator. The insurer will decide whether to accept or deny your claim. If you have sustained a serious back injury and are having trouble receiving benefits, it’s important that you seek the help of an experienced workers’ comp attorney. An experienced Oklahoma City workers’ compensation attorney at Ryan Bisher Ryan & Simons will guide you through the complicated Oklahoma workers’ comp system.
Why It is Important to Hire a Spinal Cord Injury Attorney in Oklahoma City
An Oklahoma City spinal cord injury lawyer who has experience representing clients with serious spinal injuries has an informed perspective on the typical payouts for spinal cord injury cases. A knowledgeable lawyer can help you to determine if a settlement you have been offered is reasonable. If the insurance company refuses to offer reasonable compensation, the attorneys at Ryan Bisher Ryan & Simons will be prepared to go to court if necessary to seek full compensation. Our legal team can gather evidence of how your injury occurred and arrange for medical experts to present a persuasive case to a jury on your behalf.
Contact a Dedicated Oklahoma City Spinal Cord Injury Attorney
If you or a loved one has suffered a spinal cord injury in Oklahoma City, you are likely dealing with large medical bills, including emergency room bills, treatment, and rehabilitation costs. You may be struggling with lost income and mental anguish as well, due to your spinal cord injury. If negligence or recklessness by another party caused your spinal cord injury, you may be eligible to recover compensation for your losses.
Ryan Bisher Ryan & Simons in Oklahoma is ready to help you pursue the maximum compensation for your injuries. Contact us online or call us at (405) 528-4567 today to arrange your free initial consultation.Get Started