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Back and Spinal Cord Injuries

spinal cord injury lawyer phoenix
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Back injuries are serious and greatly affect people’s lives. the bones and ligaments in your back function to hold your body upright, while your spine sends signals to your brain. If you sustain a back injury from an accident, these functions are at risk. If you experienced a back injury, contact a compassionate and aggressive back and spinal cord injury lawyer Phoenix at Ybarra Maldonado Law Group. To schedule your consultation with us, please call 602-910-4040 today.

What are Examples of a Back Injury?

Back injuries range from mild examples such as strained muscles to severe examples like paralysis. Any part of your back could sustain an injury, including your spine, vertebrae, muscles, or even organs. Below, we list some possible back injuries:

  • Broken or fractured bones
  • Pulled ligaments
  • Strained muscles
  • Herniated discs
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Muscle spasms
  • Contusions
  • Whiplash

What Are Common Back Injury Side Effects?

Back injuries might result in any number of side effects. Injuries to the back’s bones, joints, connective tissues, muscles, or nerves can cause pain or discomfort of varying degrees. You might injure yourself playing sports, in a car accident, or even in a fall.

Commonly, back injuries occur in the lower portion of the back. The injury might be a sprain, a strain, a herniated disc, or even a fracture. Below, we list common signs and side effects of a back injury.

  • Pain or tenderness
  • Pain that worsens with movement
  • Stiffness
  • Difficulty moving
  • Spasming muscles
  • Bruises
  • Swelling
  • Shooting pain in one or both legs
  • Weakness or numbness in the legs

How Do You Know if Your Back Injury is Serious?

Certain symptoms after a back injury are indicative of an emergency or a serious condition. Experiencing significant trauma to the spinal cord can result in all or some of the following symptoms:

  • Extreme pain in the back
  • Weakness or paralysis in certain parts of the body
  • Numbness or loss of sensation in the extremities
  • Loss of bowel or bladder control
  • Difficulty walking or balancing
  • Difficulty breathing

If you experience any of the above symptoms after an accident, see a doctor immediately and hire a back injury lawyer. Once you receive your diagnosis, Ybarra Maldonado Law Group will fight for your just compensation. Back and spinal injuries change lives. We’ll fight to make sure money isn’t an issue for you after a serious back injury.

What Are the Different Types of Spinal Cord Injuries?

phoenix back injury lawyer

Complete and incomplete spinal cord injuries are the two forms of spinal cord injuries. 

An incomplete spinal cord injury is one where partial feeling or mobility remains underneath the point of injury, whilst a full spinal cord injury is one wherein complete function is lost beneath the point of injury. To further elaborate, we explain them in more detail below.

Complete Spinal Cord Injury

When the spinal cord is completely damaged, the area beneath the injury is unable to correspond with the brain. As a result, the victim’s motor and nerve function, along with feeling and movement, will be entirely lost under the trauma. Underneath the affected region, there will be complete paralysis. Paraplegia is the effect of this.

Incomplete Spinal Cord Injuries

Whenever some amount of mobility and sensory function persists after damage, certain messages can still be delivered through the spinal cord to the brain. The degree of mobility is entirely determined by the magnitude of the spinal cord damage. There are five types of injuries that fall into this category: anterior cord syndrome, central cord syndrome, posterior cord syndrome, brown-sequard syndrome, and cauda equina syndrome 

Spinal Contusions and Nerve Damage

This must be the most prevalent form of spinal cord injury; it normally lasts only a few days and heals quickly.

The magnitude and severity of incomplete injuries can differ tremendously, with the site of the damage having a significant influence on the following symptoms. 

The following are the most common problems associated with an incomplete SCI:

  • Anterior Cord Syndrome denotes trauma to the front of the spinal cord and is characterized by poor mobility, touch, pain, and temperature sensations below the injury.
  • Central Cord Syndrome develops when the spinal cord’s core is destroyed. The arms lose function as a result of this, while leg mobility is intact.
  • Posterior Cord Syndrome is defined by injury to the rear of the spinal cord, which results in impaired coordination.
  • Brown-Sequard Syndrome occurs when one side of the spinal cord is injured whereas the other is unaffected. Along one half of the body, mobility will be lost but the feeling will be intact, whereas on the other side of the body, movement will be lost but the sensation will be kept.

A doctor conducting a physical examination can frequently tell where an injury has developed on the spine depending on the symptoms it presents. 

The anatomy of the spinal cord is divided into five sections:

  1. Cervical (neck)
  2. Thoracic (chest)
  3. Lumbar (lower back)
  4. Sacral (pelvis)
  5. Coccygeal (tailbone)

When a complete spinal cord injury develops, multiple forms of paralysis might ensue based on which anatomy section is injured. When there is a full SCI in the cervical part of the spine, for instance, Quadriplegia (also known as Tetraplegia) happens, the loss function for all four limbs is the result.  Whereas, paraplegia, or leg function loss, is caused by a spinal cord injury that occurs in the thoracic, lumbar, or sacral portions.

What are the Impacts of a Spinal Cord Injury?

Injury to the fiber tracts which convey impulses to and from the brain might happen as a consequence of a spinal cord injury. In reality, if the spinal cord is severely damaged, the spinal nerves just under the injury might continue to receive impulses but will be unable to communicate with the brain. A severe spinal cord injury can cause lifelong loss of feeling and strength below the injury site. If you or a loved one has suffered a spinal cord injury as a result of another person’s or company’s carelessness, you do not have to face the consequences alone.

How does a spinal injury affect your life?

Spinal injuries can have a wide range of consequences. Hobbies that you formerly enjoyed may be tough to pursue. Daily routines are often interrupted. To accommodate your injury, adjustments must be made. Simple tasks such as preparing coffee or running errands become more difficult, if not impossible, to do. A spinal injury can even have long-term consequences on your life span expectancy.

A study from the University of Alabama exposes just how spinal cord trauma could reduce one’s life expectancy. Their findings demonstrated a link between a person’s life expectancy and the seriousness of a spinal cord injury. In it, it showed that some people’s life expectancy decreased by 5.2 years and that having to use a ventilator reduced a person’s life expectancy by 33.7 years on average.

Breathing problems, digestion complications, depression, motor, and sensory control loss are the most common reasons for loss of or decrease in enjoyment and expectancy. However, with the correct assistance and care, you may live far longer than a normal person. Unfortunately, such therapies are expensive to sustain, costing millions of dollars on average.

How does a spinal injury affect your finances?

Living with a serious and life-altering spinal injury without adequate treatment would be not only arduous, but also costly in terms of your life and financially. A spinal injury can possibly shorten your life span. Obtaining the proper treatment is the best method to counteract this, but it will be quite expensive. The same survey  shows how big of a burden a spinal injury can be on people and their families. Those who have had any kind of autonomic function impairment, for instance, should anticipate paying at minimum the least amount, however that is still well upwards of a million dollars.

Because treatments and ongoing care are costly, expenditures for far more serious traumas that lead a person to become paraplegic or tetraplegic skyrocket. You will then be forced to pay more throughout your future when you are younger at the time of your accident. Consider the case of a 25-year-old high tetraplegic. Therapies and ongoing medical support for their ailment costs an average of $4,789,384 dollars throughout their life. Spending the appropriate sum of funds for your health is costly and can quickly lead to debt. 

This is something you can overcome, though; by seeking the help of a personal injury attorney who can help you get the compensation you deserve. Our attorneys can explain the average settlement for car accident back injury cases.

So, What Are Your Options?

phoenix back injury attorney

You are entitled to compensation if you have sustained a spinal cord injury as a result of someone else’s carelessness. Your injury has affected not just the quality of your life, but also the length of your life. Why should you be forced to pay exorbitant amounts when it wasn’t your fault? Due to a company’s, doctor’s, or driver’s reckless and/or negligent acts, you’ve already suffered the repercussions. You ought not be held responsible for their behavior as well.

You have the legal right to pursue the perpetrators by bringing a lawsuit against them. Whenever you do, you may be able to seek restitution for current medical bills, future medical bills, and suffering and pain. A lawyer can give you further information on the details of compensation. The personal injury lawyers and back injury lawyers at Ybarra Maldonado Law Group are ready to fight for you! Call 602-910-4040 right now.

What if I’m Partially to Blame for My Injuries?

Victims are sometimes somewhat to blame for their injuries. This does not eliminate the possibility of receiving compensation for your injuries, as personal injury sufferers can claim damages regardless of if they are 99 % at responsible.

According to ARS 12-2505, in certain circumstances, Arizona applies the comparative negligence approach to decide the appropriate sum of compensation you can collect via a personal injury lawsuit.

A court will assess at your conduct during an accident to establish whether it contributed to your injuries under comparative negligence. After that, the court will give you a ratio of fault that essentially indicates your responsibility in the accident. Your claim’s value will thereafter be decreased by this proportion.

A survivor of a Phoenix car accident, for instance, could bring a $100,000 personal injury claim against the at-fault vehicle. But, if it is discovered that the victim was speeding when the accident occurred, the court could rule that he or she is 20% at blame. This implies that the victim’s claim will be lessened by 20%, or $20,000, bringing the total compensation available to $80,000.

Ybarra Maldonado Law Group’s Phoenix personal injury attorneys and back injury lawyers strive to ensure that your claim is fairly evaluated and also that, if you have been judged partially responsible, you are not held responsible for more than your fair portion of the occurrence.

Prioritize Seeking Medical Attention

Your health should always be your primary concern after being hurt in an incident. It does not matter if you feel like you have been harmed or not, you need to pursue medical assistance.

Throughout the claims process, a lawyer will serve as your representative.

Numerous accident survivors experience belated or concealed symptoms that might not manifest for days or even weeks following an injury. Often whiplash patients, for illustration, may not notice the signs of their injuries for several days in the wake of any incident.

Seeking medical help as soon as possible will give you a clear and deeper understanding of your injuries and the remedies you’ll require to recuperate.

Moreover, insurance providers will very certainly analyze your conduct following the incident. Getting medical help as soon as possible can help you record the extent of your damages and prove that they were induced by the event.

Spinal Cord Injury Treatment

Checking the victim’s breathing is the first step when treating spinal injuries. This type of severe injury in the upper neck can cause breathing problems, necessitating the use of a ventilator or a breathing tube. The sufferer is then immobilized with a backboard and a cervical collar to minimize any mobility of the spine, which could result in additional injury to the spine. Medical care will subsequently be limited to the establishment of an accurate diagnosis by emergency medical professionals. After the patient has been diagnosed, medical treatment might include a high dose of steroids. The objective is to reduce swelling and inflammation so that some of the damage to the spinal cord can be avoided.

To Relieve Pressure and Stabilize The Spine: Spinal Cord Surgery

Patients with spinal cord severe injuries will be put in traction or a cervical halo to stabilize the spine and avoid additional harm. Immediate surgery is the next step in spinal cord injury treatment. The goal of spinal cord surgery is to alleviate pressure on the cord by removing fractured vertebral segments that potentially could be pinching it. The use of rods, plates, and screws to support the spine is the second purpose of spinal surgery. The goal is to keep all of the spinal segments together until the bones recover. Physical and occupational therapy are started after surgery to help you regain as much function as possible.

Common Causes for Spinal Cord Injuries?

According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, there are presently over 250,000 Americans living with a spinal cord trauma. Each year, approximately 20,000 new SCI cases are diagnosed. The following are the most common causes of spinal cord injuries:

  • Nearly one-third (⅓) of SCI cases are caused by vehicular accidents.
  • Falls or workplace accidents also account for one-third (⅓) of all SCI cases.
  • Another prevalent cause is acts of violence (mainly gunshot wounds).
  • Sports injuries are the second (2nd) most common cause of death.
  • Medical or surgical errors account for roughly 5% of all SCI cases.

Fractures, dislocations, contusions, compressed vertebrae, and other injuries to the cervical, thoracic, lumbar, sacral, or coccygeal regions of the spine are included in these.

Collect Evidence When Possible

phoenix back injury lawyers

When it comes to the success of your claim, gathering all evidence you are able to at the site of the incident is critical. Therefore the more proof you have, the better; nonetheless, any evidence is preferable to none. Here are some instances of useful evidence:

  • pictures taken at the scene of the tragedy or accident (such as damaged vehicles or a wet floor)
  • video from traffic cameras or security cameras
  • vehicle identification number
  • a snapshot of your driver’s license
  • testimonies of witnesses

Back Injury in the Workplace

Individuals who suffer a serious spinal cord injury at work may be worried about maintaining their jobs and providing for their families. The spinal column can be damaged by lifting something incorrectly, repetitive motion injuries, major falls, or becoming entangled in or between equipment. If you were injured at work and sustained a back injury, you may have two options for financial restitution. The first is a claim for workers’ compensation. It’s possible that you’ll get paid for your medical expenses and two-thirds of your total weekly income without having to establish carelessness or culpability. A workers’ compensation claim, thankfully, covers the present and future medical expenses and lost earnings. Those who’ve been refused workers’ compensation should speak with an attorney as soon as possible.

These employees cannot sue their employer in exchange for workers’ compensation; nevertheless, they may be allowed to sue a third-party whose carelessness led to their damage. However, if your spinal cord injury was caused by someone else, the second alternative, a personal injury lawsuit, may be preferable. An injury claim might result in more money for your losses. Talk to our Phoenix, AZ spinal cord injury lawyers regarding your alternative choices before accepting a workers’ compensation settlement and giving up your opportunity to make a claim against your company. Both forms of cases can be handled by our attorneys.

Back Injury from a Car Accident

You may be entitled to obtain compensation for your losses if you experienced a spinal cord injury in a vehicle accident and feel your harm was the result of another’s conduct or failure to act. Even though a product liability lawsuit is an option, the majority of cases will be handled under the negligence premise. Your attorney will show four factors in a negligence claim: the defendant owed you a duty of care, this duty was broken in some way, you were injured, and the breach was the causative factor for your harm.

A black automobile, for instance, runs a red light and collides with a silver car at the junction. Drivers have the responsibility to act cautiously and be aware of their surroundings in order to avoid harming people on the road. The black car’s driver has broken this responsibility by rushing through the light. The driver of the silver automobile sustains injuries to his left hand and leg after it is hit. The silver car’s driver will have to endure pricey surgery and therapy to repair his injuries. The silver car’s driver might well be free to seek compensation for his losses if he can show that the black car’s breach of duty was the causative factor of his injuries and that he experienced damages as a result.

When you’ve been hurt as the result of someone else’s negligence, a car accident attorney can assist you in gathering information and evidence that may be critical to the success of your claim. Our lawyers are experienced with all fact-finding stages of your case, which might include:

  • Examining the site of the crime
  • Examining the site of the crime
  • Interviewing witnesses;
  • If there is any traffic film, it will be reviewed.
  • Examining data collected by an insurance provider; and
  • Experts in the subject of vehicle accidents, including accident recreationists, were consulted.

Medical Malpractice Caused Back Injury

You may be eligible to make a claim for negligence if you were hurt by a medical professional and claim he or she was directly accountable for your damage. In order to win a negligence suit, your lawyer must show that the doctor owed you a duty of care, that this duty was broken in some manner, that you were injured, and that the violation was the cause of the harm.

Assume a patient has an operation to correct displaced discs in their spine. The person’s surgeon owes it to them to do the surgery with the same level of caution just like any other surgeon in comparable conditions. The surgeon gets sidetracked during the procedure and nicks a separate portion of the patient’s spinal cord. He either misses his error or dismisses it as inconsequential. As a consequence, the patient sustains a spinal cord damage, which when left untreated can progress and lead to partial paralysis. If the person can show that the surgeon was negligent and that their paralysis was inflicted as a result, they could be entitled to file a claim for damages.

Causation, or that the irresponsible party’s activity prompted the harm, is the most challenging issue to show in a spinal cord injury lawsuit. If you decide to pursue a spinal cord injury claim, an attorney can compile evidence to show cause by studying medical papers and procedure notes, interviewing witnesses, investigating the surgeon’s history, and collaborating with medical malpractice specialists.

Contact a Phoenix medical malpractice lawyer for more information.

Product Liability for Back Injury

You could have a product liability claim on a manufacturer if you were hurt in an automobile accident and suspect a component in either vehicle led to or caused the incident. A manufacturer can be considered directly accountable for its faulty goods in a product liability case even if there is no evidence of wrongdoing. Your attorney must prove that a defect exists and that a harm occurred; nevertheless, strict liability is not a valid basis of complaint if your automobile was acquired secondhand or used.

If you feel the automobile or one of its parts caused the accident, you may be entitled to sue the manufacturer for compensation. To win, your lawyer must be able to demonstrate:

  • It was the manufacturer’s responsibility to sell a safe product.
  • The maker failed to fulfill this obligation (knowing or should have known about the flaw); and
  • The injuries were inflicted by the defect.

Your attorney can examine the company’s production process, discover if other made parts were faulty, and explain how the error resulted in your injuries while filing a lawsuit against a product maker.

Why Should You Hire a Spinal Cord Injury Attorney?

Spinal column injuries are among the most serious injuries that may befall a person; because of the importance of its function with the brain, the numerous surrounding nerves, and the high possibility of permanent paralysis and permanent disability. As a result, the losses and damages arising from these injuries are more substantial. Obtaining financial relief for these spinal cord injury damages may be challenging and intricate, which is why you need to hire a personal injury lawyer who specializes in the complications of back injuries and still is experienced with the complexities of the legal system. A lawyer who has handled cases involving spinal cord injuries can offer you with the knowledge and tools you need to respond to various surprises and bumps in the road that these types of cases can present and get you the compensation you deserve for your spinal cord injuries.

Because the damages in spinal cord injury claims are sometimes quite significant, insurance providers will go to great lengths to defend a case. In this circumstance, not having an attorney will leave you in a rather terrible spot where the insurance company has all the control. Failure to comprehend the typical norms and processes in these matters might result in errors that undermine your case and lower the remuneration you could obtain. A skilled attorney can balance and tip the scales of the fight, ensuring that you are not exploited and that your case is handled seriously.

What Kinds of Damages Can You Get in a Spinal Cord Injury Case?

Medical Bills: Plaintiffs are entitled to compensation for any medical care expenditures incurred as a consequence of the injury, medical care such as hospital bills, prescription meds, doctor appointments, and rehabilitative therapy, as well as any future medical costs.

Necessities such as wheelchairs, and similar devices, or home modifications if needed are included in this.

Lost Wages: Compensation for time spent away from work, as well as compensation for a loss of earning ability, may be provided.

Pain and Suffering: When a spinal cord injury occurs for someone, they likely will be in excruciating physical and mental pain for the rest of their lives. For their grief and suffering, these victims may be entitled to financial compensation.

Wrongful Death: Whenever the spine suffers a traumatic blow, it can sadly lead to death, the victim’s family then could be entitled to sue the person responsible. In some circumstances, the families of the victims could well be entitled to compensation for their lost one’s agony and suffering, along with funds to help with the economic strain left by their loved one’s departure. Contact a Phoenix wrongful death lawyer for more information.

How Much to Expect From a Back Injury Settlement?

Back injuries have the potential to be catastrophic. For minor injuries, settlements are smaller, but in the case of a life-altering back injury, settlements may be much larger. 

These settlements take into account many factors, including your medical costs, estimated lost wages, property damages, and endurance of pain and suffering are all imperative in evaluating a case. For an accurate representation of your case’s value, we recommend contacting our experienced Phoenix back injury lawyer for a free consultation.

What Is the Time Limit for Filing a Personal Injury Claim?

For most circumstances, filing a personal injury lawsuit as quickly as possible is in your best interests. Yet, every state sets its own deadline for individuals to file a lawsuit against the actor that caused their damage. The “statute of limitations” is the term for this. According to A.R.S.  § 12-542, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Arizona is two years from the date of the injury.

In other words, you have two years from the date of your injury to launch a lawsuit against the person or entity that caused your injury. The two-year statute of limitations can, although, be extended in certain instances.

Tolling the Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations can sometimes be suspended, or tolled, for a length of time in several cases. The statute of limitations in Arizona can get tolled in particular occasions such as:

  • If the victim is a juvenile beneath the age of 18, the statute of limitations does not commence until they turn 18.
  • The statute of limitations can also be deferred if the person was deemed to be mentally incompetent when the harm and injury occurred, and it lasts until a court certifies that the person is no longer incapacitated.

Since each case’s statute of limitations is different, it’s crucial to speak with an experienced Phoenix lawyer about the constraints that pertain to your case. Therefore, you should not wait to arrange a consultation because the time to submit a complaint is limited.

The Rule of Discovery

In select circumstances, the individual could be unaware that they were hurt during the incident. The discovery rule might be utilized to extend the statute of limitations in this situation.

When compared to those who do not have legal counsel, injury victims who employ the services of a professional receive greater financial restitution.

The statute of limitations nonetheless extends to a personal injury claim under the discovery rule.

The two-year limit, on the other hand, commences once they find, or should have reasonably found, that he or she was wounded.

Is it Worth Getting a Personal Injury Lawyer for a Back Injury in Phoenix?

Our back injury attorneys have the experience and the knowledge to let you know during your free consultation whether we believe you have a case or not. We have what it takes to determine the costs associated with your injury and to protect your interests. Give us a call at (602) 910-4040 or fill out our online intake form today for a free consultation.

Contact an Experienced Phoenix Back and Spinal Injury Lawyer

If you have any other questions about back or spinal injuries, Ybarra Maldonado Law Group can help. We are a group of experienced Phoenix back injury attorneys who remain committed to protecting the injured in Phoenix, Arizona.

At YMALG, we strive to be a client-centered firm that offers exceptional representation. Our goal is to empower our clients with the knowledge necessary to make the best decisions for themselves and their families. Call us today at 602-910-4040 or to see what we can do for you.



Our team of compassionate and experienced attorneys are here to help guide you in your time of need.

Ray A. Ybarra Maldonado, Esq.

Founder & Principal Attorney of Ybarra Maldonado Law Group
Criminal Law, Immigration Law, Personal Injury, and Civil Rights
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Brett Turley, Esq.

Senior Criminal Defense Associate Attorney
Ybarra Maldonado & Associates
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