Severe Spine Injuries Can Lead to a Loss of Future Income
By Michael Verna on April 12, 2017
Our law firm stands by accident victims living in the San Francisco Bay Area. We fight for clients in Oakland and the East Bay, and have also represented injury victims from San Jose and the South Bay. When someone suffers a severe or catastrophic injury, they can count on the lawyers of Bowles & Verna.
We know the impact that serious accidents can have on people's lives, especially when the injuries affect the back and spine. Our team of experienced spinal cord injury attorneys would like to consider how major back injuries can put your career at risk and how legal damages can take these professional setbacks into account.
The Dangers of Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injuries can lead to serious challenges in your everyday life. The damage to the spine can result in changes in your mobility, and an increased risk of another back injury. Your current career prospects may become limited as a result.
If you suffer a severe spinal cord injury, this can result in paraplegia (loss of use of your legs) or quadriplegia (loss of use of all your limbs). These kinds of paralysis will leave you bound to a wheelchair for life, and possibly dependent on the assistance of others just to accomplish simple tasks.
Impact on Your Livelihood
Spinal cord injuries can lead to severe changes to your current job and overall career path. You may lose your ability to lift heavy objects, use certain tools safely, or move your body in a certain way, which can lead to many on-the-job impediments for those in manual labor.
You may have to leave your current career and start all over again in a new vocation. That could require a major investment in education and training. You'll also be at a disadvantage starting all over again, which can have a major impact on how much you're able to make and save.
Diminished Earnings Due to the Injury
For people who have been rendered paraplegic or quadriplegic, these issues are even more severe. Being confined to a wheelchair limits your career options. You may not be able to pursue any career given the nature of your injury. While disability insurance can help with some necessities, the amount collected will not match what you could make at a regular job.
This is particularly important to consider when a person loses their ability to use all of their limbs. There may be no career prospects available at all in such cases.
How Compensatory Damages Work
Compensatory damages are damages that are sought in order to cover material losses that are related to an injury. This could mean damage to property, medical expenses, physical therapy and rehabilitation, and lost earnings. Compensatory damages are not to be confused with punitive damages, which are sought to punish a person or entity for acting in a negligent manner.
Compensatory damages essentially hold the negligent party accountable for the expenses that an accident victims has to take on as a result of an accident.
Calculating Lost Earnings
Calculating lost wages and future income is relatively straightforward. Pay stubs or financial information can be used to estimate current wages. Attorneys can then estimate raises based on average earnings from people in the same field with similar job experience. This can be estimated out for the span of a person's working career.
If you have to start over again in a new career, these costs may also be factored into the compensatory damages.
Learn More About Your Legal Options
To learn more about your legal rights and options following a serious injury, be sure to contact our team of skilled personal injury attorneys today. Our lawyers are here to help you and your loved ones in their time of legal need.