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Spinal Injury Claims

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Spinal cord injury can have devastating effects as depending upon the location of the injury, you may have lost the use of all or some of your limbs and some of your internal organs.

The higher up the spinal-cord the injury, the greater loss of sensation and mobility. An injury to the cervical spine will usually result in tetraplegia (affecting the movement and sensation in all four limbs and some stomach and chest muscles), with an injury to the back usually resulting in paraplegia (affecting the movements and sensation of the lower limbs and possibly some stomach muscles).

Recovery from a spinal injury is typically a long road, taking anywhere from a few months to a year before being discharged from the hospital/spinal-cord injury centre. After discharge, further progress can be expected; however, it is crucial that discharge from hospital is carefully planned, which could include making adaptations to the family home, the provision of an appropriately trained care team and ensuring that all of your treatment needs are met.

Although spinal cord injury may affect you or your loved ones immediate and future plans, it is possible for you to live a fulfilling life, which is just as rewarding as before. With technological innovations and appropriate support it is possible to set goals and to achieve these.

Robert James Solicitors have over 25 years’ experience and an excellent track record of supporting clients in making Spinal Injury claims. If you or your loved ones require legal advice and support on how best to proceed with a Spinal Injury claim, call one of our specialist solicitors on 0151 559 0120 or complete our online claim form and one of our solicitors will call you back.

Good to Know

Frequently asked questions related to Spinal Injury are answered below. If you have any other questions about Serious Injury Claims, contact us for further information and advice.

How will I pay my bills after a spinal injury?

With more and more people living month-to-month, suffering a spinal injury can cause great financial uncertainty, particularly if this necessitates a period of absence from work/inability to return to work.

If you have no entitlement to sick pay then this can often mean that families lose their only household income and with bills to pay, this adds additional stress at a time when you will already be under tremendous pressure.

In such circumstances a request for an interim payment should be submitted to the defendant insurer without delay. Such payments are an advance payment against the final settlement awarded at the conclusion of your case.

The court may make an award for an interim payment where the defendant has admitted liability to pay damages to you and the court is satisfied that you would receive a substantial amount of money from the defendant. Robert James solicitors have significant experience of securing substantial interim payments for clients to fund their immediate financial needs and to cover the cost of case management, home adaptations, support and treatment.

Robert James solicitors also have links with benefits advisers who are able to offer advice regarding available benefits and support for those who are victims of brain injury.

How long will it take for me to return home after spinal injury?

Whilst in hospital you will be under the care of a multidisciplinary team, typically including your medical consultant, nursing staff, occupational therapist, physiotherapist and case manager. It is important to note that you are also part of this team.

Your discharge date is generally based upon the timeframe required to meet your clinical rehabilitation goals. The discharge date would normally be set by the multidisciplinary team and as your rehabilitation progresses and your functional outcomes become clearer, discharge dates may be moved forwards or pushed backwards according to your needs.

Due to the extent of your needs, an occupational therapist will need to assess your home to determine whether it is suitable for your return. If adaptations are required, these will need to be completed before you return home. If the provision of equipment and adaptations is to be provided by community services, it is not uncommon to experience delays in the works being completed, which in turn can delay your return home.

Where this is the case, private provision for case management can fill the gap to ensure that the necessary home modifications/adaptations and support is put into place to ensure that you are not delayed in returning home. Such private provision would entail the appointment of a case manager who will complete an immediate needs assessment, further to which we would seek funding to implement the recommendations direct from the defendant. The aim of this provision is to supplement the support that you received from the NHS, to ensure that you do not experience any unnecessary delays in the provision of your treatment and/or return to the family home.

Robert James solicitors have extensive experience of the appointment of case managers and in applying for interim payments to fund the recommendations of the case manager. If you or your loved ones have been involved in an accident involving spinal injuries and wish to discuss case management or interim payments, please call one us on 0151 559 0120 or complete our online claim form and one of our specialist solicitors will call you back.

What treatment is available for spinal cord injury?

Depending upon the severity of your spinal injury it can take up to 2 years following a spinal injury to reach your optimum recovery; however, it is not yet possible to repair damage to the spinal cord.

Once your condition is stabilised, the general focus will be on avoiding the development of secondary problems such as infections, ulcers, blood clots and bowel or bladder issues.

Therapists will usually emphasise maintenance treatment to keep muscles supple and to avoid deconditioning and to help redevelop fine motor skills so that you can learn adaptive methods to undertake everyday tasks.

There are now numerous new technologies to help with daily living and to help those with spinal cord injuries regain their independence and mobility. Such examples include the use of prosthetics, new lightweight wheelchairs to help with mobility, aids to assist in the home and technology such as muscle stimulation devices that help to keep muscles active and therefore avoid the conditioning.

As with discharge planning, we would expect that a case manager would be heavily involved in assessing your needs to determine what adaptations, support and assistance you will need to help you achieve all your goals.

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